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Sailing on Saturday with WM Nixon
Located on the fringes of Europe and set in challenging seas, Ireland does not offer an ideal setup for large-output series-production of recreational boats. We lack the economies of scale which are conferred on giant production companies in the crowded…
With a disappointing showing by the Irish squad in the pre-Olympic Regatta in Rio in August, hopes are not high for our performance in the 2016 Sailing Olympics at this light wind city venue, which has already been the subject…
The Afloat.ie website, which is ranked by Google as Ireland’s leading source for the provision of a broad range of recreational and commercial maritime information, news and comment, has been completely updated in recent weeks. Yet though it has acquired…
W M Nixon takes a look back at last weekend’s All Ireland Championship with some thoughts on the unique atmosphere around Dun Laoghaire Harbour on a busy sailing weekend, while giving us an insight into the hugely successful sailing partnership…
This weekend’s two-day All-Ireland Sailing Championship at the National Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire, racing boats of the ISA J/80 SailFleet flotilla, is an easy target for facile criticism. Perhaps because it tries to do so much in the space…
We may be an island nation, but are we a maritime people in our outlook and way of life? It could be reasonably argued that we most definitely aren’t. On last night’s Seascapes, the maritime programme on RTE Radio 1,…
As we near the end of the traditional sailing season, inevitably there’ll be heart-searching among boat owners as to the success and value obtained from their summer afloat – can they really justify the expense of continuing to keep a…
How would you like to undertake an intense course of guaranteed Irish offshore racing training? Start as an absolute beginner on a strange boat in April next year. Dedicate yourself to it. Then by the end of June, the boat…
Killaloe is one of Lough Derg and the River Shannon’s very special places. Photo: W M Nixon
Ireland is a country of seaways, and waterways which are dominated by the majestic River Shannon. On our island, you can never be more than sixty miles from the nearest navigable bit of sea. Add in the myriad of inland…
Fastnet 2015 Was Great Value – It Provided Two Races For The Price Of One
#rorcrfr – Not only did the Rolex Fastnet Race 2015 provide two completely different sailing experiences all in the one event package, but this 90th Anniversary of the Grand National of Offshore Racing was so suffused with historical references and…
Fastnet Becomes Slownet As Jetstream Takes A Holiday
#fastnetrace – The northern jetstream seems to have taken a holiday from Ireland for a few days. This mysterious climatic force - which interacts with the restless brew which develops when large areas of cold and warm air go head…
Sailing In The Olympics – Does Ireland Expect Too Much?
#olympicsailing – We have heard much of how the 2016 Olympiad Sailing Venue in Rio de Janeiro is setting its courses in polluted waters which will constitute a serious health risk to the participants and those who are afloat staging the…
Ireland's Sailors Race In All Parts Of The World, And Face Every Kind Of Weather
#irishsailors – With the coldest, wettest and windiest July finally put astern, Irish sailors of all ages competing at every level at venues near and far – sometimes very far - keep their fingers crossed that summer will manage to…
Sailing The Wild Atlantic Way & Cruising Ireland's West Coast
#wildatlanticway – There's an elemental quality to Ireland's Atlantic seaboard which can be more than matched by the weather the ocean throws at it. In the recent Transatlantic Race, the participants commented – often forcefully - on the extreme sailing…
Restored Irish Sailing Classic Yacht To Go Afloat Near Belfast Today
#classicboats – One of the most significant boats in Irish sailing history is due to be re-launched today after a lengthy restoration. W M Nixon sets the scene, and takes a look at other Irish boat restoration projects on the weekend…
Sailing at Dun Laoghaire Regatta 2015 Has Everything – And Then Some More
#dlregatta – Anyone who thinks they're comprehending all the action and the full story in the continuing, colour-filled and action-packed sailfest in Dublin Bay clearly hasn't been there. You can only grasp quick visual and mental snapshots of specific classes and…

William M Nixon has been writing about sailing in Ireland and internationally for many years, with his work appearing in leading sailing publications on both sides of the Atlantic. He has been a regular sailing columnist for four decades with national newspapers in Dublin, and has had several sailing books published in Ireland, the UK, and the US. An active sailor, he has owned a number of boats ranging from a Mirror dinghy to a Contessa 35 cruiser-racer, and has been directly involved in building and campaigning two offshore racers. His cruising experience ranges from Iceland to Spain as well as the Caribbean and the Mediterranean, and he has raced three times in both the Fastnet and Round Ireland Races, in addition to sailing on two round Ireland records. A member for ten years of the Council of the Irish Yachting Association (now the Irish Sailing Association), he has been writing for, and at times editing, Ireland's national sailing magazine since its earliest version more than forty years ago

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