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Enda O'Coineen on the bow of Kilcullen Voyager
Tom MacSweeney
“I’m that bad nobody would come with me….” That’s what Enda O Coineen told me when he confirmed that he will be completing his round-the-world voyage which he started as part of the Vendee Globe Race, alone to complete the…
The haven under the hill. Howth will be pulling out all the stops to make its new Wave Regatta from June 1st to 4th 2018 a user-friendly success
W M Nixon
A successful new development in the national sailing programme will inevitably be something of a revolution. Yet if those managing the event handle it in the right way, the changeover can take place without people thinking that anything really revolutionary…
SCORA Commodore – Kieran O'Connell
Tom MacSweeney
After a few negative years, resulting in some despondency about the future of cruiser racing, the annual meeting of SCORA, the South Coast Offshore Racing Association, had a more positive atmosphere, with a good attendance of skippers, boat owners and…
The Eric Tabarly-skippered trimaran Cote d’Or III racing to Dun Laoghaire in the Tag Heuer Round Europe Race 1987
W M Nixon
In a year which has seen sailing headlines frequently dominated by uniquely French events like the Vendee Globe, the Mini-Transat and the Transat Jacques Vabre, we find ourselves analyzing yet again just why France’s special take on our sport seems…
Are Sea Area Forecasts Necessary?
Tom MacSweeney
In this digital age, with so many available resources providing sea area weather forecasts, is there still a need for national radio to broadcast these forecasts? I heard an RTE Radio Presenter asking a Met Eireann meteorologist on-air whether there…
George David’s all-conquering Rambler 88 at Wicklow Head shortly after the start of the Volvo Round Ireland Race 2016. 2018’s staging of this biennial classic will be the 20th edition, and its international significance is recognized with bonus points for the RORC Championship
W M Nixon
At least two different viewpoints may be taken on the remarkable and very long history of sailing in Ireland. Either you see it as a wonderful heritage, which should be celebrated with gala anniversaries, and whatever you’re having yourself, at…
Ludde Ingvall’s extremely individual 98ft CQS aboard which Ireland’s 2013 “Sailor of the Year” David Kenefick of Cork will be racing the RORC Transatlantic
W M Nixon
With three major yet very different marathon sailing events crossing the Atlantic this month, it’s clear that the once decidedly quirky and often eccentric devotees of offshore and ocean racing are becoming mainstream. This is further reinforced by the confirmation…
Kieran O'Connell (third from left) competing onboard a Royal Cork keelboat
ICRA
Interest in keelboat racing is increasing. Cruiser racing is on the way back! So says the Royal Cork Yacht Club’s Rear Admiral for Keelboats, Kieran O’Connell, writes Tom MacSweeney. Clubs around the coast have experienced a fall-off in racing numbers at…
The public face of Fintan Cairns – at the helm (left) of the ICRA Support RIB with Barry Rose and Mike Broughton during the Anthony O’Leary-led 2014 re-taking of the Commodore’s Cup
W M Nixon
He was in the key role of Commodore when Dublin Bay Sailing Club was successful in implementing the changeover from pier to Committee Boat starts which involved the complete re-structuring of its course programme in the Bay, and many other…
At Ballyholme on Belfast Lough in April, the biggest-ever Irish Sailing Youth Pathway Nationals saw Ewan McMahon of Howth emerging supreme in the elite fleet in the Laser Radial, making him April’s Junior Sailor of the Month
W M Nixon
The Afloat.ie “Sailor of the Month” awards were established twenty-one years ago in 1996. But as the adjudicators have always been allowed an element of flexibility, sometimes there have been more than one award in a particular month, so any…
The sailing dream realised for Westport’s Joan Mulloy. But now she reckons she has to give her sailing talent a real racing edge, and in January she’ll be doing an intensive offshore racing and training course with the legendary Tanguy Leglatin at Lorient in South Brittany.
W M Nixon
In an exceptional week for Irish international offshore sailors, the Michael Boyd-skippered Lisa has been confirmed as both the RORC Points Champion and the Boat of the Year, while the Damian Foxall-crewed Vestas 11th Hour Racing has emerged as the…
Antarctic Search and Rescue base
Tom MacSweeney
There’s increasing concern about cruise ships in the Antarctic and whether people could be rescued should one get into trouble amidst the ice. 300 ships traverse that Polar region, with nearly a quarter-of-a-million tourist visitors aboard from November to March…
(Top) The essence of summer sailing for the Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta, which also celebrated the Bicentenary of the Harbour. The classic restored Dublin Bay 24 Periwinkle (Chris Craig and David Espey) and the likewise restored 1897-vintage 37ft Myfanwy (Rob Mason) racing neck and neck towards the in-harbour finish. Photo: David O’Brien/Afloat.ie (Above) Another side of 2017’s sailing. 2016 All-Ireland Champion Helm Alex Barry of Monkstown Bay SC revelling in brisk conditions at the Royal Cork’s successful Dinghyfest 2017. Event organizer Nin O’Leary had put in such good work beforehand that he was able to take a day out to go to England and win the huge-fleet Round the Island Race. Photo: Robert Bateman
W M Nixon
While sailing is now a year-round interest, and for many a year-round activity too, the notion of a traditional season is natural for anyone who lives in Ireland. Admittedly, there are times when we seem to be experiencing the four…
The logistics of handling the large amounts of fibreglass hulls from abandoned or derelict vessels poses a significant challenge
Tom MacSweeney
The International Maritime Organisation, that’s the United Nations agency for safety at sea, has acknowledged, the first time this has been publicised, that a large number of abandoned or no-longer usable fibreglass vessels - including fishing vessels and leisure craft…
Grind on…..Annalise Murphy putting in the work on Turn the Tide on Plastic
W M Nixon
There is a time and a season to all things, and in some years, that time comes earlier than others. Ireland has been getting away with it in remarkable style in recent weeks, putting through 2017’s Autumn sailing fixtures in…
Mark Mansfield – his expression may seem impassive, but he is at his most alive and alert when racing a sailing boat
W M Nixon
Mark Mansfied of Cork has been a major presence in Irish and international sailing for decades. With his considerable height and presence, and air of being intensely focused on the task in hand, he is at the core of any…

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