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Young Irish Topper Sailors Head For China

7th August 2018
Dorothy Matthews took first place in Kinsale Regatta just before heading to Longcheer, Shenzen, China for the Topper World Championship Dorothy Matthews took first place in Kinsale Regatta just before heading to Longcheer, Shenzen, China for the Topper World Championship Photo: Bob Bateman

It’s great to see young sailors enthusiastic about the sport. Watching Topper dinghy sailors training for their big challenge, with determination and focus, is encouraging. The sport has a future if it can hold onto young sailors.

This weekend young sailors of the 11-foot Topper dinghy from Cork, Dublin and Northern Ireland, will set off on the biggest challenge of their lives so far – heading to China to race in the World Topper Championships.

The boat was designed by Ian Proctor and has gained popularity around the world.

Two hundred and sixty-five sailors from twenty-one countries will be competing at the Topper World Championships. The Great Britain Team are sending 65 sailors and amongst the other countries participating will be France, Italy, Hawaii, Germany and a strong contingent from China where the boat has become very popular in the past few years.

The Royal Cork Yacht Club at Crosshaven has 35 Toppers which, its Class Captain says, is the biggest Topper dinghy fleet in Europe. The club is sending a team of fifteen of these young sailors to the Topper World Championships in China, which will be sailed next week. Another 14 Topper sailors are due to travel from Dublin and Northern Ireland clubs.

Diarmuid Lynch is the Class Captain and says their involvement at the World Championships in China will be a good representation of Ireland by young Irish sailors.

The Royal Cork will have the largest club representation and for this week’s Podcast, Diarmuid Lynch has been telling me that it is a great challenge for the young sailors who are hoping to achieve good results for Ireland.

• Listen to the podcast below

Published in Tom MacSweeney
Tom MacSweeney

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Tom MacSweeney

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Tom MacSweeney writes a weekly column for He also presents the maritime radio programme This Island Nation on community radio stations around Ireland.

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