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Latest Sailing Stories
Dear Prudence (black spinnaker) Barry Lyons & John Given of the RIYC leads ICRA Boat of the Year Joker II skippered by John Maybury (red spinnaker). Joker II is ahead of Royal Irish club mates Beneteau 34.7 Black Velvet (3471) Leslie Parnell and J109 sisterships Indecision (Declan Hayes, Ronan Moloney, & Patrick Halpenny) and Jump the Gun (John M. Kelly & Michael Monaghan) into a Scotsman’s Bay mark in Sunday’s DBSC Spring Chicken Series race
DBSC
The Beneteau 34.7 Black Velvet is the leader after two races sailed of the DBSC Spring Chicken race on Dublin Bay. The Leslie Parnell skippered yacht from the Royal Irish Yacht Club leads J109 Dear Prudence in the Rathfarnham Ford Sponsored…
Husband and Wife Team Cathy MacAleavey and Con Murphy will represent Ireland on World Sailing Committees from 2017–2020
World Sailing
Six Irish Sailors, including two from Northern Ireland, will sit on seven World Sailing Committees from 2017 to 2020. Olympians Cathy MacAleavey from the National Yacht Club on Dublin Bay and Bill O'Hara from Ballyholme Yacht Club on Belfast Lough…
Dominant force – A 13–strong J109 fleet will boost Cruisers One numbers on Dublin Bay Sailing Club this season
DBSC
With just over six weeks to the Sherry Fitzgerald sponsored Dublin Bay Sailing Club season the stand–out class of the year looks like Cruisers One where a 20–boat fleet has 13 J/109s among its number. It's an impressive result that bodes…
Crazeee…..Conor Clarke’s Embarr (RIYC) on her way to winning the Melges 24 Worlds by an incredible 31 points. In one of many presentations at the ICRA Conference, Maurice “Prof” McConnell outlined the huge level of dedication needed to achieve this stunning victory. Read all about it on Saturday
ICRA
Afloat.ie’s W M Nixon may have received the Royal Irish YC’s “Maritime Journalist of the Year” Award on Saturday night for his “ability to make even the most advanced and complex sailing issues understandable and of interest not only to…
Up to ten Irish boats may contest the RS Feva World Championships in Holland this July
RS Sailing
Many Irish RS Feva youth sailors have travelled to World Championships over the years and it has been a great experience for many, giving teenagers their first taste of dinghy world championship competition. International fleet sizes tend to be around the…
Cold & Blustery at Fireball DMYC Frostbites
Fireball
For the first Sunday of March it was cold and blustery and the racing scene in Dun Laoghaire, for the Fireballs at least, was conspicuous by the absence of Noel Butler, Stephen Oram or their Fireball, 15061 writes Cormac Bradley.…
The island of Sulu in the southern Philippines is the stronghold of kidnap-for-ransom terror group Abu Sayyaf
Offshore
#Piracy - The body of a German sailor held hostage by militants in the Philippines late last year has been found, as RTÉ News reports. Seventy-year-old Jurgen Kantner was murdered last week by terror group Abu Sayyaf after their ransom…
Annalise Murphy at the launch of the 2017 St Patrick's Festival in Dublin
Annalise Murphy
#AnnaliseMurphy - Annalise Murphy can add the honour of grand marshalling this year’s St Patrick’s Day Parade in Dublin to her list of accolades, as The Irish Times reports. “I’ve spent so many Patrick’s Days away or competing or training,…
ICRA Boat of the Year Joker II skippered by John Maybury leads three Royal Irish club mates Beneteau 34.7 Black Velvet (3471) Leslie Parnell and J109 sisterships Indecision (Declan Hayes, Ronan Moloney, & Patrick Halpenny) and Jump the Gun (John M. Kelly & Michael Monaghan) into a Scotsman’s Bay mark in Sunday’s DBSC Spring Chicken Series race.
DBSC
Just crowned ICRA Boat of the Year Joker II was back on the water this morning in a buoyant DBSC Spring Chicken fleet that enjoyed perfect 10–15 knot northwesterly winds after a number of cancellations over the past three weekends. …
€1,000 First Prize at Royal Cork Yacht Club PY Dinghy Sailing Race
Royal Cork YC
Royal Cork Yacht Club will run its fourth edition of the Horizon Energy Group sponsored PY1000 river race on March 25th. The Portsmouth Yardstick handicap dinghy race takes place on the Owenabue river in Crosshaven Cork, in front of the…
Mark Mansfield (right) collects the boat of the year trophy from ICRA Commodore Simon  McGibney
ICRA
John Maybury's Joker II was named 'Boat of the Year' this afternoon at the ICRA Conference in Limerick. The judges followed the lead given to them by Afloat.ie readers this week in an online poll where Joker II featured prominently.…
Glory days. Asgard II at her best in a Tall Ships Parade in the Baltic in company with the Russian government’s Shtandart, a replica of a warship built by Peter the Great in the early 1700s.
W M Nixon
As we move into March each year, throughout Ireland Tall Ships enthusiasts will wistfully recall that it was in March 1981 that Ireland finally commissioned her own Tall Ship, a national flagship worthy of our aspirations, the Jack Tyrrell-designed and…
Under new rating rules drafted for the IRC European Championships in Cowes in 2018, small boats like this Irish Quarter Tonner Cri Cri will no longer be able to compete
RORC
The significance of the RORC decision to merge the Commodore's Cup with the IRC Europeans in 2018 has extra meaning for Ireland given at least half of the Irish fleet will not be eligible to race due to a ratings…
Cruiser–Racer sailors are gathering in Limerick tomorrow for ICRA's National Conference
ICRA
There will be plenty of items for discussion when ICRA Commodore Simon McGibney opens up a 'round table' discussion on his advertised theme of 'we have to talk about cruiser racing' at the ICRA conference in Limerick tomorrow. A move…
A crowded weather mark in the dramatic last race of the flying Fifteen Worlds in New Zealand
Flying Fifteen
The last day of the 21st Lexus Flying Fifteen World Championship turned out to be a real cliff hanger writes Jonny Fullerton. To finish on a high, Napier delivered on the weather with a warm sunny day and 9 -…
Cruiser Racer action on Dublin Bay in the J109 class. This year there are five major events running between June 9 and July 9
Water Rat
The Irish Cruiser Racer Association must be applauded for providing a platform under the theme: 'we need to talk about cruiser racing' at tomorrow's conference in Limerick. Like an elephant in–the–room, the overcrowded Summer fixtures needs to be urgently addressed…

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

DBSC
National Yacht Club

Featured Associations

Irish Sailing Association
ICRA
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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
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