Belfast Lough Yachting Conference
Ballyholme Yacht Club
Royal Ulster Yacht Club
Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club
County Antrim Yacht Club
Carrickfergus Sailing Club
Holywood Yacht Club
Donaghadee Sailing Club
Cockle Island Boat Club
East Antrim Boat Club
All content copyright Belfast Lough Yachting Conference 2013-
At the start of last season I expressed the hope that we, the Clubs on Belfast Lough, might adjust our regatta ambitions so that we would concentrate more on the fun and spectacle of these events for sailors and spectators alike.
For RNIYC that meant bringing our race area closer to the Club, trying to keep the boats as close to shore as possible and a relatively short overall race time to get crews off the water in plenty of time to enjoy the food and beverages in the marquee. While we achieved our ambition we also suffered from very high winds that Saturday and that reduced the number of competitors. Nevertheless we were satisfied that our objective was the right way to go and we will be repeating it this year.
Last year other clubs had mixed fortunes with the weather. Holywood cancelled but got some dinghy racing in and Royal Ulster had to cancel; both due to high winds while Donaghadee abandoned through lack of wind. The clubs whose regattas were able to take place reported some difficult conditions which curtailed plans but both Cockle Island and Ballyholme had the best of it. It was Ballyholme’s centenary year. Having had the pleasure of being at the club, in the bar rather than on the water, it was an absolutely perfect day in every respect. The sailing gods gave the club the best possible centenary.
Mixed fortunes around Belfast Lough over the main sailing season are, as we know, nothing new and it is a fair bet that the 2020 season will be no different. Anyone who has been involved in the preparations for their regatta knows the effort, time and personal sacrifice involved in getting the club ready for the on and off water activities. We owe to all those involved a great debt of gratitude that they are prepared to volunteer in whatever capacity especially knowing that the weather might scupper all those arrangements. But on behalf of BLYC I would like to thank all those volunteers without whom our regatta programme would not be possible.
RNIYC has been in the chair for the last two years so it is time to hand the baton on and I’m delighted that East Antrim have accepted the challenge for the next two years starting in 2021. RNIYC wishes them well.
And finally I would like to thank Ron Hutchieson and Robin Gray for their support in looking after the BLYC website and ensuring that the information needed is collected and displayed as a service to all those who take part in our regattas.
BLYC Chairman’s Remarks