Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

Solo Sailor Tom Dolan Wants to Represent Ireland in the Olympics

6th October 2020
Tom Dolan at the Fastnet Rock. The County Meath sailor went on to finish fifth overall in this year's La Solitare du Figaro race, Ireland's best ever result Tom Dolan at the Fastnet Rock. The County Meath sailor went on to finish fifth overall in this year's La Solitare du Figaro race, Ireland's best ever result

A farmer from County Meath representing Ireland in sailing at the Olympics.

That is what Tom Dolan would like to do, in France in 2024, when sailing at the Games is based in Marseille. The Olympic classes then are intended to include a new mixed two-handed offshore keelboat. The proposed new class has already interested Irish sailors with offshore experience.

Having finished as top non-French sailor in the Figaro Race, the 33-year-old tells me on this week's Afloat Podcast that he worked very hard on himself, particularly his decision-making, in preparation for this year's Figaro Race to achieve his success.

Tom Dolan SailingTom Dolan Sailing on his Figaro 3 yacht

He says that he likes the Figaro Race because it provides such an equal level of competition of sailor and boat against each other, not like "cheque-book" sailing which can dominate a lot of offshore racing.

He talks also about the elitism still perceived towards sailing and contrasts how some Irish yacht and sailing clubs have, he says, a 'keep out' approach in comparison to France. Tom Dolan describes how, in France, sailing is a major sport and how it was opened up there by public investment to anyone who would like to become involved.

Listen to the Podcast below. Also read: Tom Dolan: A People's Hero for Irish Sailing

Tom MacSweeney

About The Author

Tom MacSweeney

Email The Author

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

We've got a favour to ask

More people are reading than ever thanks to the power of the internet but we're in stormy seas because advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. Unlike many news sites, we haven’t put up a paywall because we want to keep our marine journalism open. is Ireland's only full–time marine journalism team and it takes time, money and hard work to produce our content.

So you can see why we need to ask for your help.

If everyone chipped in, we can enhance our coverage and our future would be more secure. You can help us through a small donation. Thank you.

Direct Donation to Afloat button

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

dbsc mainbutton
Howth Yacht Club
Kinsale Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club
Royal Saint George Yacht Club

Featured Brokers

leinster sidebutton

Featured Associations

isora sidebutton

Featured Webcams

Featured Events 2021

vdlr21 sidebutton

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton
quantum sidebutton
watson sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
osm sidebutton

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
mansfield sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
wavelengths sidebutton

Please show your support for Afloat by donating