After a much more intelligent and organised day down at Kinvarra, we finally got to see some Hooker racing. We checked the tides and the race programme and didn’t even set out from here till 14:30 for the one and a half hour run. We had plenty of time to park up in the town, walk down to the harbour to watch some race preparation. In this part of the world the shouts and hails and instructions to crew are done mainly in Irish, with occasional bits of English creeping in. I’d have to learn a whole new language to ‘volunteer’ here! The race preparation included sending the crew off to the nearby rocky beach to gather coal-sacks full of rocks for ballast. These can be dumped during the race if they cease to be useful.
We “did a Dave B” using our local knowledge and a sneaky look over the shoulder of one Skipper as he jumped on board holding his laminated course-map. We could see that if we drove down the headland and waited at Parkmore Pier, we’d see some nice views of boats running down the Bay towards us. I just had to sit there in the pleasant sunshine and breeze with my ‘pap’ lens and talk to the other race fans till red sails appeared from the harbour.
A brilliant experience which if any readers are in the Galway area mid August, I’d recommend you try to copy!