A fleet of 24 entries made the start line for day one of the SB20 Eastern Championships at Howth Yacht Club. With a cold North Easterly promising to die off by mid-afternoon, PRO Harry Gallagher and his team got the show on the road right on time and sent the fleet away cleanly.
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Defending his title Ben Duncan on Sharkbait set to it right away with a race 1 win but not before a bit of upwind duelling with Cork sailor Mel Collins each trying to throw the other to the wrong side of the race course. Duncan was able to break tacks and came out on top leaving the Collins family with a second in race 1.
With an ever decreasing wind and a strong south going tide, Race 2 got underway with a 50/50 split in the fleet upwind on each side of the course. With the wind planning to clock right, strangely it was the left handers who made it to the top first. Scott MacKeown with Nicholas O'Leary on board showing a clean pair of heels but chased closely by Royal Irish YC man John O'Driscoll on Boomchickawahwah. It was a bottom end split at the final rounding that decided race 2 with McKeown opting for right and O'Driscoll opting for left. It was O'Driscoll who got the bullet but only by a nose.
Race 3 went to a black flag after two general recalls in ever decreasing wind which had now gone to full easterly and further dying. A large bunch-up at the first weather mark allowed Ger Dempsey and Chris Nolan on Venuesworld.com slip in before the gaggle and pull some distance on the fleet. Venuesworld.com were never really threatened after that and went on to score their first Championship race win.
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