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The latest letter from Howth Yacht Club Commodore Ian Byrne reminds that tomorrow (Friday 31 January) is the last day to get on the entry list for the 125th anniversary cruise in company.

As previously reported on, the cruise to Scotland is planned from 10 to 26 June and follows the same format as the club’s centenary cruise in 1995.

While there is plenty of flexibility to visit other ports or anchorages en route, the cruise is limited to 30 boats so any crews still considering taking part should act fact. Questions should be directed to Cyril Geran.

The commodore’s latest letter also includes details about the marina’s switch to road diesel, access around upcoming pier works and recruitment for a new professional club manager.

For more see the HYC website HERE.

Published in Howth YC
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Barry Hayes from UK Sailmakers Ireland begins a new series of talks with Top Tips For Sailors next Thursday 16 January at Howth Yacht Club from 7.30pm.

Members and guests alike are welcome to attend the two-part session which will cover both optimisation for racing or cruising vessels, and learning how to service your deck hardware — overalls recommended.

Barry will also visit the Royal St George on Thursday 30 January (time TBC) and Kinsale Yacht Club on Thursday 13 February at 7.30pm.

UK Sailmakers Flyer

Published in UK Sailmakers Ireland

Howth RNLI is hosting a special Lifeboat Supporters’ Evening tonight, Tuesday 19 November, from 7.30pm at Howth Yacht Club.

Those attending will learn the latest news and updates from the Howth lifesaving volunteers, as well as see video of their vital rescue efforts.

RNLI Christmas cards and souvenirs will also be on sale to raise funs for the charity that saves lives at sea. All are welcome to attend.

This coming Thursday (21 November) there will also be a lifeboat evening at King Sitric restaurant, with a six course local seasonal menu and a lively auction in aid of Howth RNLI. Details are on Facebook HERE.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Plans are being developed for next year’s celebrations to mark the 125th anniversary of organised racing in Howth and the establishment of one of Howth Yacht Club’s founding clubs, namely Howth Sailing Club, in 1895.

The club says it will be holding a number of events that should cater for different tastes, so all members should find something that will appeal to them.

Apart from the normal events that are run each year, there will be special events:

  • January 1, 2020: The year’s celebrations will formally be launched at a reception on New Year’s Day
  • April 16/19: Irish Sailing Youth Pathway National Championships
  • June 10/26: Cruise to Scotland (see outline programme below)
  • May 29/31: Wave Regatta, building on last year’s highly successful event
  • July: Dinghy Fun Weekend
  • July: Sunflower raft-up
  • August 9/14: Fireball World Championships. This event will attract almost 100 boats from all over the world
  • August: 125th Family Weekend

Howth Yacht Club is also running a competition to pick a logo that will be used alongside its famous anchor to mark all events taking place during the year.

Entries are to be sent to Paddy Judge, Vice Commodore, in sealed envelopes. At this time four entries have been received and the competition closes on Saturday 31 August, with the winning design unveiled at the Volunteers’ Night on 19 September, which will have a reception to outline the plans for 2020.

Among these plans are the anniversary cruise to Scotland next June. The 100-year anniversary cruise to the sheltered waters in the Firth of Clyde in 1995 was a tremendous success with unforgettable memories, so Howth Yacht Club has decided to keep to the same format to mark its 125th in 2020:

  • June 10: Depart Howth
  • June 12: Muster Bangor
  • June 13: In Bangor, with dinner in Royal Ulster Yacht Club
  • June 17: Muster in Campbelltown
  • June 20: Muster in East Loch Tarbert or Portavadie with Dinner
  • June 22: Muster in Rothsay
  • June 24: Muster in Kip, with dinner
  • June 26: Muster in Troon, with final dinner

Following that, participants will make individual passage home to Howth or stay on for further cruising.

Howth Yacht Club says it has been successful in obtaining discounts in a number of marinas, which will help keep the cost as low as possible.

Applications for places on the cruise are now being accepted. As part of the application and to allow your committee to book ahead, the club requires a non-refundable deposit of €200.

The cruise is limited to 30 boats and places will be allocated in the order in which the applications (with deposit) are received. If more than 30 apply, they will be put on a waiting list.

At this time, 16 boats have already indicated an interest in taking part in the cruise, so if you would like to take part please complete an application form in the HYC administration office. You will need to provide the following:

  • Name of Member
  • Name of boat, plus dimensions
  • Potential number of crew
  • And the €200 deposit
Published in Howth YC
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Howth Yacht Club is calling on boat owners to be ‘mini-hosts’ as part of the special marina party this coming Saturday 27 July.

The club promises “a great night” that kicks off with fireworks at 10pm and continues with guest DJs playing music from the deck of the flagship committee boat Star Point, and various parties on members’ (and visitors’) boats throughout the night.

Boat owners and crew are invited to make the most of their own individual decorations, drinks, food, lighting and music for a night of fun and hospitality aboard all boats — followed by the Disco Sunday Brunch to cure any sore heads!

There will also be prizes on the night for the best decorated boat, best party boat, best hospitality and best dressed crew.

Register your boat online if you’re joining in the fun to indicate numbers attending.

Published in Howth YC
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Howth Yacht Club’s Rocco Wright scored a tremendous result for Ireland as he placed 10th in the Optimist Worlds in Antigua earlier this week.

He was followed closely in the final standings by 13th-placed James Dwyer Matthews of the Royal Cork/Kinsale in the event won by the new three-time champion Marco Gradoni of Italy.

The rest of the Irish team are also to be commended for their finishes in a field comprising 255 young sailors: Sam Ledoux (National YC) was 70th overall, Luke Turkey (HYC) 100th and Ben O’Shaughnessy (RCYC) 159th.

In the glow of that achievement for the nation, the International Optimist Dinghy Association of Ireland (IODAI) has decamped to Waterford Harbour for the Optimist Munster Championships from today, Saturday 29 July.

The event is open to all boats of the IODAI across Regatta, Junior and Senior fleets, with the Notice of Race, Sailing Instructions and Supplementary Instructions available on the Waterford Harbour Sailing Club website.

Published in Optimist

Howth Yacht Club’s Laura Dillon is among six women profiled by the Royal Ocean Racing Club ahead of their participation in this year’s Rolex Fastnet Race.

While crew lists for August’s race are not yet finalised, at present just over 10% of those competing in the biennial voyage will be women — more than double the rate of races in the 1990s.

The RORC cites role models such as Tracy Edwards, Ellen MacArthur and Dee Caffari as a reason for this increase in female participation — but notes that opportunities for women at all levels to go sailing are increasing “too slowly”.

For 40-year-old Laura Dillon, it was a high competitive drive from a young age that saw her progress from dinghies to 1720 Sportsboats to Beneteau Firsts in both the Round Ireland and Fastnet races.

This year she swaps the helm of Harry J Heijst’s S&S 41, Winsome, for a place on the four-strong crew of Conor Fogerty’s Figaro Beneteau 3, Raw — one of only three of the new offshore class in the race.

She observes that women’s participation in the Fastnet as enjoyed a considerable step up in the last generation — but says there is a direct parallel with women’s positions in the business world, and believes it will take another generation yet before their numbers increase substantially.

The Rolex Fastnet Race website has much more on this story HERE.

Published in Fastnet

Howth Yacht Club has paid tribute to long-time member John Leonard, who died last week.

Leonard sailed at HYC from the early 1980s to 2010, competing for two decades in the Cruiser III class with his Beneteau First 2, Birgitz, and later a Beneteau First 26, The Dawn Treader. He also sailed alongside the late Liam (Bill) Gallagher for three decades. has Leonard’s death noice and details of funeral arrangements.

Published in Howth YC
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Some dazzling performances in the week’s final races saw Howth Yacht Club youth prospect Jamie McMahon sail 11 points clear of his closest rival to clinch the U21 Laser Radial title at the Laser European Championships in Porto yesterday (Saturday 25 May).

It’s been a high-achieving month for April’s Junior Sailor pick for, as he and his sister Eve both qualified for the Irish Youth Sailing Team to compete at the Youth Worlds in Poland this July — the first Irish sibling pair to do so.

Jamie MedalHowth's Jamie McMahon on the Laser European Championship podium in Porto Photo: Irish Sailing/Twitter

Jamie McMahon in action | Photo: Sailing Energy/World SailingJamie McMahon in action | Photo: Sailing Energy/World Sailing

Elsewhere, Finn Lynch (National YC) nabbed 18th place in the senior men’s division while Ewan McMahon — Jamie and Eve’s older brother — held on to his respectable 24th position in his first senior European championship. Liam Glynn was 78th.

In other results, Aisling Keller (Lough Derg) and Aoife Hopkins (HYC) were close in the final tally at 43rd and 45th respectively in the women’s Laser Radial, while Tom Fox (HYC) placed 26th in the U21 Men’s Laser Radial.

Published in Laser

The first of the season’s ‘Fun Fridays’ at Howth Yacht Club takes place this coming Friday 17 May — where the first 20 entries for junior sailors and their friends will get to spend an evening on the club’s J/80s.

Fun Fridays are back again after a successful summer last year, with HYC members getting to share their time out on the water with their families and friends.

This year’s season runs on selected Fridays up to 23 August.

With each event commencing at 6pm, there will be a broad range of activities for all ages and abilities to enjoy, ranging from supervised sailing to stand-up paddleboarding, kayaking, and even a ‘pirate trip’ to Ireland’s Eye for fun and games.

And the fun isn’t confined to on-the-water activities, either, as there will be food and drinks specials and children’s menus available in the bar.

Each event is open one week in advance, and booking is open online until by noon of the day of the event.

Fun Fridays are open to all HYC members (minimum age 6) and also to summer sailing course participants. A full programme is available HERE.

Published in Howth YC
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