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Latest Sailing Stories
Classic boat action at Cowes
Historic Boats
The sun returned on day three of Panerai British Classic Boat Week where the fleets completed race five of the series, followed by the traditional Ladies Race. Not only had the sun reappeared, but the wind had moderated too and…
Simon Henning's Alice led the three Farr 36s in IRC Three
RORC
The second ever IRC European Championship took place in the south of France over four days last week for an international fleet of 53 boats. While last year the inaugural event was incorporated into Cork Week, this year's IRC European…
Martin Byrne (IRL 201) competing on day two of the Edinburgh Cup in Cowes
Dragon
What a difference a day makes! After the opening day's torrential rain and strong winds, day two of the Dragon Edinburgh Cup 2017, hosted by the Island Sailing Club, Cowes, produced light airs, brightening skies and a complete reversal of…
A variety of handcrafted currachs will be used, including fifteen Dunfanaghy currachs in the Meitheal Mara youth race
Cork Harbour
Organised by Meitheal Mara, this Thursday 13th of July will see dozens of young people from the Bádoireacht programme take part in a heated Youth Race between Blackrock and Cork City in Cork Harbour. Starting at 18:30 from the newly…
DBSC Beneteau 211 racing on Dublin Bay
DBSC
B21S - 1. ISOLDE (B MULKEEN & J MARTIN), 2. VENTUNO (R FOGARTY) CRUISERS 3 Tuesday - 1. Marlena (Grzegorz Kalinecki), 2. Grasshopper II (K & J Glynn), 3. Saki (McCormack/Ryan/Ryan) FIREBALL - 1. No Name (S Oram), 2. Clandog…
Royal St. George's (from left) Martin Byrne, Conor Byrne and Pedro Andrade in the first race of the Dragon Edinburgh Cup
Dragon
Royal St. George's Martin Byrne, fresh from British South Coast victory last week, is in the hunt for the Dragon Edinburgh Cup 2017 after two well sailed opening races for the sole Dublin Bay boat yesterday. Byrne is in ninth place…
The handsome McGruer ketch Cuilaun – whose CV includes a Transatlantic Race Class Win – is headed for the Glandore Classic Regatta 2017 from July 23rd to July 28th
Historic Boats
With just twelve days to go to the start of the 25th Anniversary Glandore Classic Boat Regatta 2017 from July 23rd to July 28th, Glandore Harbour Yacht Club are swinging all systems into action with the extra muscle provided by…
Kingstown 200 Bicentenary Rowing Race Prizegiving (l to r) Cathy McAleavy (Classic Race Coordinator) Chris Doorly (St Michaels Rowing Club) Paula Keating, Leona Franey, Marc Nichols, Michael Sillery, Michael Dunne of the Wicklow Rowing Club and Tim Goodbody (Volvo Race Director)
Volvo Regatta
With a record entry of 123 crews, yesterday's St. Michael's Rowing Club regatta added a real splash of colour to the back of the West Pier in Dun Laoghaire. This year's annual event for the local club was scheduled to…
Waiting for the wind at the Topper Irish Championships on Larne Lough
Topper
Hosted by East Antrim Boat Club over three days in July - 7th to 9th - the Blazin Digital sponsored Topper Class Irish National Championship was sailed on Larne Lough in testing conditions writes Tom Jobling. Headed up by local…
Kenefick in full flight in his new Moth dinghy at Lake Garda
Moth
With the Moth World Championships fast approaching with 240 boats expected in Lake Garda, there's been plenty of foiling practise going on at the Italian lake this week.  The championships has attracted several Irish boats, including national champion Rory Fitzpatrick…
15 Mermaids took part in VDLR 2017 in what was also their Leinster Championship
Volvo Regatta
The 2017 Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta saw the return of the Mermaid fleet in impressive numbers to Dublin Bay for the first time in a number of years. 15 Mermaids took part in what was also their Leinster Championship from…
Ireland's sole entry at the Dragon Edinburgh Cup, Martin Byrne, (IRL216) racing in the South Coast Championships. Byrne, is sailing this week  at the Edinburgh Cup with his son and past Irish Laser National Champion Conor Byrne and top professional Dragon crew Pedro Andrade
Dragon
Martin Byrne's Jaguar Sailing Team won the British South Coast Championship as the warm up event ahead of the Edinburgh Cup where racing starts today on the Solent just off Cowes, Isle of Wight. Only three races were completed in…
Fifty years of service – Willie Lee (left) with former Crosshaven Boatyard Managing Director Wally Morrissey at the party on Friday
Boatyards
A very pleasant nostalgia-laden party in The Oar pub in Crosshaven on Friday night honoured shipwright Willie Lee, who was retiring after fifty years with Crosshaven Boatyard writes W M Nixon. In addition to colleagues past and present, the attendance…
Squib sailing at the VDLR
Squib
Dun Laoghaire regatta was the highlight of the celebrations of the 200th anniversary of the laying of the foundation stone for the great harbour of refuge in Kingstown in 1817. The regatta involved 475 boats in 35 classes including the…
Eight metre yachts Helen, Athena, Osborne and Saskia take part in the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge 2017
Historic Boats
The opening race day of Panerai British Classic Boat Week 2017 was an absolute scorcher with barely a cloud in the sky and glorious sunshine showing the fifty-one participating classic yachts off to absolute perfection. The regatta opened with a…
The 2017 RS Feva Nationals take place over 3 days from 14 to 16 July at the Royal St. George Yacht Club.
RS Sailing
It's lining up to be an exciting week for youth sailing in Dun Laoghaire. The 2017 RS Feva Nationals take place over 3 days from 14 to 16 July at the Royal St. George Yacht Club. As a warm up…

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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Featured Associations

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ICRA
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Featured Sailing School

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Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
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