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McCarthy & Porter Clean Sweep in GP 14 Hot Toddy at East Antrim Boat Club

26th October 2021
GP 14 Hot Toddy at East Antrim Boat Club - Eighteen entered but some fell foul of the weather
GP 14 Hot Toddy at East Antrim Boat Club - Eighteen entered but some fell foul of the weather

The annual East Antrim Boat Club's Hot Toddy GP 14 meet was back last weekend after Lockdown, albeit with a vengeance. Thirty-five-knot winds and a nasty chop on Larne Lough on the east coast of County Antrim on Saturday played havoc with the fleet when it was survival of the fittest, with Sunday whilst lively, was more manageable.

Race Officer Richard Doig managed to get two races on the first day and three on Sunday, resulting in a successful event despite the conditions.

Race officer Richard Doig (left) and his team, Nicola Williamson and Kathryn BoyleRace officer Richard Doig (left) and his team, Nicola Williamson and Kathryn Boyle

Eighteen entered but some fell foul of the weather. Greystones Sailing Club's Shane McCarthy and Josh Porter made a worthwhile trip north to dominate the fleet, clocking up four firsts to take the overall prize.

Hot Toddy Shane McCarthy (14203) and Ger Owens (14256) in close combatHot Toddy Shane McCarthy (14203) and Ger Owens (14256) in close combat

Runners – up Ger Owens of Royal St George crewed by East Antrim's Melanie Morris had to use his DNC in Race 2 as a discard. Third overall were Hugh and Dan Gill of Sutton DC just one point behind.

Hugh and Dan Gill of Sutton DCHugh and Dan Gill of Sutton DC

In the Silver fleet, the top place went to Bill and James Johnson from the Lough Foyle club in the northwest followed by Steve and Dan Nelson of Newtownards SC in the north end of Strangford Lough.
Jennifer Bryce and Lara Sunday from Newtownards took Bronze.

There was some 'misbehaving' in Race 3 with two general recalls and the threat of U flag but they reined in and made a clean start at the third attempt.

Published in GP14
Betty Armstrong

About The Author

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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The GP14 is a popular sailing dinghy, with well over 14,000 boats built.

The class is active in the UK, Ireland, Australia, South Africa, Sri Lanka and parts of north-eastern USA, and the GP14 can be used for both racing and cruising. 

Designed by Jack Holt in 1949, with the assistance of the Dovey Yacht Club in Aberdyfi. The idea behind the design was to build a General Purpose (GP) 14-foot dinghy which could be sailed or rowed, capable of also being powered effectively by a small outboard motor, able to be towed behind a small family car and able to be launched and recovered reasonably easily, and stable enough to be able to lie to moorings or anchor when required. Racing soon followed, initially with some degree of opposition from Yachting World, who had commissioned the design, and the boat soon turned out to be an outstanding racing design also.

The boat was initially designed with a main and small jib as a comfortable family dinghy. In a design philosophy that is both practical and highly redolent of social attitudes of the day the intention was that she should accommodate a family comprising parents plus two children, and specifically that the jib should be modest enough for "Mum" or older children to handle, while she should perform well enough to give "Dad" some excitement when not taking the family out. While this rig is still available, and can be useful when using the boat to teach sailing, or for family sailing, and has some popularity for cruising, the boat is more commonly seen with the full modern rig of a mainsail, genoa and spinnaker. Australian boats also routinely use trapezes.

At A Glance – GP14 Dinghy Specifications

Crew 2
Draft 1,200 mm (47 in)
Hull weight 132.9 kg
LOA 4.27 m (14 ft)
Beam 1.54 m
Spinnaker area 8.4 m2
Upwind sail area 12.85 m2

GP14 2022 Irish Fixtures 

Spring Open (Apr 30 May 1)
Sligo YC

Ulsters (May 21-22)
Lough Foyle YC

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O'Tiarnaigh Pre-Worlds (Jul 30-31)
Skerries SC

GP14 Worlds (Aug 14-19)
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Leinsters (Sep 17-18)
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Hot Toddy/Youth Championship
(Oct 15-16) - Newtownards SC

Munster Championship
(Nov 5-6) - Cullaun Sailing Club

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