Former Olympian Rory Fitzpatrick, now coach to sailing star Annalise Murphy, has proved to his protégé that experience can triumph over youth…at least when it comes to Moth sailing.
After an intense two day battle on the waters of Dublin Bay this weekend, Fitzpatrick beat off stiff competition which included Annalise Murphy to reign supreme at the DinghyKit.com Moth National Championship. Many of the world’s top sailors now compete in Moths as these boats offer some of the most challenging sailing in the world whilst allowing them to further hone their skills.
Blistering sunshine and light winds greeted the country’s top Moth sailors on Saturday (21 June) for the first day of the DinghyKit.com Moth National Championship in the National Yacht Club. The light conditions proved challenging for the fleet of high speed boats so tactics and strategy were crucial. Reachingspeeds of between 15 and 32 mph, the light-weight Moths almost fly across the water’s surface but achieving such speeds also means that when they capsize it’s spectacular. Buoyed on by the spectators on Dun Laoghaire’s East Pier, renowned Moth sailor John Chambers was first to take the lead. Fitzpatrick fought back in Race 2, taking the win and tying himself and rival Chambers on equal points at the top of the leader board.
Sunday (22 June) brought with it a fresh breeze and an exciting three-race spectacle. Earning his second win of the regatta, Fitzpatrick was in pole position after Race 3 just one point ahead of Chambers. After many positional changes and tight racing between the leading group, Annalise Murphy was the ultimate winner in Race 4. But this wasn’t enough to see her climb to a podium position. Now two points clear, Fitzpatrick had the championship title within grasp. In a display of skill seen only at this elite level, Rory Fitzpatrick earned his hatrick win in Race 5 to claim the title of 2014 Dinghykit.com Moth National Champion. Annalise Murphy had to settle for fourth place while John Chambers took Silver and Alistair Kissane went home with the Bronze.
Having only formed in 2013, the Irish Moth Tour has gone from strength to strength in recent months. The bug is biting and new sailors are continuing to join the fleet. A major boost for the Tour has been the announcement of title sponsor DinghyKit.com a one-stop-shop providing all the best dinghy systems and information online. DinghyKit.com is proud to support the Irish Moth Tour and what is one of the fastest growing classes in Ireland.