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Tom MacSweeney
Rating is what we use in IRC to assess a boat’s potential performance – the ability, or lack of ability of the helmsman and crew is not included writes Peter Wykeham-Martin, Chairman of the IRC Congress
Tom MacSweeney
The IRC Yearbook arrived in the post as I prepared to write this week’s Podcast. It is sent out together with your notice to renew your Handicap for the season ahead. Only, ‘oops’, the word ‘Handicap’ is no longer acceptable.…
The rise in common dolphin strandings is alarming wildlife enthusiasts
Tom MacSweeney
For the past six years, the first few weeks of the year have seen an increase in the number of dolphins being washed up on the Irish coastline. The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group is making a determined effort this…
Enda O'Coineen on the bow of Kilcullen Voyager
Tom MacSweeney
“I’m that bad nobody would come with me….” That’s what Enda O Coineen told me when he confirmed that he will be completing his round-the-world voyage which he started as part of the Vendee Globe Race, alone to complete the…
SCORA Commodore – Kieran O'Connell
Tom MacSweeney
After a few negative years, resulting in some despondency about the future of cruiser racing, the annual meeting of SCORA, the South Coast Offshore Racing Association, had a more positive atmosphere, with a good attendance of skippers, boat owners and…
Are Sea Area Forecasts Necessary?
Tom MacSweeney
In this digital age, with so many available resources providing sea area weather forecasts, is there still a need for national radio to broadcast these forecasts? I heard an RTE Radio Presenter asking a Met Eireann meteorologist on-air whether there…
Kieran O'Connell (third from left) competing onboard a Royal Cork keelboat
ICRA
Interest in keelboat racing is increasing. Cruiser racing is on the way back! So says the Royal Cork Yacht Club’s Rear Admiral for Keelboats, Kieran O’Connell, writes Tom MacSweeney. Clubs around the coast have experienced a fall-off in racing numbers at…
Antarctic Search and Rescue base
Tom MacSweeney
There’s increasing concern about cruise ships in the Antarctic and whether people could be rescued should one get into trouble amidst the ice. 300 ships traverse that Polar region, with nearly a quarter-of-a-million tourist visitors aboard from November to March…
The logistics of handling the large amounts of fibreglass hulls from abandoned or derelict vessels poses a significant challenge
Tom MacSweeney
The International Maritime Organisation, that’s the United Nations agency for safety at sea, has acknowledged, the first time this has been publicised, that a large number of abandoned or no-longer usable fibreglass vessels - including fishing vessels and leisure craft…
Top - the new Irish Ferries William Butler Yeats and above the Navy's new patrol vessel William Butler Yeats
Tom MacSweeney
Hello and you’re welcome to the weekly MacSweeney Podcast… The procedures and practices involved in the naming of ships once appeared to be the product of evolution and tradition, then became the choice of politicians – at least as far…
Edward Bransfield commemoration committee at Ballinacurra – Liam O'Riordan ,Ann Wilson, Eugene Furlong & Jim Wilson
Tom MacSweeney
Ireland is a nation which has been slow to recognise its maritime resources and its international maritime achievements made by Irish sailors. This I was reminded about again this week. But there are indications of changes for the better, driven…
Kitack Lim, Secretary General of the IMO
Ports & Shipping
“Connecting Ships, Ports and People” is the theme of World Maritime Day which is today, September 28, as marked by the International Maritime Organisation, the United Nations maritime agency. Does anybody notice anything being done officially by the Government here,…
This boat hasn't move in a long time
Tom MacSweeney
I don’t mean abandon in emergency at sea, I mean leave them to rot away in boatyards or on rivers or harbour moorings or in boatyards .. to ignore them …. deliberately forget about them …perhaps hoping never to be…
A Humpback Whale breaching in Irish waters
Tom MacSweeney
To mariners the sound of the sea is the sound of life and this week I heard some of the most amazing sounds ever recorded underwater. ‘The song of the Humpback Whale,’amazed me. It is the sound the males use,…
Tom MacSweeney's Scribbler white sail racing in Cork Harbour
Tom MacSweeney
Hearing about the open morning on Sunday, the 24th of September at the Royal St.George YC in Dun Laoghaire where Sigma 33 Class Captain Paddy Maguire wants to raise more interest in Sigmas, brought back how I became interested in…
Marine Biologist Lucy Hunt from County Kerry
Volvo Ocean Race
Kerry will have a dominant presence in this year’s Volvo Round the World Race. Three of the Kingdom’s notable maritime figures are involved and, with Olympian Annalise Murphy also sailing, there will be strong Irish interest, writes Tom MacSweeney. Biologist…
The annual sailing race from Cobh to Blackrock once marked the end of the sailing season in Cork Harbour
Cork Harbour
69 yachts have entered for the Cobh-to-Blackrock Race tomorrow writes Tom MacSweeney. This is the annual sailing race from Cobh to Blackrock which once marked the end of the sailing season in Cork Harbour. It no longer is that end-of-season…
Who is Your Sailor of the Year 2017?
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