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Clipper Sailors Fly Cork Flag

9th August 2009
Clipper Sailors Fly Cork Flag

25 people from Ireland, UK, and Germany arrived in Cork in advance of the biggest challenge of their lives. They will sail onboard the Cork Clipper boat in the Clipper 09-10 Round the World Yacht Race which starts in Hull in the UK on 13 September.

Seán Óg hAilpín met with the crew to wish them a safe and successful race and to unveil the coek colours that will fly from the boat around the world.

Around half of the crew have no previous sailing experience – but what all of them have in common is that they have put their everyday lives as air traffic controllers, interior designers, taxi drivers, lawyers, and students on hold to take on this incredible challenge.

The Cork Clipper project is funded by Fáilte Ireland, Cork City Council and Cork County Council with the main objective of promoting Cork as a tourism and business destination around the world. Working alongside Tourism Ireland, Cork will be promoted to consumers, trade and the media in key markets that the race visits. The culmination of the project will be the arrival of the 10 yachts in the Clipper race to Kinsale in July 2010 for 8 days of festivities which will showcase Ireland to a global market.

Over the weekend the crew had the opportunity to experience Ireland with a walking tour of Cork City, kissing the Blarney stone, sampling Irish cuisine in Kinsale the gourmet capital of Ireland and a visit to the Queenstown story in Cobh.

‘It is essential that the crew onboard the Cork Clipper know Cork and understand what is unique about Ireland as a tourism destination so they can be ambassadors  in their journey around the world’. Stated Fáilte Ireland General Manager, Fiona Buckley. ‘We also wanted them to experience a true ‘cead mile fáilte’ so they know what will be waiting for them when they sail into Cork next July’. continued Buckley.

For the crew this will be no walk in the park as they sail 37,000nm around the world pitting themselves against all the elements. The race will be a mixture of long, tactical ocean races where endurance is tested to the limit and short, technical sprints. Weather will range from virtually flat calm to raging seas and storm force winds, enough to test the mettle of even the bravest.

At a farewell event on Saturday the Deputy Mayor of Cork, Cllr Laura McGonigle and the Mayor of County Cork Cllr Derry Canty wished the crew a safe and successful race around the world on board the Cork Clipper.

‘We want to assure you that the people of Cork are proud of you taking on this challenge and we will be supporting you and following your progress around the world.’ stated Cllr Laura McGonigle.

Planning has commenced for the visit to Cork of the Clipper Race in 2010 and the boats will visit Kinsale and Cork harbour over the 8 days with events for everyone to enjoy.

‘We will be waiting on the dock when the boats sail into Kinsale next July and we promise that Cork will host an event that will make you proud to be part of our team’ said Cllr Derry Canty

The crew have undertaken the Clipper training programme in preparation for the race and will sail onboard a 68 foot (20.8 metres) boat with an 89-foot mast (27.3 metres). All 10 teams will sail on the same type of boat which have been designed and built the same. The boats are created for speed and safety, giving the non-professional sailors onboard an unprecedented racing challenge. With up-to-the-minute navigation centres, the latest sailing equipment and basic, racefriendly accommodation, the identical yachts put winning and losing firmly in the hands of the crew onboard.

The Cork Clipper crew age from 25 to 61 year of age and 40% of the sailors are female. 11 of the crew will sail all legs of the race and the remainder of the crew will change on each leg. The Cork Clipper will carry 17 crew and with a watch system in operation onboard, crew will on average sleep for only 2 and a half hours at a time. The skipper of Cork Clipper is Richie Fearon from Derry who is a member of Lough Swilly Yacht Club in Donegal. Richie experienced his first success on board the Cork Clipper when he won the Clipper class in the 2009 Round the Island Race in the Isle of Wight earlier this summer with a BBC TV crew onboard from the Blue Peter programme.

Published in Cork Harbour Team

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Cork Harbour Information

It’s one of the largest natural harbours in the world – and those living near Cork Harbour insist that it’s also one of the most interesting.

This was the last port of call for the most famous liner in history, the Titanic, but it has been transformed into a centre for the chemical and pharmaceutical industry.

The harbour has been a working port and a strategic defensive hub for centuries, and it has been one of Ireland's major employment hubs since the early 1900s. Traditional heavy industries have waned since the late 20th century, with the likes of the closure of Irish Steel in Haulbowline and shipbuilding at Verolme. It still has major and strategic significance in energy generation, shipping and refining.

Giraffe wander along its shores, from which tens of thousands of men and women left Ireland, most of them never to return. The harbour is home to the oldest yacht club in the world, and to the Irish Navy. 

This deep waterway has also become a vital cog in the Irish economy.

‘'s Cork Harbour page’ is not a history page, nor is it a news focus. It’s simply an exploration of this famous waterway, its colour and its characters.

Cork Harbour Festival

Ocean to City – An Rás Mór and Cork Harbour Open Day formerly existed as two popular one-day events located at different points on Cork’s annual maritime calendar. Both event committees recognised the synergy between the two events and began to work together and share resources. In 2015, Cork Harbour Festival was launched. The festival was shaped on the open day principle, with Ocean to City – An Ras Mór as the flagship event.

Now in its sixth year, the festival has grown from strength to strength. Although the physical 2020 festival was cancelled due to Covid-19, the event normally features nine festival days starting on the first week of June. It is packed full of events; all made possible through collaboration with over 50 different event partners in Cork City, as well as 15 towns and villages along Cork Harbour. The programme grows year by year and highlights Ireland’s rich maritime heritage and culture as well as water and shore-based activities, with Ocean to City – An Rás Mór at the heart of the festival.

Taking place at the centre of Ireland’s maritime paradise, and at the gateway to Ireland’s Ancient East and the Wild Atlantic Way, Cork is perfectly positioned to deliver the largest and most engaging harbour festival in Ireland.

The Cork Harbour Festival Committee includes representatives from Cork City Council, Cork County Council, Port of Cork, UCC MaREI, RCYC, Cobh & Harbour Chamber and Meitheal Mara.

Marinas in Cork Harbour

There are six marinas in Cork Harbour. Three in Crosshaven, one in East Ferry, one in Monkstown Bay and a new facility is opening in 2020 at Cobh. Details below

Port of Cork City Marina

Location – Cork City
Contact – Harbour Masters Dept., Port of Cork Tel: +353 (0)21 4273125 or +353 (0)21 4530466 (out of office hours)

Royal Cork Yacht Club Marina

Location: Crosshaven, Co. Cork
Contact: +353 (0) 21 4831023

Crosshaven Boatyard Marina

Location: Crosshaven, Co. Cork
Contact: +353 (0)21 4831161

Salve Marina Ltd

Location: Crosshaven, Co. Cork
Contact: +353 (0) 21 4831145

Cork Harbour Marina

Location: Monkstown, Co. Cork
Contact: +353 (0)87 3669009

East Ferry Marina

Location: East Ferry, Co. Cork
Contact: +353 (0)21 4813390

New Cove Sailing Club Marina

(to be opened in 2020)

Location: Cobh, Co. Cork
Contact: 087 1178363

Cork Harbour pontoons, slipways and ramps

Cork City Boardwalk Existing pontoon

Port of Cork 100m. pontoon

Cork city – End of Cornmarket St. steps and slip;

Cork city - Proby’s Qy. Existing limited access slip

Quays Bar & Restaurant, Private pontoon and ramp for patrons, suitable for yachts, small craft town and amenities

Cobh harbour [camber] Slip and steps inside quay wall pontoon

Fota (zoo, house, gardens) Derelict pontoon and steps

Haulbowline naval basin; restricted space Naval base; restricted access;

Spike Island pier, steps; slip, pontoon and ramp

Monkstown wooden pier and steps;

Crosshaven town pier, with pontoon & steps

East Ferry Marlogue marina, Slip (Great Island side) visitors’ berths

East Ferry Existing pier and slip; restricted space East Ferry Inn (pub)
(Mainland side)

Blackrock pier and slips

Ballinacurra Quay walls (private)

Aghada pier and slip, pontoon & steps public transport links

Whitegate Slip

Passage West Pontoon

Glenbrook Cross-river ferry

Ringaskiddy Parking with slip and pontoon Ferry terminal; village 1km.

Carrigaloe pier and slip; restricted space; Cross-river ferry;

Fountainstown Slip

White’s Bay beach

Ringabella beach

Glanmire Bridge and tide restrictions

Old Glanmire - Quay