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Ballyholme Yacht Club Aims for Weekend of Speed on Belfast Lough in 2022

13th January 2022
50 entries are expected for the BYC Weekend of Speed from 17th and 18th September
50 entries are expected for the BYC Weekend of Speed from 17th and 18th September Credit: Wavelength Images

Ballyholme Yacht Club on Belfast Lough is hopeful that the Weekend of Speed which was cancelled last year will in fact happen in September. The dates set aside are 17th and 18th September and around 50 entries are expected.

Richard Swanston who is organising the event is hopeful that Multihulls, RS 400s, 600s and 700s as well as 49ers, Wazsps, Moths and 505s will enter.

The current Irish Champions, local crew Adrian Allen and Barry Swanston who were in the top 20 in a World F18 event are expected to be joined by another BYC pair, Mat McNichol and Thomas Nixon, the current Irish Champions, and Wyatt Orsmond the 2019 Champion.

Catamarans at the 2019 Weekend of Speed Photo: Wavelength ImagesCatamarans at the 2019 Weekend of Speed Photo: Wavelength Images

49ers will race in an Open Handicap fleet which will include RS dinghies and here Richard Swanston expects to see Tokyo Olympians Rob Dixon and Sean Waddilove as well as Seafra Guilefoyle and Johnny Durcan, 8th, and 20th respectively in last year’s Worlds in Oman. Irish Olympian Matt McGovern from BYC is also likely to compete. Matt is currently running the 49er training programme for Team Ireland.

Bob Espey of the home club has shown an impressive turn of speed in his Waszp last season and is a local favourite. Another foil sailor who Richard hopes to see is Charlie Cullen whose 2021 performance was highlighted by Afloat.ie here. Cullen is a nominee in Afloat’s 2020 Sailor of the Year list.

The 505 class used to be strong at BYC but there has not been a fleet there for many years. Hopefully, that class will be represented, with competition ignited by the World 505 Championship in Cork a month before.

Notice of Race will be posted in due course on Ballyholme Yacht Club's website.

Betty Armstrong

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Betty Armstrong

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Betty Armstrong is Afloat and Yachting Life's Northern Ireland Correspondent. Betty grew up racing dinghies but now sails a more sedate Dehler 36 around County Down

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