France takes top honours at the Nations Cup in Cork 11/9/06

France has won ISAF Nations Cup 2006 at the Royal Cork Yacht Club in association with Failte Ireland, the Irish Sports Council, and Smart Telecom.

The finals began at the weekend with the open event’s first flight between the South Africans (the defending team) and France first away. France took the first win and also led from the start in the second flight. An infringement at the windward mark then equalized the penalties but in the closing stages of the race the South Africans gybed in French water, made contact and were given another penalty leaving them with a double penalty at the finish to allow France to take the Nations Cup.

It was a European final for the women’s event with world no 1 Claire LeRoy and Denmark’s Lotte Pedersen taking up the gauntlet. France had to take a pre start penalty for luffing too high but at the windward mark – with 2-3 boatlengths to spare – were able to clear their penalty and managed to stay ahead by a nose. Taking the first match of the women’s final.

France’s second flight with Denmark was to be another close battle after an even start with both teams covering each other up to the windward mark. An incident with a passing cruiser at the leeward mark caused competitors to protest. The umpires decided that the incident did not affect their racing and France was able to clinch victory by a whisper.