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Rooster International Topper World Championships: Thai visitor takes it to the Max at Ballyholme

By Jill Goligher

Published 27/07/2016

Team spirit: James Watts, Anita Watts, Brian O'Neill, Derek Moorehead and Aine O'Neill of Sketrick at the Skiffie World event on Strangford Lough
Team spirit: James Watts, Anita Watts, Brian O'Neill, Derek Moorehead and Aine O'Neill of Sketrick at the Skiffie World event on Strangford Lough

Windy conditions on Belfast Lough yesterday made competition difficult for the 197 sailors from around the world taking part in the Rooster International Topper World Championships hosted by Ballyholme yacht club.

It was a particularly frustrating day for competitors in the in the 5.3 fleet class whose first race of the day had to be postponed due to the wind conditions not remaining constant. Had the race been allowed to continue, it would have given an unfair advantage to some sailors. The competitors were out on the water for approximately six hours but were unable to complete any of the three scheduled races.

The 4.2 class enjoyed a fairer wind as Monday's leader Max Yuang-Ngam from Thailand had another fantastic day of sailing to stay ahead of the fleet. In the first race of the 4.2 class, Max held of the challenge of second placed Curtis McKay of GB while in the second and final race, Max finished second to Carina Chen of China.

Racing continues off Ballyholme today with the last of the qualification series.

Meanwhile, the community coastal rowing championships, the Skiffie Worlds 2016, continued around Strangford Lough off Delamont country park near Killyleagh.

Teams from Canada, England, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Tasmania, USA and Wales are competing in teams of four people plus cox.

With seven rowing clubs established already, County Down has become a hot spot for coastal rowing from Donaghadee to Dundrum, with others being set up.

The Under 17 male final took place yesterday with the top three places going to visiting Scottish teams, Avoch from the Moray Firth, holding off Firth of Clyde and North Berwick. The local Strangford team were the top local finishers in fourth.

Belfast Telegraph

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