Over the Easter weekend the Danske Bank Laser Munster Championships took place for the three Laser classes – 4.7, Radial and Standard classes. 100 sailors participated in the event from the newly built Baltimore Sailing Club in West Cork.
Day one saw 10-12 knots of breeze in glorious sunshine. In the first race in the Olympic Laser Standard class Rory Lynch was in first place but it was his brother Finn who was the overall winner with a 5, 2, 1 result in the three races of the day. On Day 2 Finn from the National Yacht Club continued his form with a 4, 1, 1, in the second day to claim victory over Robbie Gilmore from Strangford Lough and in third place Eoin Keller from Lough Derg Yacht Club and Fionn Lyden from Baltimore in fourth place. ISA Development squad sailor Finn came to Baltimore following a strong performance at the Split Olympic week where he finished 10th overall and first Irish which means he will join Providence Team IRL, the Irish Olympic sailing team in Santander in September with the hope of qualifying Ireland in the Laser Standard class for Rio 2016.
In the 37 strong Radial class, after day one Ryan Glynn from Ballyholme YC was ahead of Daragh O’Shea, Kinsale YC, Jack Higgins, Royal St George Yacht Club and local sailor Mark Hassett and Erica Ruigrok from Rush SC. Day Two saw stronger steadier breezes and the day started with Erica Ruigrok winning the first race with Mark Bolger from Royal St George/Baltimore SC winning the second race from strong local competition from Dermot Lyden and Mark Hassett. The final race was won by Ryan Glynn who was the overall winner by an impressive margin of 23 points with Mark Hassett in second place, Erica Ruigrok from Rush SC in third and Mark Bolger finishing fourth.
In the 4.7 class Johnny Durcan from RCYC who was the overnight leader went on to win the event with Rory Caslin from the National YC and Daniel Raymond also from the National YC in Dun Laoghaire finishing in second and third respectively.
Baltimore Sailing Club was redeveloped over the winter months thanks to the support of the West Cork Development Partnership and the generosity of members and local businesses. The 100 sailors and their family & friends were able to avail of the new state of the art facilities in the club.
Commenting on the first event in the newly renovated facilities, Baltimore SC Commodore Joan Collins stated ‘We are delighted to host the Lasers again. The Easter weekend in Baltimore is a stable in the Laser calendar for over 20 years and sailors of all ages from all over Ireland congregate here this weekend every year. All the contractors worked hard to ensure that the new clubhouse was finished in time and I would like to thank Danske Bank for supporting us in our inaugural event in our new clubhouse. We look forward to welcoming more National and International events to Baltimore over the coming years.’