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Cork Harbour To Be Filled With Sails This Weekend

13th September 2019
Cruiser racing in the Cobh to Blackrock Race in Cork Harbour Cruiser racing in the Cobh to Blackrock Race in Cork Harbour Photo: Bob Bateman

This will be an exceptionally busy sailing weekend in Cork Harbour.

Cork Dinghy Fest, the Cobh-to-Blackrock Race, the National 18s Championships, the Irish Multihull Championships, the RS 200, 400 and Feva Nationals, the Mirror Southerns, the 29er Southerns and the Rankin ‘World’ Championships will all be raced.

What a weekend of sail to be seen in the harbour and the weather indications are good.


The Royal Cork Yacht Club at Crosshaven is the organising base for Dinghy Fest, Cove Sailing Club are the Blackrock Race organisers.

Dinghy Fest Su 3472Dinghy Fest racing in 2018 Photo: Bob Bateman

This will be the third running of Dinghy Fest which has reached out to all dinghy classes to take part and show the strength of this aspect of the sport. “Sailing friendship is the key to keeping Irish dinghy sailing alive,” according to Dinghy Fest Organiser and former All-Ireland sailing champion, Alex Barry. That approach has received a positive response.

"What a weekend of sail to be seen in the harbour and the weather indications are good"

The revival of the Rankin Class, a stalwart of harbour sailing for many years is thriving thanks to the work of Maurice Kidney from Cobh and Conor English from Crosshaven. They are hoping for 20 Rankins in Dinghy Fest, which would be the biggest turn-out of this class for very many years.

They will sail, as we revealed on last week, for the Rankin ‘world cup’ which was originally raced at Ardmore in County Waterford in the 90s when that coastal village had a fleet of Rankins, many of them Cork Summertime visitors. The first three Rankins built are due to take part. The cup has been brought to Cork and the event is eagerly anticipated.

Cobh to Blackrock Race

Cruisers will race from Cobh to Blackrock, the overall prize being the Moonduster Trophy for IRC boats. The SafeTRX Trophy will go to the fastest boat. There will also be prizes for IRC, ECHO and Standard Class. The start area will be in the ‘Cobh Roads’ with First Gun at 1500 (3pm) for Whitesails and Standard Class and Class 1, 2, 3 to follow with Spinnakers, their usage depending as usual on the wind direction.

They can be a very colourful sight heading upriver if the wind is suitable.

Race organisers, Cove Sailing Club, say that results will only be given to boats which register on their website, with the deadline for entry tonight (Thursday).

Cork Port is offering free berthing at the city marina. Prizegiving in Goldbergs at 1800.

In times past, this race traditionally marked the end of the sailing season in Cork Harbour. It became a more serious race when it got South Coast Offshore Racing Association recognition.

• There is more about this race on the Podcast here

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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