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Podium beckons for Irish sailor Rocco Wright at ILCA European Championships in Italy

by Treasa Cox 16 Mar 13:27 PDT 12-17 March 2023
ILCA European Championships day 5 © Thom Touw Photography / EurILCA

After challenging conditions at the ILCA European Championships (Andora, Italy) defending title-holder Rocco Wright (Howth Yacht Club) faces a two-race challenge for Friday's finale with an almost certain prospect of a podium result.

Greek sailor Athanasios Kyfidis and Mattia Cesana of Italy edged ahead of Wright today but just seven points separate first to third places in their event, the ILCA 6 men's championship.

The leading sailors have opened up a large gap on the points table to the remainder of the 71-boat class that includes Fiachra McDonnell (Royal St. George Yacht Club) in eleventh overall.

However, the day ended with disappointment for top ranked world sailor Finn Lynch (National Yacht Club) who placed fourth in the day's first race for the senior men's ILCA 7 event. A protest by Australian event leader Matt Wearn against the Irish sailor for an alleged rules infringement saw Lynch accept an arbitration penalty ashore following the end of racing for the day.

The added points dropped Lynch to 15th overall and his best outcome for the championship would be a top ten placing on Friday.

"It's a back-handed compliment of sorts when the championship leader goes after you," commented Rory Fitzpatrick, Irish Sailing’s Head Coach. "If Finn was mid-fleet or not considered a real threat he wouldn't have bothered."

Meanwhile, Howth's Eve McMahon ended her penultimate day in 18th overall in her 56-boat ILCA6 women's senior event.

"It was all about no risk, no reward," commented Fitzpatrick. "Eve played the middle (of the course) but got passed on the sides. For both Rocco and Eve, the only form of defence today was attack."

Racing concludes on Friday with two races scheduled for all three events in the combined championship.

To follow the competition and results please visit

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