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It's Really Important for the Round Ireland Yacht Race to Go Ahead

1st June 2020
Tony Kingston - Round Ireland entrant Tony Kingston - Round Ireland entrant Photo: Bob Bateman

I got a strong, supportive reaction to last week’s Podcast in which Glandore Harbour Yacht Club’s Sailing Secretary Hal Andrews, said it was “a nightmare” trying to organise sailing with social distancing. The response to his view was overwhelmingly supportive. 

Hal Emailed me since the Podcast to say that he hoped his assessment was “not too gloomy.” He did not need to worry. It reflected most people’s thinking and mine too.

While the national sailing authority continues to seek changes or exceptions for the boating world – and it is to be hoped they can – until early August social distancing and limits on family units seem to leave solo sailing as the main opportunity.

Young sailors have been taking advantage of that on the waters of Cork Harbour in the glorious weather of the past few days. There have also been a few cruisers, apparently with families, venturing forth.

But I cannot see crewed cruiser racing resuming for some time. I know of very few entirely crewed boats from family units in the same household.

One family boat and crew made news during the week when the Director of the Sovereign's Cup at Kinsale Yacht Club, Tony Kingston, announced the family’s Swan 40, Shindig, would be on the Wicklow Sailing Club Round Ireland start line on Saturday, August 22 - in the two/handed class.

Tony, a Cork Harbour port pilot, is my guest on this week’s Podcast (below)

Tom MacSweeney

About The Author

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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