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Latest Sailing Stories
ICRA has launched two initiatives to promote cruiser racing in Ireland
ICRA
The Irish Cruiser Racing Association has launched two new initiatives aimed at getting more people sailing, and promoting and developing handicap racing. CREW POINT: ICRA is offering a new website to promote sailing events and for new and/or experienced sailors to…
There were 18 Water Wags competing in the first race for The Newsom Memorial Cup in Dun Laoghaire Harbour last night
Water Wag
Dun Laoghaire endured strong northerly winds for several days over the past week, so, there was a fear that many Water Wag owners would give the first race a miss. However, on 26th April, eighteen Water Wags competed in the…
Light air acing at last year's ICRA Nationals at Howth Yacht Club
ICRA
There will be no crew number limitations or crew weight limitations at this year's Irish Cruiser Racer (ICRA) Nationals at Royal Cork Yacht Club. The rule had been 'under review' following discussion at March's ICRA Conference in Limerick where it was…
London 2012 Olympic Race Officer Jack Roy from Dun Laoghaire has succeeded David Lovegrove as ISA President
ISA
I am very honoured to be elected as the new President of the Irish Sailing Association – a post which brings with it the need for vision and rigour as well as the potential for ongoing improvement. The first ISA…
Saskia Tidey crewing for Team GB's Charlotte Dobson in Hyeres
Tokyo 2020
Royal Irish Yacht Club's Saskia Tidey and helm Charlotte Dobson had an outstanding second day of racing at Hyères this afternoon, bagging two firsts and one second position out of six races (with one discard) in the 49erFX fleet writes…
Team AkzoNobel’s new-build Volvo Ocean 65 is prepped for refitting at The Boatyard in Lisbon
Volvo Ocean Race
#VOR - Team AkzoNobel’s brand new Volvo Ocean 65 has made the 2,000km journey from Persico Marine in Italy to The Boatyard in Lisbon. Staff at the state-of-the-art facility, which began work on the rest of the fleet last October,…
The Laurent Giles-designed classic Scythe with yawl rig fitted. Since being built in 1962, her rig has been varied between yawl and sloop, and she is currently sloop rigged
Boat Sales
The keener Irish owners of classic wooden yachts with performance potential are already finalising plans for an interesting season writes W M Nixon. In it, their judiciously-chosen programme will include enough races against other classics to give a sense of…
Top scorers at the Youth Pathway Nationals at Ballyholme last weekend in the Laser Radials were (left to right) Sally Bell (Royal North of Ireland YC) first girl and 11th overall, Ewan McMahon (Howth YC), first overall, Conor Quinn (Rush SC & CLYC) second overall, and Aaron Rogers (Rush SC) third overall.
Youth Sailing
There was such a cascade of results from the 190-boat, 208 -ailor Irish Youth Sailing Pathway Nationals at Ballyholme Yacht Club at the weekend that fully analysing the results every which way can go on for as long as you…
From 25th August to 7th September, the 1,000 nautical mile race course follows the Nord Stream pipeline from Kiel to Saint Petersburg
Offshore
This summer, a new format for the Nord Stream Race brings together some of the most high-achieving yacht clubs from the National Sailing Leagues: Starting on 25th August, the Baltic Sea’s best clubs to emerge from the 2016 season of…
Yachts from around the world will converge on Cowes for the start of the 2017 Rolex Fastnet Race in August
Fastnet
August's Rolex Fastnet Race remains on track for a record-sized fleet. Currently 390 boats are entered: 338 competing for the main IRC handicap prize; the remainder racing for their own trophies in the Class40, IMOCA 60, Volvo Ocean 65 and…
Dutch Grand Master, Piet Vroon is back, as skipper of Ker 51, Tonnerre 4, taking another tilt at the championship in IRC Zero
RORC
Over 500 yachts are taking part in the 2017 RORC Season's Points Championship. Over 5000 sailors from all over the world will race in the biggest offshore sailing competition in the world. While this year the 2017 Rolex Fastnet Race…
The 2017-18 edition of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race will set sail from Albert Dock, Liverpool
Clipper Race
The biggest round-the-world ocean race is to return to Liverpool with the start and finish of this unique global challenge moving from the capital back to the River Mersey on the tenth anniversary of its last partnership with the region.…
Winds gusted to 35–knots at start time
DBSC
Last night's opening race in the DBSC summer season was abandoned due to strong northerly winds on Dublin Bay. Unfortunately, it was a predictable outcome given earlier forecasts had suggested the prospect of wind in excess of 25 knots by…
Tom MacSweeney racing Seascapes at Royal Cork Yacht Club
Island Nation

Launch Your Boat Time!

25th April 2017
It’s launching time at Castlepoint Boatyard at Crosshaven in Cork Harbour where I keep SCRIBBLER II. That’s my Sigma 33, named rather appropriately for a journalist/scribe, as I’ve been told. The first SCRIBBLER was a Ruffian 23, much sailed and…
The first day of racing began with a light 6-10 knot easterly breeze, stronger winds are expected tomorrow
Tokyo 2020
Three Irish Laser sailors are in the middle of the fleet as round two of the 2017 World Cup Series in Hyères, France began today for 541 sailors in ten Olympic classes writes Nathaniel Ogden. After “one good race and one…
Scroll down for the video of the ISA Youth Nationals
Youth Sailing
Ballyholme Yacht Club has released a video of all the weekend action from Bangor Bay, the largest entry ever for the ISA youth national championships. Read our full report here and see the latest video moments below: 

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 [email protected]

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 [email protected]

Featured Clubs

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National Yacht Club

Featured Associations

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Featured Events

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Featured Sailing School

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Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
Tom MacSweeney - This Island Nation
RTE Seascapes
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