The RYA Youth Nationals 2019, held in the waters off of Weymouth Bay and Portland Harbour, was both the selection and qualifying event for the Irish team selection for the Youth Worlds 29er class. It was a challenging five day, 11 race competition with conditions varying from winds in excess of 25 kts to dense fog to shifty winds to champagne conditions. On the 4th day of the competition, the 61 strong fleet of 29ers completed an unprecedented 6 races in one marathon day.
NYC sailors Rian Geraghty-McDonnell and crew Nathan Van Steenberge took two bullets and secured 6th overall and top U17. The boys have now secured the “triple-crown” having won the U17 category in all 3 events they attended in the UK since November!
2nd place U17 (and first place girls U17) were Leah Rickard (NYC) and Eimer McMorrow Moriarty (TBSC), whose three 2nd places on day two helped them secure 9th overall and bronze medal overall in the girls competition.
Charlie Cullen and Ben Hogan (NYC & RStGYC) finished strong with a bullet in the final silver fleet race, 34th overall.
The event was also the final leg of the Irish Sailing trials for selection into the Sailing Youth Worlds in Poland (Gydnia) in July. For the boys, Rian Geraghty-McDonnell and Nathan Van Steenberge’s commanding performance secured their selection. Leah Rickard and Eimer McMorrow Moriarty also secured their ticket to Poland, becoming the first female team to represent Ireland in the 29er in the Youth Worlds.
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