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Latest Sailing Stories
Crowded finish – IRL 910 (Tom Dolan & Francois Jambou) coming in to Douarnenez ahead of the crowd for the 600-mile Mini-Fastnet finish, taking third just five minutes and twelve seconds behind the winner
Solo Sailing
Tom Dolan and his co-skipper Francois Jambou are back up to speed in Brittany and well rested after a mixture of experiences in the Douarnenez Mini-Fastnet two-hander writes W M Nixon. The race to the Fastnet and back is part…
Noel Butler/Stephen Oram – DBSC 'America's Cup' winners in the Fireball class
Fireball
Tuesday saw another DBSC outing for Fireballs in the Dun Laoghaire summer series. The wind was a blustery warm southerly with gusts reaching high teens at times. This may have prompted the race committee to set the conservative W-L course…
The Water Wag is the oldest one design dinghy in existence, having been devised in 1886 and formalised as a one design class in Ireland in 1887
Water Wag
The Collen Cup is a new perpetual trophy which has been in the Collen family since 1907 and will be awarded to the overall winner of the Water Wag Class within the Classic section of this and subsequent Volvo Dun…
The UK flagged Maybe underway off the east coast having anchored overnight off The Murrough, Wicklow. The ketch is seen heading northward bound for the Irish Maritime Festival, Drogheda that took place in mid-June
Tall Ships
#SailingBursary - As part of the Drogheda Sail Training Bursary Presentations to mark the fifth year of the local youth initiative a large gathering was held to celebrate the event.  The gathering was the largest ever event held in Drogheda…
NYC Aims For World Record Pontoon Splash This Weekend
National YC
#NYC - The National Yacht Club is hosting a world record attempt Pontoon 50 Splash as part of its Junior Section Golden Jubilee celebrations this weekend. All NYC members aged “from five to 105” are invited to join in the…
At home in boats and sailing. The late Cas Smullen (right) in relaxed mode on main-boom control duties aboard a Dublin Bay 24 sailing fast offshore
National YC
With his death at the age of 87, the loss of Cas Smullen deprives Irish sailing of a total enthusiast whose dedication to our sport was central to his entire existence. Such was his exuberant enjoyment of sailing that one…
A Cruisers One start during the 2015 Regatta. 290 races will be held in VDLR 2017 starting on July 6
Volvo Regatta
With its focus on quality over quantity, next week's Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta has grown over 12 years into one of Ireland’s premiere sporting events, let alone sailing – and is now competing with the best in Europe. If you…
DBSC Laser racing
DBSC
B21S - 1. ISOLDE (B MULKEEN & J MARTIN), 2. BILLY WHIZZ (P SHANNON), 3. VENTUNO (R FOGARTY) COMBINED CRUISERS TUESDAY - 1. Windjammer (L Casey & D Power), 2. Hanse Off (J O'Gorman), 3. Jalapeno (P Barrington et al)…
On the Friday opening of Dublin Riverfest held earlier this month is seen the purpose-built spectator stand that is a novel feature for an Irish maritime festival. The stand was especially erected to overlook the tallships (including Shtandard also above), the flyboarding antics of Jet Man and those ThunderCats!
Tall Ships
#SpectatorStand - Looking back on the fifth Dublin Port Riverfest held over the June bank holiday the Liffey event attracted record crowds thronging the North Wall Quay, writes Jehan Ashmore. On the Saturday alone a record 41,500 visitors attended out…
Welsh Yacht Mojito leads the ISORA series but this Friday's Lyver race from Liverpool carries extra points
ISORA
The Commodore of the Royal Dee Yacht Club, Alastair Soane, has announced that “Jack Ryan Whiskey” is to sponsor the Royal Dee Yacht Club Irish Sea Offshore Championship that starts with the “Lyver Race” from Holyhead to Dun Laoghaire this…
So Long, ISA - Hello, Irish Sailing
ISA
#IrishSailing - The Irish Sailing Association is now known as Irish Sailing. The branding refresh comes on the foot of member feedback to Ireland’s national governing body for sailing, powerboating and windsurfing – and is intended to underline changes within…
Peter Burling and crew raise the Auld Mug aloft after their victory in the 35th America’s Cup in Bermuda on Monday 26 June
America's Cup
#AmericasCup - It only took one more race for Peter Burling and Emirates Team New Zealand to seal the deal and clinch the Auld Mug in the 35th America’s Cup match in Bermuda yesterday (Monday 26 June). Race nine, the…
Matt McGovern and Robbie Gilmore, one of six Irish boats competing, round a leeward mark just ahead of Finland and India at Kiel Week
Tokyo 2020
After a breezy edition of 2017 Kiel Week, it was Belfast's Ryan Seaton and Cork's Seafra Guilfoyle who were top of the six Irish campaigns that travelled to Kiel Week in Germany last week. The London and Rio helmsman with new…
Saskia Tidey with Team–GB team mate Charlotte Dobson after winning at Kiel Week
Tokyo 2020
Dun Laoghaire sailor Saskia Tidey continued her winning run in Kiel Week last weekend where she, and her new Team–GB team mate Charlotte Dobson, added Gold at the German Regatta to Silver earned at Sailing World Cup Finals in Santander,…
A great start for Ballyholme Yacht Club's Liam Glynn at Kiel Week
Laser
Sole Irish Laser sailor Liam Glynn of Ballyholme Yacht Club in Northern Ireland raced four races in 20–25 knots at Kiel Week, Germany. By his own account, the former Topper World Champion said he had some 'good sailing' but also made some…
420 duo Grace O'Beirne and Kathy Kelly, pictured here in Dun Laoghaire, competed last week at Kiel Week in Germany
420
In the same weekend that Dunmore East ICRA sailors won the Sovereign's Cup, Waterford Harbour dinghy sailors were strutting their stuff on the international dinghy circuit. Geoff Power and James McCann took a creditable seventh overall in a massive 135–boat 420…

How to sail, sailing clubs and sailing boats plus news on the wide range of sailing events on Irish waters forms the backbone of Afloat's sailing coverage.

We aim to encompass the widest range of activities undertaken on Irish lakes, rivers and coastal waters. This page describes those sailing activites in more detail and provides links and breakdowns of what you can expect from our sailing pages. We aim to bring jargon free reports separated in to popular categories to promote the sport of sailing in Ireland.

The packed 2013 sailing season sees the usual regular summer leagues and there are regular weekly race reports from Dublin Bay Sailing Club, Howth and Cork Harbour on Afloat.ie. This season and last also featured an array of top class events coming to these shores. Each year there is ICRA's Cruiser Nationals starts and every other year the Round Ireland Yacht Race starts and ends in Wicklow and all this action before July. Crosshaven's Cork Week kicks off on in early July every other year. in 2012 Ireland hosted some big international events too,  the ISAF Youth Worlds in Dun Laoghaire and in August the Tall Ships Race sailed into Dublin on its final leg. In that year the Dragon Gold Cup set sail in Kinsale in too.

2013 is also packed with Kinsale hosting the IFDS diabled world sailing championships in Kinsale and the same port is also hosting the Sovereign's Cup. The action moves to the east coast in July with the staging of the country's biggest regatta, the Volvo Dun Laoghaire regatta from July 11.

Our coverage though is not restricted to the Republic of Ireland but encompasses Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and the Irish Sea area too. In this section you'll find information on the Irish Sailing Association and Irish sailors. There's sailing reports on regattas, racing, training, cruising, dinghies and keelboat classes, windsurfers, disabled sailing, sailing cruisers, Olympic sailing and Tall Ships sections plus youth sailing, match racing and team racing coverage too.

Sailing Club News

There is a network of over 70 sailing clubs in Ireland and we invite all clubs to submit details of their activities for inclusion in our daily website updates. There are dedicated sections given over to the big Irish clubs such as  the waterfront clubs in Dun Laoghaire; Dublin Bay Sailing Club, the Royal Saint George Yacht Club,  the Royal Irish Yacht Club and the National Yacht Club. In Munster we regularly feature the work of Kinsale Yacht Club and Royal Cork Yacht Club in Crosshaven.  Abroad Irish sailors compete in Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC) racing in the UK and this club is covered too. Click here for Afloat's full list of sailing club information. We are keen to increase our coverage on the network of clubs from around the coast so if you would like to send us news and views of a local interest please let us have it by sending an email to webeditor@afloat.ie

Sailing Boats and Classes

Over 20 active dinghy and one design classes race in Irish waters and fleet sizes range from just a dozen or so right up to over 100 boats in the case of some of the biggest classes such as the Laser or Optimist dinghies for national and regional championships. Afloat has dedicated pages for each class: Dragons, Etchells, Fireball, Flying Fifteen, GP14, J24's, J80's, Laser, Sigma 33, RS Sailing, Star, Squibs, TopperMirror, Mermaids, National 18, Optimist, Puppeteers, SB3's, and Wayfarers. For more resources on Irish classes go to our dedicated sailing classes page.

The big boat scene represents up to 60% of the sail boat racing in these waters and Afloat carries updates from the Irish Cruiser Racer Association (ICRA), the body responsible for administering cruiser racing in Ireland and the popular annual ICRA National Championships. In 2010 an Irish team won the RORC Commodore's Cup putting Irish cruiser racing at an all time high. Popular cruiser fleets in Ireland are raced right around the coast but naturally the biggest fleets are in the biggest sailing centres in Cork Harbour and Dublin Bay. Cruisers race from a modest 20 feet or so right up to 50'. Racing is typically divided in to Cruisers Zero, Cruisers One, Cruisers Two, Cruisers Three and Cruisers Four. A current trend over the past few seasons has been the introduction of a White Sail division that is attracting big fleets.

Traditionally sailing in northern Europe and Ireland used to occur only in some months but now thanks to the advent of a network of marinas around the coast (and some would say milder winters) there are a number of popular winter leagues running right over the Christmas and winter periods.

Sailing Events

Punching well above its weight Irish sailing has staged some of the world's top events including the Volvo Ocean Race Galway Stopover, Tall Ships visits as well as dozens of class world and European Championships including the Laser Worlds, the Fireball Worlds in both Dun Laoghaire and Sligo.

Some of these events are no longer pure sailing regattas and have become major public maritime festivals some are the biggest of all public staged events. In the past few seasons Ireland has hosted events such as La Solitaire du Figaro and the ISAF Dublin Bay 2012 Youth Worlds.

There is a lively domestic racing scene for both inshore and offshore sailing. A national sailing calendar of summer fixtures is published annually and it includes old favorites such as Sovereign's Cup, Calves Week, Dun Laoghaire to Dingle, All Ireland Sailing Championships as well as new events with international appeal such as the Round Britain and Ireland Race and the Clipper Round the World Race, both of which have visited Ireland.

The bulk of the work on running events though is carried out by the network of sailing clubs around the coast and this is mostly a voluntary effort by people committed to the sport of sailing. For example Wicklow Sailing Club's Round Ireland yacht race run in association with the Royal Ocean Racing Club has been operating for over 30 years. Similarly the international Cork Week regatta has attracted over 500 boats in past editions and has also been running for over 30 years.  In recent years Dublin Bay has revived its own regatta called Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta and can claim to be the country's biggest event with over 550 boats entered in 2009.

On the international stage Afloat carries news of Irish and UK interest on Olympics 2012, Sydney to Hobart, Volvo Ocean Race, Cowes Week and the Fastnet Race.

We're always aiming to build on our sailing content. We're keen to build on areas such as online guides on learning to sail in Irish sailing schools, navigation and sailing holidays. If you have ideas for our pages we'd love to hear from you. Please email us at webeditor@afloat.ie

Featured Clubs

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Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
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