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Latest Sailing Stories
Self taught Dolan will race with Breton, Francois Jambou, his sailing school colleague from Concarneau in this first race
Solo Sailing
Sole Irish Mini Transat sailor Thomas Dolan of County Meath starts his solo–sailing season tomorrow in a double–handed Lorient Bretagne Sud Mini race.  Racing will get underway officially on Saturday 8 April at 11am, with the start of the 150 nautical…
France’s Guillaume Verdier (left) with VOR's Mark Turner is to lead new design project for  the 14th edition, with Persico Marine selected as lead boatbuilder
Volvo Ocean Race
While final preparations and team announcements continue for the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18, the event’s leadership team are working in parallel to map out the race’s future. The edition after this one, the 14th, will be contested in brand new…
Zhik is onboard with VOR's Team AkzoNobel
CH Marine Chandlery
Innovative specialist sailing apparel manufacturer Zhik has been selected by team AkzoNobel as its official technical clothing partner for the upcoming edition of the Volvo Ocean Race. The crew will race across four oceans and encounter some of the most…
Sailing is a medal winning sport thanks to Annalise Murphy in the Laser Radial
Tokyo 2020
#Tokyo2020 - Funding for Irish sailing and other watersports remains broadly unchanged in Sport Ireland’s allocations for National Governing Bodies in 2017 — though programmes encouraging women in rowing have received a boost. However, the accompanying review of the Irish…
SAVE SHIP: A date of Monday 13 March was given to start dismantling Naomh Eanna, but has not yet happened. The historic Dublin built revited vessel is berthed in Grand Canal Dock Basin's disused Georgian graving dry-dock that are owned by NAMA. There are plans to redevelop this land, and this will require needing Naomh Eanna to be removed.
Historic Boats
#SaveShip! - Time is running out to save iconic Naomh Eanna, a former Aran Islands ferry and freight ship, writes Galway Independent. A voluntary group which hoped to return the ship to Galway into a maritime attraction at the Long…
Foiling Optimist dinghy takes to the air in Sweden
Optimist
Not content with hydrofoiling Moths, Laser dinghies or Mini Transat keelboats, the flying craze hits junior sailing with the news that Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden have figured out how to foil an Optimist dinghy. Seldén has provided the blocks taking Opti…
Annalise Murphy with An Cathaoirleach Cllr Cormac Devlin at The Harold National School in Glasthule, County Dublin
Annalise Murphy
Olympic silver medallist, Annalise Murphy, visited a number of schools in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown yesterday, with An Cathaoirleach of dlr, Cllr Cormac Devlin. Annalise visited the schools to showcase the opportunities to learn sailing along our beautiful coastline. Following the visits…
Sea–Air: The world's first foiling Mini Class
Solo Sailing
2016 might well have been the year of the foil in offshore sailing writes solo sailor Thomas Dolan. Here the sole Irish 'Mini Classe' competitor assesses some of the latest developments from his base in France and asks will a 'foiler'…
2016 J/24 Southern Champions Kilcullen, presented with the Frank Heath Trophy by Royal Cork Yacht Club Admiral John Roche. The Howth Yacht Club K25 crew are 'over age' this year so Kilcullen will be sailed under a new crew at this year's event
J24
This year the J/24 Southern Championships will return to Cork Harbour for the third consecutive year with the added incentive to participate as the ‘Southerns’ will run in conjunction with the ICRA Nationals at the Royal Cork Yacht Club. This…
The three winning Dublin University helms at Clifden were (left to right) Dan Gill, Scott Flanigan and Richard d”Esterre Roberts
Sailor of the Month
The Irish Universities Sailing Association (IUSA) Intervarsities is a major team racing event attended by over 160 sailors across 26 teams. This year’s, staged at the hospitable Clifden Boat Club in the far west of Connemara and hosted by University…
The Shanahan family boat 'Ruth' from the National Yacht Club will defend their 2015 title in June's Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race
Dun Laoghaire Dingle
Volvo Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race (D2D) race organisers at the National Yacht Club have published five compelling reasons why June's race measures up to be the 'perfect family friendly offshore race'. The club is keen to build on the ethos…
49er brothers, Seán and Tadhg Donnelly from the National Yacht Club
Tokyo 2020
A mix of established Rio Olympic campaigners and emerging young talent shared the top podium spots when the 48th Trofeo Princesa Sofia ended Saturday with a brisk 25–knots Mistral offshore wind which brought the 646 boat regatta to spectacular, challenging…
J109 Jedi competing in an ISORA offshore race. The boat is available to charter this season from the INSS
INSS
The Irish National Sailing School J109 yacht is available to charter for Volvo Dun Laoghaire regatta and other Irish sailing events this season.  Jedi is a highly competitive J109 yacht and part of DBSC's ultra–competitive Class One fleet of 20…
Irish youth sailors are competing at the Europa Cup in Lugano, Switzerland
Laser
A team of seven Royal St George Yacht Club Laser sailors, as well as sailors from Schull in West Cork and Foynes  on the Shannon Estuary are competing in the Europa Cup this Easter. The International Laser Class Association run the…
The event took place in Firefly dinghies and consisted of 15 races
Team Racing
Lough Ree Yacht Club youth sailors competing on behalf of Athlone Community College won the Connacht Inter-Schools Team Racing Championship on Saturday 1st April in Carraroe, Co Galway. The event took place in Firefly dinghies and consisted of 15 races,…
Winning J109 skipper John Maybury (left) and Commandant Barry Byrne of the Irish Defence Forces who skippered Joker II to win the Beaufort Cup in Cork last July
ICRA
After a successful 2016 season and another in prospect later this month, the John Maybury's J109 crew from Joker II gathered at their home club in Dun Laoghaire to celebrate victory in the ICRA Nationals, the ICRA Boat of the…

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
RTE Seascapes
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