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Cork Harbour Yacht Clubs Decide to Continue Combining

8th November 2018
Cork Harbour racing in this month's Royal Cork Winter league Cork Harbour racing in this month's Royal Cork Winter league Credit: Bob Bateman

Hello and welcome to my weekly Podcast ….Tom MacSweeney here….

The three Cork Harbour yacht clubs – the Royal Cork at Crosshaven, Monkstown Bay and Great Island Sailing Clubs – have decided that the format of a combined clubs racing league, first held this Summer – has been successful enough to continue it next year, but there will be changes.

The newly-formed Great Island Club, based in Cobh and emanating from Cove Sailing Club, following issues which arose there over that club’s planned marina, was the driving force in creating the league. It brought around 30 cruisers from the three clubs racing together in Whitesail starting last June, though numbers later decreased during the Summer in the weekly Friday night racing. This was put down to other events, such as Cork Week and the annual trek to West Cork waters during the Summer months. The three clubs shared race administration.

There was also, however, some feeling in clubs, such as Monkstown and at the RCYC, that the combined league had taken over from individual club events. Monkstown’s Cruiser Class, which had gathered on Thursday nights, had no club racing apart from its ‘At Home’ Day and at Crosshaven the combined league replaced the club’s own popular weekly whitesail racing. Both clubs incorporated results for their members within the combined league, to award their own club prizes.

A review meeting by the three clubs has agreed on changes for next year to accommodate those views.

Beginning on Friday May 31, there will be a “June League” which will be run by the Great Island Club and on three further June Fridays, 7th, 14th and 21st. There will be no race on June 28, because of the Sovereigns Cup in Kinsale.

In July the combined league will be raced on Saturdays, July 6, 13, 20, 27 and incorporate club events such as the Monkstown Bay ‘At Home’. It is hoped that this will increase participation in such events. MBSC will run the racing in July.

There will be no combined harbour league racing in August, when many boats head west such as to Calves Week.

In September the league will resume on Saturdays, under RCYC administration, on the 7th, 14th, 21st and 28th.

This approach provides individual clubs with the opportunity to resume holding their own weekly evening racing, such as the RCYC Friday nights and Monkstown Bay events.

Representatives from the three clubs met at Monkstown Bay SC and agreed also that the combined league should include spinnaker racing, additional to white sail. A single set of Race Instructions will be agreed for the league and racing starts will again be in the vicinity of No.9 buoy off Whitegate Refinery jetty which was the location this year.

The proposals will come before club annual meetings. There may be some adjustments, but the outline schedule has been agreed.

Tom MacSweeney

About The Author

Tom MacSweeney

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Tom MacSweeney writes a weekly column for He also presents the radio programme Maritime Ireland on radio stations around Ireland.

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