- Royal Ocean Racing Club’s 2022 IRC National Championship a resounding success.
On the Solent, the fleet was divided into three classes with the fastest in IRC One being the Ker 46 Van Uden, skippered by Volvo Ocean Race veteran Gerd-Jan Poortman, while lowest rated in IRC Three was Kevin Downer’s modified Fun 23 Ziggy.
All were in with a chance as witnessed in Sunday’s marginally lighter 10-15 knots conditions.
Oddly this year, each of the three classes individually had a stand-out winner, but ultimately it went to the wire for the overall prize.
Niklas Zennström’s FAST40+ Rán nearly lost it when she posted a third in Sunday’s first race, the only blemish on her otherwise perfect scoreline.
Van Uden won a race in IRC One, while at the opposite end of the fleet, the teenage Greig City Academy crew on the Quarter Tonner Cote, the second slowest boat in the fleet, impressed everyone by scoring their first race win of the series against substantially more experienced competition.
There could not have been a better advertisement how a diverse fleet is turned into level playing by IRC, the RORC-UNCL run rating rule.
However in IRC Three, Rán’s rival for the overall title, Adam Gosling’s JPK 10.80 Yes! scored a fourth in this same race.
In the longer round the cans racing that concluded the event, both scored bullets. The calculation then used to determine the overall IRC National Championship winner resolved with the 2022 IRC National Championship title going to Rán by the tiniest amount – 0.005 of a point – from Yes!
Rán ended the regatta nine points clear of Ian Atkins’ second placed GP42 Dark N Stormy, in turn seven ahead of the Dutch young team on Van Uden.
In IRC Two, the Cape 31 majority prevailed, claiming the top four spots but with John Cooper’s Fanatic winning by 12 points from Tony Dickin’s Jubilee, in turn five ahead of Lance Adams’ Katabatic.
Former RORC Commodore and Admiral Andrew McIrvine’s Ker 39 La Réponse squeezed into fifth place in IRC Two, winning on countback from the Blair family’s King 40 Cobra.
Adam Gosling and the crew of JPK 1080 Yes! won IRC Three by seven points from John Smart’s J/109 Jukebox, in turn four in front of James Chalmers’ J/112e Happy Daize. Having lost the overall title.
Full results can be found here: http://www.rorc.org/racing/race-results/2022-results