Martin Byrne of Royal St. George sailing with Adam Winklemann and John Simms won the Dragon Class International Southern Area Championships at the Royal Cornwall Yacht Club.
A warm-up event for Tuesday’s prestigious Edinburgh Cup at the same venue in Falmouth saw Irish outfit Jaguar Sailing Team six points ahead of Royal Yacht Squadron’s Graham Bailey at the helm of the Duke’s classic Bluebottle Edinburgh with 18 points.
Six races were run with a gap in a fleet of 22 boats. Cowes Corinthian YC’s Simon Barter finished third.
Although Byrne did not win a race, the Irish trio had five top-three results in a consistent display which bodes well for the first British National Championship races for the Edinburgh Cup today.
Edinburgh Cup 2022
They will be the only Irish team competing – and a Corinthian team to boot – and face stiff competition from Britain who have just arrived in Falmouth Harbour, including pre-regatta favourite, Andy Beadsworth’s Provezza.
As regular Afloat readers know, winning the Edinburgh Cup is nothing new for Byrne and Winkelmann; the Dun Laoghaire crew lifted the Cup over a decade ago in 2011.
And their pre-event training reveals the depth of their ambitions to hold the Cup again for Ireland.
Byrne’s last event was pre-Covid at Abersoch in 2019, when they finished second behind Mike Budd.
“It’s almost a decade since we won the Edinburgh Cup in 2011, and we’ve had a few near misses since.”
Over the winter, the Jaguar team took part in a series of events in Portugal; four events in Vilamoura and a training week in Cascais. Last month they competed in La Baule, France, and at the National Yacht Club Regatta in June in Dublin Bay.
Ireland have won the Edinburgh Cup 13 times in their 73 year history.
UK South Coast Dragon results here