With that easterly wind flow affecting the whole west coast of Ireland, it was off to Dumps for some riding in the offshore winds. The wind was not consistent as it blew through the sand dunes and sometimes there was literally no breeze but then sailors would be planing on 5.3m. But the swell was much better; solid head high in the sets; the weekend surfers were loving life.
The decision was made to run the Ladies first in the on and off conditions. Louise & Katie went head to head but it was Louise that caught the best wave and she was then put through to the Amatuers. The IWA also had their first heats with the Gold fleet making the offshore conditions look easy. Sweet hits from Oisin Van Gelderen, Finn Mullen, Dan Gardner and Morgan McGuire.
The Amateurs have had a great competition with the standard of sailors really close making it super competitive. Two heats of four with the top two going through to a final saw Llandudno locals Nigel Treacy and Louise Emery join Chris Cunningham and Chris Cartin. The wind was very light in the final but the sets came rolling in; you had to be in the right place at the right time and then powered up to actually catch one of the perfect peelers. Louise & Chris Cartin managed to do just but Louise scored more points. Nigel Treacy had some awful bad luck and snapped his mast following a tumble in the waves, exactly what happened in the Amatuer final on Tiree last October! So Louise is leading the Amateurs with two more days to go.
Aleksy Gayda and Sam Darkin went head to head like the Ladies things were super close between these two in their heats.
The UKWA Pros were by now praying the judges weren’t going to send them out in the very offshore winds. Most had escaped to go surfing at Drain Pipes just up the beach from Dumps. At 5pm the judges, having checked out Strand Bally, Gowlane and Garry Williams, called it off. The wind tomorrow is not great so maybe a day resting for all fleets.
RESULTS from Saturday
Amateurs 1. Louise Emery 2. Chris Cartin 3. Nigel Treacy 4. Chris Cunningham Joint 5th Chris Wilcox and Gerry Wilcox
Ladies 1. Louise Emery 2. Katie
PHOTOS: Sorry for the lack of action, official photos will be up tomorrow so thanks to Steve King for providing these! The strange looking guy in the helmet is Russ \'Crazy Horse\' Tetlow!
Photo Credit: Steve King