Sixteen young WHSC sailors showed enormous grit and resilience as they took part in two days of intense competition at the Late Summer event in the Royal St George Yacht club in Dun Laoghaire.
The event involved 130 boats competing in six races over the two days, each one lasting an hour or more on an extensive course. According to Optimist Captain Nicola Harris, the WHSC fleet, some of whom were at their first ever event, “definitely found it a huge challenge in terms of the start lines and the length of the races. But they all stayed out with some encouragement, and raced all six races.”
Coach Dougie Elmes and Stuart Harris were on hand to provide support on the water, “giving the kids a friendly face to discuss race tactics and voice their concerns and worries.” Ben O’Sullivan also spent the two days on the water offering moral support.
Nicola said the WHSC sailors were “superstars who don’t realise how capable and amazing they are. Even when they were disillusioned” they stuck with it. There were lessons learned for the club in terms of racing, coaching and sailor preparation, she added. But it’s exciting to see such a significant fleet competing at national level, and an indication of the strength of the club into the future.
Every one of our hard-working Oppie fleet who competed should be very proud of their performance. Results achieved by WHSC sailors over the weekend included:
- Rory Whyte came second in the Senior Bronze fleet and was 30th overall.
- Nathan Harris was the highest ranking WHSC sailor in the Junior Fleet, coming 27th.
- Also in the Junior Fleet, Ruby Mcgee had the best individual race result of the weekend, with an 18th position on day two.
Also flying the WHSC flag were Kate Doolan; Ronan Quinlan; Jack Doolan; Lily Walsh; Lisa Whyte; Lúí Ivory; Sara Brazil; Nessa Brazil; Jenny Plant; Ana Strappe; Donnacha O’Sullivan; Grace Kelliher and Clara Spain.
All the parents who attended were hugely grateful for the support shown to the kids by Dougie, Stuart, Ben and Nicola.
Off the water, a great weekend was had by all.
Read Afloat.ie’s report on the event here.