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Dublin Bay Sailing Club has published the Notice of Race for its 2022 Spring Chicken series.

Six races will be held on Sunday mornings from 6 February to 13 March (first gun 1010 hrs), using a progressive handicap on a time-to-time basis.

Cruisers, cruising boats, one-designs and boats that do not normally race are “very welcome”, DBSC adds. And after the sailing, prize draws, food and more will be kindly hosted by the National Yacht Club.

The entry fee is €60 which includes temporary membership of DBSC and the NYC. Entries can be made online at

Anyone experiencing issues with their entries is invited to contact Chris Moore, Hon Sec at 087 7626976 or Fintan Cairns at 087 2439208.

Sailing instructions will be available on Sunday 6 February and will be emailed to entrants beforehand.

DBSC advises that the last date for entries is Wednesday 2 February, and warns that handicaps of late entries will be adjusted accordingly.

Published in DBSC

The white-sailed Elan 333 White Lotus was the overall winner of the 21st DBSC Turkey Shoot Series on Dublin Bay on Sunday.

A final light air seventh race for the 75-boat fleet saw a change in the overall results, with third-placed White Lotus skippered by Paul Tully replacing the J109 Dear Prudence at the top of the leaderboard and winning by a margin of seven points under the modified (F)ECHO Handicap.

The 1720 sportsboat Conor K skipped by Kenny Rumball was second on 106 points, with Jay Bourke's Dear Prudence – twice a series leader – dropping to third overall on 107 points after a costly mark rounding incident in the final race.

DBSC Turkey Shoot

In accepting the overall prize, Tully, a Turkey Shoot regular, told Race Organiser Fintan Cairns, "We participate most years and eagerly await results and FECHOs every week. This year we had a few sailors coming back from retirement and hopefully will grow crew participation for next season. We find [The Turkey Shoot] great for just keeping in contact with the crew and keeping the general interest going - I'm sure you know all this, but it's important to acknowledge how important this event is in keeping the whole show on the road".

The 21st edition, sponsored by AIB, was judged a great success with a whole series of seven races sailed and no race cancellations (for only the second time in Turkey Shoot history).

Competitors were largely Bay-based, but some notable exceptions included the Sigma 38 Wardance crew who drove down from Mullaghmore in Sligo and Ballybofey in Donegal on Sunday mornings to race,  a real testament to the success of the event's short and sharp fun formula.

DBSC Turkey Shoot

Published in Turkey Shoot
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The 21st anniversary AIB DBSC Turkey Shoot Series concludes this Sunday with a final race for the 75-boat mixed cruiser-racer fleet on Dublin Bay.

Race organisers say there will be no change to the starting order but there are handicap adjustments (below) for what forecasts indicate will be a light air race seven.

As previously reported, the J/109 Dear Prudence holds the lead going into the final race.

Race seven starts next Sunday at 10.10hrs.

The prizegiving will be held at the Royal Irish Yacht Club after racing.

Published in Turkey Shoot
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The overall leader J/109 Dear Prudence retains the overall lead of the AIB DBSC Turkey Shoot Series going into the final race to be sailed on Dublin Bay this Sunday.

Six races have been sailed so far, and one discard applies in the 75-boat fleet. Download the result below as a PDF file.

J/109s occupy two of the top three places overall, with the National Yacht Club's Ruth now in third after the Elan 333 White Lotus moved up into second.

In an action-packed tace six, race organiser Fintan Cairns has congratulated the crew of the J122 Windjammer for responding to the call to bring the RIYC 3 entry home.

Cairns also reminded competitors of the non-contact sport element for sailing and how this must be kept in mind at all times. "There was contact and some damage to a 1720 sportsboat by a boat from the First Start and this was not acknowledged by the offender. As per the Turkey Shoot, the 1720 is not protesting but definitely deserved an acknowledgement and apology at the time. It is not too late!"

Cairns added, "It is so important for our very varied fleet to give room at all times, particularly at mark roundings". 

Race seven starts next Sunday at 10.10hrs.

Published in Turkey Shoot
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DBSC Commodore Ann Kirwan addressed members of the country's biggest sailing club at its 2021 online AGM last Friday. It was an opportunity to review the many champagne sailing days of the summer and some great turnouts for the 698 club races held on Dublin Bay

2021 started with great news in early January when it was announced via Afloat that DBSC had been named as the Mitsubishi Sailing Club of the Year. Jonathan Nicholson, Commodore in 2020, and I were presented with the coveted ship’s wheel in August. We are very proud of this achievement and we now include the ‘Sailing Club of the Year’ logo on all our email communications.

Jonathan Nicholson, Commodore in 2020, and Ann Kirwan with the Mitsubishi Motors Club of the Year Ship's Wheel trophyIn January, Jonathan Nicholson (DBSC Commodore in 2020) and Commodore Ann Kirwan were presented with the Mitsubishi Motors Club of the Year Ship's Wheel trophy

I want to pay tribute to two of our long-standing volunteers who sadly passed away in 2021. Our dear friend Carmel Winkelmann, who gave generously, tirelessly and enthusiastically of her time to her beloved sport of sailing for well over 50 years, sadly passed away on June 12th. Carmel was a DBSC volunteer for much of that time, well known for being a regular in the hut, and was still keeping us on the straight and narrow right up until May this year with her wisdom, experience and incredibly sharp mind.

We also lost another valued volunteer, Larry Martin, who sadly passed away on March 22nd this year. Larry was a regular volunteer in the hut over the years, and more recently was a ‘Flagger’ on the Green Fleet team right up until the summer of 2020.

Highlights of the AIB DBSC 2021 Summer Sailing Season

The season started with a 3-week race training series from mid-May and our full racing programme commenced on June 8th some 6 weeks earlier than last season. We enjoyed many champagne sailing days with moderate winds and lots of warm sunshine. We lost just 1 Saturday due to heavy winds, and 2 Thursdays and 1 Wednesday due to light winds. We held 698 races over the season - 483 keelboat races on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, 198 dinghy races on Tuesdays and Saturdays, and 17 Water Wag races on Wednesdays.

The DBSC Race Hut was back on station on the West Pier in 2021After being stored on the Coal Quay (above) in 2020, the DBSC Race Hut was back on station on the West Pier in July (below)

The Royal St. George Georgette sportsboat team

The iconic DBSC hut returned to its rightful position on the west pier on July 10th and we ran the last 8 Tuesday keelboat races from it. Pier walkers and DBSC members were delighted to see its return after a year’s absence.

It was a great pleasure to welcome 3 of the magnificently restored Dublin Bay 21 Footers, Naneen, Estelle, and Garavogue back to Dun Laoghaire in July. The 21s raced on Tuesdays towards the end of the season, and we expect to see more of them joining the fleet for a full 2022 season.

Dublin Bay 21 Footer Naneen at Dun Laoghaire's East PierDublin Bay 21 Footer Naneen at Dun Laoghaire's East Pier in July

Entries were roughly the same as 2020 but were still well down on 2019. However, turnout was strong with many of you commenting on how great it was to be back on the water after a long and difficult winter. On average 120 boats raced on Thursdays and Saturdays and we had 31 Wags competing for the Captain’s prize on September 1st.

A team of 50 volunteers are required to run DBSC racing each seasonAIB Private Banking are on board as DBSC title sponsors

The summer sailing season came to a close on Saturday, September 25th. The Turkey Shoot commenced its 7-race series on November 7th and all competing have enjoyed great racing so far. A reminder that the Spring Chicken series starts on Sunday, February 5th.

DBSC Volunteers

We are extremely fortunate to have such experienced and skilled personnel running DBSC racing. A team of 50+ volunteers including race officers, committee boat drivers and race management teams, as well a further 50 patrol crews, all worked together to ensure you received the great standard of racing that you expect. Our extensive racing programme would not have been possible without their efforts, and many of them turned out multiple times each week.

This AIB DBSC summer sailing season was run with 18 race officers, eight committee boat drivers, 30 race management personnel (timers, sounds signallers, flaggers, and recorders), as well as rib drivers and mark layers, and many others who worked behind the scenes to deliver our racing programme. Our committee boats MacLir and Freebird were very well looked after by Ian Meldon, Brendan Dalton and Chris Moore.

It was an easy decision to honour our esteemed volunteers with the DBSC Premier award, the Viking Trophy for a notable contribution to sailing, for a second successive season. Well done and thank you to the DBSC volunteers.

Annual Prize-Giving

We presented our AIB DBSC 2020 Summer Sailing Season prizes to the winners in the waterfront clubs in June/July, as we had been unable to hold our prize giving in November 2020.

The 2020 DBSC Summer Sailing Season prizes were presented to winners in the waterfront clubs outdoorsThe 2020 DBSC Summer Sailing Season prizes were presented to winners  outdoors (including Ken Dumpleton of the Flying Fifteen class above)  in the waterfront clubs 

We held 2021 prize giving in the wonderful setting of the National Maritime Museum on Friday, November 12th.

The array of DBSC silverware at prizegiving 2021 Photo: Michael ChesterThe array of DBSC silverware at prizegiving 2021 Photo: Michael Chester

It was great to see so many of you there and we got some really positive feedback on the location. Photos of the prize-winners can be found on our website.

With Gratitude

We are extremely fortunate to have AIB Private Banking on board as our title sponsors. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to AIB, and to our supporters Gunpowder Gin, Killen Marine, Viking Marine, MGM Boats and Facet Jewellers.

Thanks also to the Commodores and the management and staff of the Dun Laoghaire waterfront clubs, to Irish Sailing, to the Harbour Masters of Dun Laoghaire Harbour Captains Simon Coate and Tim Ryan, and to Dublin Port Harbour Master Captain Michael McKenna for their support throughout the season.

Thanks also to Afloat for great coverage of DBSC racing and events throughout the season.

Thanks to my fellow committee members:

Ed Totterdell – Vice Commodore & PRO, Jacqueline McStay – Rear Commodore, Chris Moore - Hon. Secretary, Peter Fleming – Hon. Treasurer, Philip Ferguson - Marks, Gerry Jones & Suzi Roy - Sponsorship, Louise McKenna - Dinghies, Ian Bowring - Results, Declan Traynor - Bosun & Covid Officer, Sabrina Mahony – Children’s Officer, Debbie Horan – Admin, Brian Matthews - Technical Director

A special thanks to three of our committee members who are stepping down tonight having served DBSC so well for a number of years: Peter Fleming, Debbie Horan, and Brian Mathews. And to Colin McMullan who is retiring from his role as Results Secretary after a number of years making sure our results were available promptly after each race.

Welcome aboard to our new committee members - incoming Treasurer Jonathan Skerritt, and Kevin Byrne who will serve on our sailing sub-committee.

And finally, a very special and heartfelt thanks to my fellow Flag Officers Ed (Vice Commodore) and Jacqueline (Rear Commodore). Ed as PRO has done a huge amount of work on the racing front both throughout last winter and during the summer racing season, as well as being a rock of sense and great support to me. And to Jacqueline who upgraded our website - I hope you will agree that Jacqueline’s efforts have brought big improvements which have enabled us to communicate with you our members more effectively.

DBSC Commodore Ann Kirwan addresses the annual prizegiving at the National Maritime MuseumDBSC Commodore Ann Kirwan addresses the annual prizegiving at the National Maritime Museum

Final Comments

Finally, I wish you and your families a very healthy and happy Christmas and the very best for 2022. We look forward to seeing you on the water for the AIB DBSC 2022 Summer Sailing Season.

Thank you,
Ann Kirwan, Commodore

Published in DBSC

As the J109 Dear Prudence leads the AIB DBSC Turkey Shoot into the final two races, handicaps and starts sequences for Sunday's penultimate race are downloadable below.

The Dublin Bay J/109 regained the lead after an epic race five saw the 75-boat fleet round the Muglins Rock at the southern tip of the Bay. 

DBSC Turkey Shoot organiser Fintan Cairns reminds competitors that the prizegiving on 19th December will be held in the Wet Bar of the Royal Irish Yacht Club.

Published in Turkey Shoot
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The J/109 Dear Prudence has regained the overall lead of the AIB DBSC Turkey Shoot Series with two races left to sail on Dublin Bay.

Results for last Sunday's handicap 75-boat cruiser-racing league, the fifth of seven, have been published (downloadable below) and J/109s occupy the two places overall with the National Yacht Club's Ruth now in second overall.

The Elan 333 White Lotus holds third place overall in the Royal Irish Yacht Club hosted series.

As regular Afloat readers will recall, Dear Prudence held the lead after three races sailed but then lost out to John O'Gorman's Hot Cookie in the fourth race.

Race four starts next Sunday at 10.10hrs.

Racing downwind to the Muglins in race five Photo: Charlotte O'KellyRacing downwind to the Muglins in race five Photo: Charlotte O'Kelly

Published in Turkey Shoot
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With just three races left to the Royal Irish Yacht Club hosted prizegiving at the AIB DBSC Turkey Shoot Series on Sunday, December 19th, the starts and handicaps for race five this Sunday morning have been published.

With four races sailed on Dublin Bay, the 75-boat fleet is led by John O'Gorman's Sunfast 3600, Hot Cookie.

The consistent National Yacht Club entry is one of ten boats in the fourth of five starts for the bumper Christmas fleet.

The no race cancellations trend in 2021 looks set to continue with ideal 15 to 20-knot west north winds forecast this Sunday.

A full breakdown of starts is downloadable below. Revised handicaps are calculated and also available to download below.

Race Organiser Fintan Cairns reports a great atmosphere in the Royal Irish Yacht Club Wet Bar and the Terrace after racing, subject to COVID guidelines.

Published in Turkey Shoot
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John O'Gorman's Sunfast 3600 Hot Cookie from the National Yacht Club (on board footage from Prof O'Connell of North Sails below) is the overall leader of the mixed cruiser DBSC Turkey Shoot Series on Dublin Bay after four of seven races sailed. 

Another top DBSC campaigner, the Lindsay Casey skippered J/97 Windjammer, from the Royal St. George Yacht Club, is lying second in the 75 boat fleet on 87 points, 11 points behind the leader. 

Early series leader Joker II (John Maybury's J/109 of the Royal Irish Yacht Club) is lying third on 94 points.

Download results below as a pdf file.

Race five starts next Sunday at 10.10hrs.

Race Organiser Fintan Cairns reports a great atmosphere in the Royal Irish Yacht Club Wet Bar and the Terrace after racing, subject to COVID guidelines.

Published in Turkey Shoot

Storm Arwen's strong north westerlies are due to abate in time for Sunday's fourth race of the AIB DBSC Turkey Shoot Series on Dublin Bay.

As the winter yacht racing series passes its halfway stage, the J109 Dear Prudence leads the 75-boat fleet after last week's epic round Dalkey Island course.

The combined Dun Laoghaire Harbour fleet of 75 will have some adjustments to its five start lineup this weekend.

The J/109 leader is being chased by former series double winner Mermaid V, a First 50, from the Royal Irish Yacht Club.

A full breakdown of starts for race four is downloadable below. Revised Handicaps are calculated and also available to download below.

Race Organiser Fintan Cairns reports a great atmosphere in the Royal Irish Yacht Club Wet Bar and the Terrace after racing, subject to COVID guidelines.

Published in Turkey Shoot
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Ireland's Offshore Renewable Energy

Because of Ireland's location at the Atlantic edge of the EU, it has more offshore energy potential than most other countries in Europe. The conditions are suitable for the development of the full range of current offshore renewable energy technologies.

Offshore Renewable Energy FAQs

Offshore renewable energy draws on the natural energy provided by wind, wave and tide to convert it into electricity for industry and domestic consumption.

Offshore wind is the most advanced technology, using fixed wind turbines in coastal areas, while floating wind is a developing technology more suited to deeper water. In 2018, offshore wind provided a tiny fraction of global electricity supply, but it is set to expand strongly in the coming decades into a USD 1 trillion business, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). It says that turbines are growing in size and in power capacity, which in turn is "delivering major performance and cost improvements for offshore wind farms".

The global offshore wind market grew nearly 30% per year between 2010 and 2018, according to the IEA, due to rapid technology improvements, It calculated that about 150 new offshore wind projects are in active development around the world. Europe in particular has fostered the technology's development, led by Britain, Germany and Denmark, but China added more capacity than any other country in 2018.

A report for the Irish Wind Energy Assocation (IWEA) by the Carbon Trust – a British government-backed limited company established to accelerate Britain's move to a low carbon economy - says there are currently 14 fixed-bottom wind energy projects, four floating wind projects and one project that has yet to choose a technology at some stage of development in Irish waters. Some of these projects are aiming to build before 2030 to contribute to the 5GW target set by the Irish government, and others are expected to build after 2030. These projects have to secure planning permission, obtain a grid connection and also be successful in a competitive auction in the Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS).

The electricity generated by each turbine is collected by an offshore electricity substation located within the wind farm. Seabed cables connect the offshore substation to an onshore substation on the coast. These cables transport the electricity to land from where it will be used to power homes, farms and businesses around Ireland. The offshore developer works with EirGrid, which operates the national grid, to identify how best to do this and where exactly on the grid the project should connect.

The new Marine Planning and Development Management Bill will create a new streamlined system for planning permission for activity or infrastructure in Irish waters or on the seabed, including offshore wind farms. It is due to be published before the end of 2020 and enacted in 2021.

There are a number of companies aiming to develop offshore wind energy off the Irish coast and some of the larger ones would be ESB, SSE Renewables, Energia, Statkraft and RWE.

There are a number of companies aiming to develop offshore wind energy off the Irish coast and some of the larger ones would be ESB, SSE Renewables, Energia, Statkraft and RWE. Is there scope for community involvement in offshore wind? The IWEA says that from the early stages of a project, the wind farm developer "should be engaging with the local community to inform them about the project, answer their questions and listen to their concerns". It says this provides the community with "the opportunity to work with the developer to help shape the final layout and design of the project". Listening to fishing industry concerns, and how fishermen may be affected by survey works, construction and eventual operation of a project is "of particular concern to developers", the IWEA says. It says there will also be a community benefit fund put in place for each project. It says the final details of this will be addressed in the design of the RESS (see below) for offshore wind but it has the potential to be "tens of millions of euro over the 15 years of the RESS contract". The Government is also considering the possibility that communities will be enabled to invest in offshore wind farms though there is "no clarity yet on how this would work", the IWEA says.

Based on current plans, it would amount to around 12 GW of offshore wind energy. However, the IWEA points out that is unlikely that all of the projects planned will be completed. The industry says there is even more significant potential for floating offshore wind off Ireland's west coast and the Programme for Government contains a commitment to develop a long-term plan for at least 30 GW of floating offshore wind in our deeper waters.

There are many different models of turbines. The larger a turbine, the more efficient it is in producing electricity at a good price. In choosing a turbine model the developer will be conscious of this ,but also has to be aware the impact of the turbine on the environment, marine life, biodiversity and visual impact. As a broad rule an offshore wind turbine will have a tip-height of between 165m and 215m tall. However, turbine technology is evolving at a rapid rate with larger more efficient turbines anticipated on the market in the coming years.


The Renewable Electricity Support Scheme is designed to support the development of renewable energy projects in Ireland. Under the scheme wind farms and solar farms compete against each other in an auction with the projects which offer power at the lowest price awarded contracts. These contracts provide them with a guaranteed price for their power for 15 years. If they obtain a better price for their electricity on the wholesale market they must return the difference to the consumer.

Yes. The first auction for offshore renewable energy projects is expected to take place in late 2021.

Cost is one difference, and technology is another. Floating wind farm technology is relatively new, but allows use of deeper water. Ireland's 50-metre contour line is the limit for traditional bottom-fixed wind farms, and it is also very close to population centres, which makes visibility of large turbines an issue - hence the attraction of floating structures Do offshore wind farms pose a navigational hazard to shipping? Inshore fishermen do have valid concerns. One of the first steps in identifying a site as a potential location for an offshore wind farm is to identify and assess the level of existing marine activity in the area and this particularly includes shipping. The National Marine Planning Framework aims to create, for the first time, a plan to balance the various kinds of offshore activity with the protection of the Irish marine environment. This is expected to be published before the end of 2020, and will set out clearly where is suitable for offshore renewable energy development and where it is not - due, for example, to shipping movements and safe navigation.

YEnvironmental organisations are concerned about the impact of turbines on bird populations, particularly migrating birds. A Danish scientific study published in 2019 found evidence that larger birds were tending to avoid turbine blades, but said it didn't have sufficient evidence for smaller birds – and cautioned that the cumulative effect of farms could still have an impact on bird movements. A full environmental impact assessment has to be carried out before a developer can apply for planning permission to develop an offshore wind farm. This would include desk-based studies as well as extensive surveys of the population and movements of birds and marine mammals, as well as fish and seabed habitats. If a potential environmental impact is identified the developer must, as part of the planning application, show how the project will be designed in such a way as to avoid the impact or to mitigate against it.

A typical 500 MW offshore wind farm would require an operations and maintenance base which would be on the nearby coast. Such a project would generally create between 80-100 fulltime jobs, according to the IWEA. There would also be a substantial increase to in-direct employment and associated socio-economic benefit to the surrounding area where the operation and maintenance hub is located.

The recent Carbon Trust report for the IWEA, entitled Harnessing our potential, identified significant skills shortages for offshore wind in Ireland across the areas of engineering financial services and logistics. The IWEA says that as Ireland is a relatively new entrant to the offshore wind market, there are "opportunities to develop and implement strategies to address the skills shortages for delivering offshore wind and for Ireland to be a net exporter of human capital and skills to the highly competitive global offshore wind supply chain". Offshore wind requires a diverse workforce with jobs in both transferable (for example from the oil and gas sector) and specialist disciplines across apprenticeships and higher education. IWEA have a training network called the Green Tech Skillnet that facilitates training and networking opportunities in the renewable energy sector.

It is expected that developing the 3.5 GW of offshore wind energy identified in the Government's Climate Action Plan would create around 2,500 jobs in construction and development and around 700 permanent operations and maintenance jobs. The Programme for Government published in 2020 has an enhanced target of 5 GW of offshore wind which would create even more employment. The industry says that in the initial stages, the development of offshore wind energy would create employment in conducting environmental surveys, community engagement and development applications for planning. As a site moves to construction, people with backgrounds in various types of engineering, marine construction and marine transport would be recruited. Once the site is up and running , a project requires a team of turbine technicians, engineers and administrators to ensure the wind farm is fully and properly maintained, as well as crew for the crew transfer vessels transporting workers from shore to the turbines.

The IEA says that today's offshore wind market "doesn't even come close to tapping the full potential – with high-quality resources available in most major markets". It estimates that offshore wind has the potential to generate more than 420 000 Terawatt hours per year (TWh/yr) worldwide – as in more than 18 times the current global electricity demand. One Terawatt is 114 megawatts, and to put it in context, Scotland it has a population a little over 5 million and requires 25 TWh/yr of electrical energy.

Not as advanced as wind, with anchoring a big challenge – given that the most effective wave energy has to be in the most energetic locations, such as the Irish west coast. Britain, Ireland and Portugal are regarded as most advanced in developing wave energy technology. The prize is significant, the industry says, as there are forecasts that varying between 4000TWh/yr to 29500TWh/yr. Europe consumes around 3000TWh/year.

The industry has two main umbrella organisations – the Irish Wind Energy Association, which represents both onshore and offshore wind, and the Marine Renewables Industry Association, which focuses on all types of renewable in the marine environment.

©Afloat 2020

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