Doyle and O’Higgins battle for Calves glory

Sailing

Doyle and O’Higgins battle for Calves glory

Light winds and, at last sunny conditions marked the penultimate day of Calves Week at Schull Harbour Sailing Club yesterday, as the four day series comes to an end today.

In Class 1 under IRC handicap, Paul O’Higgins Rockabill V won the race which was the highlight of the week out to the Fastnet Rock off Cape Clear island.

But two-way battle at the front of the class that has been running since Tuesday saw Conor Doyle place fourth on Freya to hold second place overall in the class.

However, the tables are turned under the ECHO handicap system where Doyle leads from O’Higgins in second place.

Class 2 is set for a match-race decider this afternoon between the two front-runners in this, the largest division of the regatta with 13 entries.

Dun Laoghaire’s Leslie Parnell currently leads the field under IRC handicap on Black Velvet while Cobh’s Fergus Coughlan on Jedi lies second.

However, if today’s fourth race is completed as planned, a single event discard comes into play so each boat can drop their worst result.

On that basis, Parnell and Coughlan are tied so today’s race could split them.

Meanwhile, third placed Frank Desmond on Bad Company from Crosshaven is just a point behind waiting to seize on an error by either or both of the two leaders.

Parnell also leads the class on ECHO handicap so the stakes are high for him with a double-victory on the cards.

Pressure will be on Judy McGrath and the crew of Bonanza this afternoon as overall victory hangs in the balance from today’s finale.

Fifth place in yesterday’s race to the Fastnet spoiled a run of first places but the chasing pack led by Royal Cork YC clubmate Jimmy Nyhan on Outrigger are a point apart from each other and within reach of the leader.

Amongst the White Sails, Bob Rendell’s Samatom led the entire 65-boat fleet home to win the race after just under four hours on the water.

Oonagh Buckley’s Tete a Tete won Class 4 ECHO after almost six hours of racing as light winds gripped the fleet.

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