Entries for Cork Dry Gin Calves Week 2014 in Schull, West Cork, are substantially up on last year at this stage. With the long-standing sailing regatta now just 3 weeks away (5th – 8th August), entries of visiting boats are appreciably up on recent years, with in excess of 60 boats entered at this stage, including boats from Dublin, Waterford, Cobh, Cork, Kinsale, Schull, Kerry and the UK. Entries of note include Frank Desmond’s Bad Company, Conor Doyle’s Freya, Michael O’Leary’s Act Two, Alan McEneff’s Dexterity, Jimmy Nyhan’s Outrigger, Philip Smith’s Just Jasmin, Henry Hogg’s Lisador, Gaby Hogan’s Growler, Declan Hayes’s Indecision, Ross Cahill O’Brien’s Zephyr, Aubrey Leggett’s Elandra, Denis O’Sullivan’s Aris and the Cobh based boats Muskateer and Bombora.
Rui Ferreira, Vice Commodore of Schull Harbour Sailing Club and in charge of organising this year’s sailing regatta, welcomed this level of interest. “We have been working hard to get new visiting boats to Schull this year and our efforts appear to be paying off. It adds hugely to the competition and excitement for all participants. Not only are we getting new entrants, including some from the UK for the first time, skippers who haven’t been down to West Cork in recent years are returning in 2014.”
Rui is particularly pleased that the current level of entry means a high level of competition across all classes of cruisers. "We will see some serious racing if the weather conditions are right. The organising committee has always viewed an entry level of around 60 boats as around the right level for serious racing while ensuring that every crew has an enjoyable time. We are ahead of that on entries now and that's before the usual last minute rush. It’s a quality problem and a marker of how Cork Dry Gin Calves Week has managed to maintain its reputation for great competitive cruiser racing over the last few years,” Rui added.
The annual sailing regatta, which is more of a family orientated event than most major competitive sailing regattas, is a big boost to the local community each summer. The village provides entertainment on the street every evening. This year, the week will be capped by a remarkable event in its own right, the 130th Anniversary of its Regatta on the Sunday after Calves Week. The village is planning a major celebration of this historical event on the day on shore with a fireworks display and food and music throughout the event. The organisers are planning to revive a number of the traditional activities on Regatta day. These include Yawl rowing races, an outdoor market; crab fishing competitions, and the event will kick off with a "Greasy Pole" competition for the brave of heart on Saturday the 9th.
Entries forms for Cork Dry Gin Calves Week 2014 can still be downloaded from www.shsc.ie. Entry fees have been maintained at last year’s level, helped by the ongoing sponsorship of Cork Dry Gin who are maintaining a long association with Irish cruiser racing through their sponsorship of the Regatta.
General information and links to accommodation are available on www.schull.ie.