Despite the logistical nightmare of getting flags, judges and crew out onto the jagged rocks right in front of the Garry William break, the first heat began at 1145. Sixteen Pros assembled their gear about an hour before at Dumps and sailed out past Mossies and onto Garry William. The wind was a touch light at first but filled in as did the waves.
In the sets there were some really crackers; nearly mast high and perfect barrels and then one mighty crash as the waves pounded onto the rocks. First to fall foul was Nick Moffat. His kit totally destroyed and he was not a happy man. Then came the turn of Steve Jarvis who bailed out last minute and was then duly punished on the rocks. Even Irish wave legend Oisin Van Gelderen took a beating and broke his sail. But let\'s be fair, the conditions were knarly.
But between the thrashings, there was some awesome riding. Those that stood out included Oisin, Rich Potter, Adam Cropper and then the favourites Andy King, John Hibbard and Steve Thorpe who was really sailing well. As the heats were long (20mins plus) the sailors had ample time to catch the best sets but as the tide came in, the waves eased off and only a shoulder was left just as the final was finished. So, onto the results:
1. Andy King 2. Steve Thorpe 3. John Hibbard 4. Morgan McGuire 5. Rich Potter 6. Adam Cropper 7. Dan Gardner 8. Mark Bell
After all this fun, the judges tried to run a contest for the other fleets at Dumps but the wind was just too offshore and getting lighter as the day wore on. Forecast is not looking bad for tommorow and then again for Monday, the last day of so far a classic Irish contest.
Tonight the sailors will enjoy a FREE buffet at the Seven Hogs pub just outside Castlegregory so lucky we have a 10am start on Saturday - how civilised!
Event Sponsors: Reef, Da Kine, Spillanes pub, Seven Hogs pub, Splash Photography.
Photo Credit: Jamie Knox Watersports