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“The light of other days…..” The Dublin Bay 21 Naneen sails for the first time in 33 years in the otherworldly illumination of December sunshine on the Shannon Estuary. Photo: Kate Griffiths
Sunshine in December imparts a surreal look to everything it illuminates with its vivid low-angled delineation. And for anyone who happened to be on the Shannon Estuary between Kilrush and Scattery Island on Monday afternoon this week, the sense of…
Naneen, the Dublin Bay 21 sailing on the Shannon Estuary
“They are drop dead gorgeous.” Those words came to mind this week when, amongst the collection of many Emails, phone texts and post that arrive each week there was a photograph which nicely illustrated those words. Stephen Morris sent me…
Michael Murphy's Shelly D sailing in Cork Harbour
I attended the SCORA annual meeting this week. I was seeking a particular answer about boats. The attendance at the meeting was the biggest in some years, a tribute to the work which the South Coast Offshore Racing Association’s Commodore…
The modern Dragon class racing the 2019 Grand Prix at Cannes – an extraordinary transformation for a boat designed 90 years ago to be a weekend cruiser and club racer in the Swedish islands around Gothenburg.
The International Dragon Class and Kinsale seem to have been made for each other. When the Dragon Gold Cup is staged at the glossy south coast port next September, there will undoubtedly be a natural harmony to the event. With…
The Bransfield Memorial
The well-known beacon at the entrance to Baltimore Harbour in West Cork has provided the idea for the memorial to the Irishman who discovered Antarctica. In the cold, icy waters of the Southern Ocean, Edward Bransfield was keeping a lookout…
The 40th anniversary Round Ireland Race from Wicklow on June 20th will be an “alternative highlight” of the 2020 season, with fresh sponsorship from SSE Renewables. The 2018 winner, Baraka GP (a Ker 43), is seen here sweeping past Wicklow Head shortly after the start. The middle third of the race saw conditions go against her, and at one stage off the north coast of Mayo she was lying 23rd overall. But in the later stages, skipper Niall Dowling (RIYC) and navigator Ian Moore called the tactics to such good effect that Baraka took line honours and won overall. Photo: Afloat.ie/David O’Brien
Nobody seems yet to have nominated the already very special 2020 as The Year of the Sailing Club, or more accurately as The Year of the Irish Sailing Club. So here in Afloat.ie we’re just going to do that very…
Flying the flag for Ireland, asymmetric style. The US and UK in downwind dicing with Ireland, represented by Royal Cork YC and skippered by Anthony O’Leary, in the New York YC 20-team international series in September at Newport, RI. Ireland finished third overall in a series raced in the new Melges IC 37s, designed by Mark Mills of Wicklow
The Irish sailing and boating season seems to get longer and more complex with every passing year, yet the vast majority of us would like it all to happen on days of floating summery perfection, with the ideal weight of…
Lough Ree's new lifeboat
As a new lifeboat arrived in Lough Ree on Tuesday an envelope arrived on my desk from the RNLI, painting a perspective of the lifeboat service from a different viewpoint. As Afloat reported earlier, the new Atlantic 85 on Athlone’s…
The Rolex Men’s Sailor of the Year 2019, 15-year-old Marco Gradoni of Italy, on his way to winning his third Optimist Worlds in a row at Antigua in July
What’s with today’s teenagers? Time was when your average teen aspired to sleep for 24 hours every day. The reason they slept for 24 hours every day was there were only 24 hours in the day. Move the dial-up to…
Round the World Sailor Damian Foxall Catches Up on Learning at Poolbeg
When Henry Cromwell in 1654 as then Chief Justice of Ireland, decided to rid the city of Dublin of everyone of Irish blood by ordering them to move two miles outside the capital, his decision gave the impetus which created…
Steve Morris
Following the interest in last week’s Podcast on the question – Why Do We Own Boats – and the views on the topic expressed by Brother Anthony Keane of Glenstal Abbey, I’ve been intrigued by the number of people who…
(Top) The yachts of the Water Club of the Harbour of Cork on fleet manoeuvres in 1738, as painted by Peter Monamy. Founded in 1720 with just 25 members, the club’s early programme at sea was to follow Sailing Orders with signals by flags from the Admiral’s yacht. But by the 1760s, the occasional race was being held, and by the 1780s racing was a more regular part of the programme Reproduced by courtesy RCYC and (above) Royal Cork 1720 Sportsboats at speed. The Water Club had become the Royal Cork YC by 1831, and having been unique at its foundation in 1720, it had now become part of a much broader development of sailing in both its cruising and racing forms. By the 1970s-1990s, Crosshaven had become a remarkable nucleus for advanced ideas, and the Royal Cork 1720 Sportsboats of 1994 became international trend-setters Photo: Bob Bateman
You thought 2019 was quite the busy sailing year in Ireland? Believe me folks, after writing last Saturday’s marathon review of one very special season, we went through the weekend in a state of mental meltdown which wasn’t helped by…
Brother Anthony Keane
Scribbler, my Sigma 33 yacht, was hauled ashore this week. Now she stands in her cradle in Castlepoint Boatyard in Crosshaven in Cork Harbour for her out-of-the-water winter rest. It is the annual end-of-season ritual. There are owners who don’t…
Summertime on Dublin Bay. In a season of very mixed weather, the biennial Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta managed its usual trick of finding a useful little bit of precious summer.
With two World Championships on the agenda, and Ireland’s biggest sailing event – the Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta - making its biennial appearance at mid-season, 2019’s sailing programme couldn’t be anything other than interesting as it also included the increasingly…
The veteran IMOCA 60 4myplanet which Mayo’s Joan Mulloy will be co-skippering with Alexia Barrier in next weekend’s 12,000 mile Transat Jacques Vabre from Le Havre to Bahia in Brazil
Solo sailor Joan Mulloy of Mayo has teamed up as co-skipper with France’s Alexia Barrier on the latter’s veteran IMOCA 60 4Myplanet to become the only all-female crew in the 30-strong IMOCA 60 Class in the 12,000 mile Transat Jacques…
Adrian O'Connell at Kilrush Boatyard
When I walked into Adrian O’Connell’s office in Kilrush Boatyard on the edge of the Shannon Estuary in County Clare, a photograph on the wall caught my attention – a boat sailing at speed, red sails dramatic atop a black…

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