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Displaying items by tag: Cork Harbour

You thought 2019 was quite the busy sailing year in Ireland? Believe me folks, after writing last Saturday’s marathon review of one very special season, we went through the weekend in a state of mental meltdown which wasn’t helped by knowing that this weekend would naturally require an anticipation of what’s coming down the line in 2020.

But the fates are kind. So much is going to be happening afloat and ashore in the sailing and boating context in 2020 that reinforcements will be available at every juncture to look after details. So today’s piece is in the very broad strokes category rather than delving into the minutiae, giving some sense of what it will be like to live through the various special occasions and events which are going to be fired at us from nearly every Irish sailing centre.

Yet no matter which way you look at it, the Tricentenary of the Royal Cork Yacht Club is the beginning, the middle and the end of everything that will be happening in Irish sailing in 2020. Three hundred years. Three hundred? Is it something that we really grasp in any meaningful way?

Oh for sure, the latest global genetic research suggests that the first true ancestors of Homo Sapiens first appeared 200,000 years ago, living blissfully beside a large and verdant lake in the midst of what is now the Kalahari Desert in southern Africa. Evidently, in those days climate change was already past its infancy, but it’s the certainty of those 200,000 years which give pause for thought. Set against that, and the age of Newgrange or the Pyramids or other inert ancient monuments, and the 300 years of Cork sailing isn’t even the blink of an eye.

royal cork aerial3 Recreational sailing from Cork Harbour may have had several different locations for its main focal point over the centuries. But the one true flame of the spirit of sailing has burned throughout, and is very much alive and well at today’s Royal Cork YC headquarters at Crosshaven. Photo: Robert Bateman

But the Royal Cork Yacht Club is still very much alive and relevant to life in 2020. It may have moved its location from time to time in Cork Harbour, and it may have started life as the Water Club of the Harbour of Cork in 1720. But through these mutations, and through times of widely varying prosperity, the spirit - the vital spark of the club - has never been extinguished. In 2020, we’re going to have to grasp just what 300 years really mean in truly human everyday terms, because it’s likely that most of us – other than historians, archaeologists or whatever – think that the average human lifespan is probably the most comprehensible unit of historic time measurement, and anything beyond that is just so ancient as not to be thought about at all.

Fortunately, we have a very solid foundation on which to assess the story of Cork and world sailing. In 2005, the Royal Cork Yacht Club published its full history, based on its extensive and ancient archives which had been in the dedicated voluntary care of Dermot Burns for some time, and they got professional historian Alicia St Leger to make sense of it. The result of it all – so beautifully designed and produced by Tony O’Hanlon that it won national book and printing awards - was one massive and weighty tome.

We’re talking of a mighty volume 33cm (1ft 1in) x 24cm (9.5ins) and 5 cm (2ins) deep, weighing 6.75 lbs (3.1kg), with 480 pages and more images, illustrations and photos than you could count, every one of them an historic gem set in a book of breath-taking beauty For some readers, its sheer size is daunting. It’s definitely serious desk reading. But every page provides something of pure gold, and if you want a genuine sense of what 300 years is really like in a way to which sailing folk can relate, it is required reading, while also being a treasure trove of information which, in 2020 with its special celebrations, is more important than ever.

book 1829 cup4This typical page from the Royal Cork Yacht Club History - published 2005 - gives the detailed story of the 1829 Cork Harbour Regatta Cup (now in the club’s collection), which was won by Caulfield Beamish’s 42-ton cutter Young Paddy by a boat’s length. It was a very popular victory, as the boat – which achieved additional success elsewhere - was owner-designed and built locally on the shores of Cork Harbour. Reproduced by courtesy RCYC

Thus the book, nearly 15 years after its publication, continues to be an enormous credit to the Flag Officers, Committee, support volunteers and production team who created this priceless record with the full support of the membership of a club which is - in numerical terms of those living within everyday reach and actively involved – really quite a modest outfit, even if its very distinguished overseas membership significantly boosts the numbers.

So we’ll return to the History of the Royal Cork YC in due course today as we close in on July 2020, when global sailing and international powerboating fixes its focus firmly on Cork Harbour. That said, anyone coming to Ireland simply for the Cork festivities has it easy from the logistic points of view, as they’re thinking of just one thing in one month in the one place. Yet those of who actually live in Ireland in what we hope will be a summery place for the season that’s in it will have to work our way through a programme which would be quite busy even if the Royal Cork’s Megafest weren’t taking place.

These are some of the building blocks of the year in which this Tricentenary is taking place. In 2020:

  • Lough Ree Yacht Club is 250 years old.
  • Lough Erne YC is 200.
  • Howth Yacht Club is 125.
  • The Round Ireland Race from Wicklow on June 20th (now sponsored by SSE Renewables) celebrates its 40th Anniversary.
  • The GP14 Worlds are in Skerries from 25th to 31st July
  • The International Fireball Worlds take place at Howth from 5th to 14th August
  • The International Dragon Gold Cup is at Kinsale from 5th to 11th September

All the clubs with special celebrations will be looking for their place in the sun during 2020 while deferring to the Royal Cork’s unique and deservedly exalted status. And those clubs are also going to have to build any special happenings around the established pillar events which structure the season for cruiser-racers and occasionally One Design classes.

These include the Scottish Series from May 21st to 25th, the biennial Wave Regatta at Howth from Friday May 29th to Sunday May 31st, the developing season-long 2020 ISORA programme as the summer (we hope) takes hold, the SSE Renewables Round Ireland Race from Wicklow on June 20th, and the Bangor Town Regatta on Belfast Lough from 25th to 28th June, which will include the Sigma 33 Championship.

On top of that, 2020 is an Olympic Year, and with some good fortune Ireland will have a national place in the 49er class to add to the Laser Radial placed already secured in Tokyo by the time the Sailing Olympiad gets going at Enoshima in Japan from 27th July to the 6th August. That said, if we don’t get a direct skiff place, there’s a better-than-vicarious participation through Saskia Tidey of the Royal Irish YC, who has teamed up to secure a place in the 49er FX on the British squad with Charlotte Dobson of Scotland.

Meanwhile, back home the much-enjoyed Calves Week in West Cork swings into action with its proven success of a four day format starting at Schull on Tuesday August 4th. And though Cork Harbour in August will not be at quite the same white heart of energy it expended during July, RCYC will be staging at least three more national events in August with an emphasis on smaller boats, with the Open Championships for the National 18s, the Lasers and the Optimists.

national 18s cork5The latest version of the National 18s undergoing evaluation in Cork Harbour, which played a leading role in their introduction. The class will be holding their Annual Championship in August at Crosshaven as part of the RCYC Tricentennial celebrations. Photo: Robert Bateman

All three have special associations with RCYC, with the latest version of the National 18s, in particular, being more or less a home-grown (and club-financed) RCYC project, while the Optimist Opens in 2019 saw a Crosshaven/Kinsale winner in James Dwyer Matthews, though the class’s upper age limits will mean a new name on the title in 2020.

Yet as Dwyer Matthews won the 2019 series at Howth in the final race in a total fleet of 185 boats which included participants from 11 nations, the remarkable International Optimist Dinghy Association of Ireland is likely to be looking to honour the Royal Cork YC’s Tricentenary in its own way with a total fleet of more than 200 and even more international participation, for all that it’s a national open championship.

By the time those stratospheric numbers have been achieved, the frenetic pace of July 2020 in Crosshaven, as steadily brought together by Colin Morehead and his Cork300 Committee, will have become the latest chapter in the RCYC’s colourful history, and the basis of it is provided in the incomparable book of the club history.

A new chapter has already been added with the unique twinning of the Royal Cork YC with the Yacht Club de Monaco, and the recent international launching of the Tricentenary by Prince Albert II of Monaco in the YCM clubhouse. In sailing terms, the 300 years of the Royal Cork is quite something, but in absolute terms it pales somewhat when set against the 624 years that have seen he Grimaldi family holding sway as the Princes of Monaco, where they have been the ultimate stakeholders since 1395. There probably wasn’t a lot of recreational sailing going on in Ireland at that time…….

morehead monaco farnon6Colin Morehead, Chairman of Cork300, Prince Albert II of Monaco, and RCYC Admiral Pat Farnan at the recent launching of Cork300 in the Yacht Club de Monaco, which has a unique twinning arrangement with the RCYC, and will be giving its full support to the Tricentenary Celebrations.

Much is being made of the fact that the Royal Ocean Racing Club’s annual Morgan Cup Race is going to be from Cowes to Cork on July 8th, with a major trophy being presented by the Prince of Wales. For although Cork’s own Harry Donegan with his famous Gull was one of the participant-founders of the RORC after the first 1925 Fastnet Race with Gull third overall, while the new club continued to use the Fastnet Rock as a mark of that course, the first RORC Cowes to Cork race didn’t occur until 1954, when the winner in some decidedly heavy weather was Adlard Coles’ Nicholson yawl Cohoe II, while second overall was Geoffrey Pattinson’s big Robert Clark sloop Jocasta.

gull sailing7 Harry Donegan’s 17-ton cutter Gull of 1898 vintage is one of the most important boats in Cork sailing history. He owned her from 1921 until his death in 1940, and was a founder member of the RORC with participation in the first Fastnet Race of 1925, in which Gull placed third. Gull was also at Glengarriff for the foundation of the Irish Cruising Club in 1929, an event in which Harry Donegan played a central role. As keen for racing as he was for cruising, he was founding Honorary Secretary of the Cork Harbour One Designs from 1895. Photo RCYC

Adlard Coles – best-remembered these days for his book Heavy Weather Sailing - then took Cohoe II for a cruise in southwest Ireland, which is more or less what is planned for the cruising-minded visiting fleets after the mighty Tricentenary Fleet Review in Cork Harbour on Sunday July 12th. The skipper of Cohoe II particularly liked Dingle, at a time when that now-legendary port wasn’t on many cruise plans. But the rest of the RORC couldn’t give up racing, and their next venture was the Cork to Belle Ile Race, which was won by Jocasta.

jocasta cork8 Geoffrey Pattinson’s 55ft Robert Clark-designed alloy sloop Jocasta leaving Cork Harbour at the start of the 1954 RORC Cork-Belle Ile Race, which she won. Jocasta had come to Cork in 1954’s first RORC Cowes-Cork Race, which is going to be repeated in the RORC Morgan Cup Race on Wednesday July 8th 2020.

Subsequently, RORC races terminating in Cork Harbour tended to be from an Irish Sea start, but in 1970 for the Quarter Millennium, they’d a Cowes-Cork Races again, and in 1974 they’d another one, with line honours taken by Eric Tabarly with the 70ft Pen Duick. He made a point of visiting Carrigaloe in the upper harbour where his family’s Fife-designed cutter (the first Pen Duick) was built in 1898, as were several of the still-extant Cork Harbour One Designs, another Fife creation.

cork harbour od9The 1896-built Cork Harbour One Design Imp heading seawards at full power. The 1890s were a notable decade for yacht-building around Cork Harbour Photo Tom Barker

The superbly-sheltered character and much-indented shoreline of Cork Harbour means that – unlike Dublin Bay – there are many places where it has been possible to set up boat-building locations, and over the centuries since the time of the Water Club and beyond, new Cork-created yachts have appeared from these different locations to go on to build national and international reputations, vessels such as Caulfield Beamish’s owner-designed Young Paddy from the late 1820s.

The rush of creativity in the 1890s was typified by Pen Duick, while more recently the hotbed of ideas which was the Cork area in the 1970s to 1990s - when designers such as Ron Holland and Tony Castro, highly skilled boatbuilders like Killian Bushe, and Dick Leonard and his team at Crosshaven Boatyard, together with sailmakers like the McWilliam brothers – put Royal Cork racing achievement central stage.

Pen duick10Eric Tabarly’s famous 43ft cutter Pen Duick, another creation of the Cork Harbour energy of the 1890s. She was built to a Fife design in Carrigaloe in 1898.

The emergence of exceptional sailing talents to match these boats - people like Jimmy Payne and his son Somers, Clayton Love Jnr, Ted Crosbie, Harold Cudmore, Denis Doyle, Anthony O’Leary and Mark Mansfield - to name only eight out of a host of greats – is yet another aspect of a story so continuous and complex that its existence is probably the best we can hope to see acknowledged during 2020 when everyone will be busy getting on with celebration afloat and ashore, living in the present while being aware of this remarkable saga of sailing which has made the Royal Cork YC what it is today.

OLeary Antix Modern superstar – Anthony O’Leary’s 39ft Antix, RORC Yacht of the Year in 2014.

You’re never far from sailing history like this in Cork Harbour, and it’s way back beyond 1898 that we go for the origins of the other race which will be bringing fleets to Crosshaven, the pioneering 190-mile Dublin Bay to Cork Harbour Race of 14th July 1860, which was probably one of the first recognisably modern offshore races to be staged anywhere in the world.

The original account was in Hunt’s Yachting Magazine in the summer of 1860, subsequently, it appeared in To Sail the Crested Sea, the history of the first fifty years of the Irish Cruising Club published in 1979, and in the RCYC History of 2005 the story is told again – on page 155.

So although some other versions of the finishing order in the fleet of sixteen yachts seem to be circulating at the moment, the records with the RCYC on what became known as the Kingstown-Queenstown Race have it that the winner – finishing off Cobh in the lightest of airs at 5.20 am on the Monday July 16th – was the 39-ton cutter Sibyl, owned by Sir John Arnott and sailed by the renowned amateur skipper Henry O’Bryen, while second just three minutes later was the 80-ton cutter Peri (J W Cannon), and third only two minutes astern at 5.25 am was the 90-ton schooner Kingfisher (Cooper Penrose).

There were no handicap calculations in those pioneering “ocean match” days, so the Sibyl’s win was doubly sweet, as the entry fees were based on tonnage, and as the fourth smallest boat in the race, Sibyl’s payment was only 19 shillings and six pence, whereas the largest racer – the 167-ton schooner Mirage which was well off the pace – had to shell out four pounds three shillings and six pence for the doubtful pleasure of being beaten boat-for-boat by a vessel a quarter of her size.

kingstown cobh entry list12 The original entry listing for the first 190-mile Kingstown-Queenstown Race of 14th July 1860, including the varied entry fees. The winner – by just three minutes – was the 39-ton Sybil, listed No 6, owned by Sir John Arnott and sailed by renowned amateur skipper Henry O’Bryen. Courtesy RCYC

That Henry O’Bryen was able to find the last few minutes of concentration to take a win was quite something when – as the Hunt’s Magazine report put it – “the excitement was painfully intense”, for the ace amateur had spent the entire race on deck, and reportedly nearly always on the helm. As the Kingstown-Queenstown Race is going to be sailed again on July 9th 2020 to bring the Irish Sea fleets to the Tricentenary, by the time the fleets converge for the Review of July 12th, his achievements will be even better appreciated.

Once the Review has been completed, Volvo Cork Week 2020 gets underway on Monday July 13th, and includes the ICRA Nats and the European IRC Championship. But with demands on boats being at such a height, the Inter-services Racing for the Beaufort Cup, won by Commandant Barry Byrne and the Defence Forces crew in 2016 and 2018, is currently scheduled to be staged on Monday 20th July.

Meanwhile, the many cruisers which have been assembling will be heading west in a cruising tradition which is probably as old as the Royal Cork itself, and certainly was very central to the two-year Quarter Millennial celebrations in 1969-70. With Volvo Cork Week in full swing in and off the harbour, the pace will be different, but we can expect the RCYC to take it all in its stride, as they have been doing for three hundred years.

thunder child13The offshore powerboat Thunder Child, a project of Safehaven Marine led by Frank Kowalski, holds the Round Ireland & Rockall Record. The Cork300 programme will include a Powerboat Festival featuring a race to the Fastnet Rock and back to Cork Harbour.

And included somewhere in all this will be a major powerboat race. John Ryan of County Wicklow and Frank Kowalski of Safehaven Marine in Youghal have been upping the ante on serious offshore powerboat records with an Irish connection in recent years, and most appropriately the Royal Cork is the custodian of a trophy for the fastest powerboat time from Cork Harbour to the Fastnet Rock and back.

It’s appropriate because, somewhere at the heart of the current Royal Cork clubhouse building complex, there’s what was originally the 1923-built Cork Motor-Boat Club designed by architect Jim Buchan. They’d no sooner got it built than sailing types began moving in, then the Royal Munster YC from Monkstown moved down and took over, and then in 1967 the Royal Cork from its old base in Cobh moved across harbour for a reverse takeover of the Royal Munster in which, in due course, the Royal Munster was swallowed completely, with Crosshaven now home to the Royal Cork Yacht Club.

cork harbour motorboat club14Architect Jim Buchan’s design for the Cork Harbour Motorboat Club at Crosshaven in 1923, which was quickly absorbed into the Royal Munster YC and enlarged, and then further enlarged after the RMYC was amalgamated with the Royal Cork YC in 1967.

But what goes round comes round. Those motor-boaters of 1923 will be remembered. The accessibility theme which Colin Morehead and his team have been taking as the core of their Tricentenary programme has a very positive attitude towards grown-up powerboat racing, and another main event around a Powerboat Festival on 11th July will be a race to the Fastnet, and maybe on to the Skelligs as well. After three hundred years, if the RCYC think it might be worth giving it a whirl, a whirl is what it will get.

The programme is being adjusted to take account of boat availability realities, but at the moment the basic form in Cork Harbour is:

  • Friday 3rd July-Sunday 5th July: Seafest
  • Saturday 4th July-Tuesday 7th July: Feeder Cruises arrival
  • Saturday 4th July-11th July: Water Club Cup (Inter-club, 1720 Sportsboats)
  • Tuesday 7th July-Saturday 11th July:
  • Cruise Fest: Fleet/Class/Gatherings; Classic & Supperyacht Gatherings; Traditional Boat Gathering: Naval Gathering; Harbour Support Events; Feeder Races Arrivals.
  • Saturday July 11th: Powerboat Festival
  • Sunday 12th July: Fleet Review (all boats)
  • Monday July 13th Cruises in company depart
  • Monday July 13th – Friday July 17th Volvo Cork Week including ICRA Nats.
  • Saturday July 18th – Saturday July 25th: Glandore Classic Regatta
  • Monday July 20th Beaufort Cup
  • August – Championship Weeks back-to-back for National 18s, Lasers and Optimists

As we said at the beginning, this is only a very broad strokes outline stage – precision is emerging with every passing day. And as Autumn 2020 takes over, we hope that somebody remembers that, back in 1970 to round out the Quarter Millennium, the Royal Cork staged the annual Helmsman’s Championship, as it then was. Of the six finalists, five are still happily with us – Harold Cudmore, Maurice Butler, Owen Delaney, Michael O’Rahilly and the winner, Robert Dix. With the Royal Cork finally winding down a little after this Year of Years, some sort of Golden Jubilee event for them in the conclusion of Tricentennial Celebrations surely could be fitted in?

rcyc large15 Crosshaven, home of the Royal Cork Yacht Club. Could there be a more natural place to enjoy sailing? Set among green fields in a friendly village with a commodious yet sheltered harbour immediately accessible, and an interesting coastline on open sea within easy reach – Crosshaven has it all.

Published in Cork300

Scribbler, my Sigma 33 yacht, was hauled ashore this week. Now she stands in her cradle in Castlepoint Boatyard in Crosshaven in Cork Harbour for her out-of-the-water winter rest. It is the annual end-of-season ritual. There are owners who don’t any more do an off-season haul-out. They winter on a marina, or on sheltered moorings and only haul for a hull-clean prior to the start of the new season. There are the particularly fortunate owners who can ‘winter’ their boats close to their homes, nicely at hand for the off-season maintenance work!

I come from the ‘old school’ thinking that it is best to ‘give the boat a dry-out.’ GRP, the plastic boats, benefit from it, I was told from the first boat purchase I made. Not everyone agrees these days but, whatever the off-season decision for your boat, the atmosphere that is about is definitely ‘end-of-season,’ with Autumnal and October cruiser Leagues concluding this weekend at clubs around the country.

More boats will be hauled ashore over the next week or so. There are the hardy souls in cruisers who sail on into December, when the weather can often be magnanimous, the dinghy sailors who do so year-round and the Lasers who ‘frostbite’.

As Scribbler was ‘laid-up’ this week I got to thinking about the perennial questions – why do we have boats, why do we go out in them and, of course, are they worth the expense and the effort needed to keep them going?

One of the best – and humorous – answers to those questions which I have heard came from Bro. Anthony Keane, who has been so much involved in the restoration of the famous Ilen. From Leitrim originally, he has been a monk at Glenstal Abbey since 1965 and his study of theology and wood in which he is quite an expert, as shown in the Ilen project, has enabled him to enjoin the topics with the maritime sphere and boating. I’ve admired the content of speeches he has made at the various stages of Ilen’s restoration and its launch and reported them here.

He was particularly outstanding at the launch of the restored Dublin Bay 21, Naneen, in Kilrush last month when I recorded his dissertation on why we have boats and go to sea. I’ve been waiting for the right moment to broadcast it, which has come with this week’s ‘hauling’ reflections.

Bro. Anthony’s thoughts on boats are worth listening to!

Listen to the Podcast below

Published in Boatyards
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The UK's largest port operator, Associated British Ports (ABP) is calling on all UK technology companies to help overcome specific operational challenges in the maritime industry.

ABP is partnering with the Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN), to run the EnSiX Challenge Competition, which invites UK businesses to provide innovative solutions to help boost efficiency and sustainability. KTN is the network partner for Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by a grant-in-aid from the UK Government.

The competition will run until the end of October and will address three main areas: reducing emissions from heavy lifting equipment at ports; systems and processes which can enhance equipment operator training and provide assisted inspection tools; and, novel alternative approaches to vessel propulsion systems.

As the industry strives to be zero carbon by 2050, ABP is looking to partner with UK businesses to provide energy saving, emissions reduction and efficiency boosting measures which can improve the sustainability of port operations. The winning businesses will be given a commercial opportunity to then work with ABP to develop and roll out new technology across its network of 21 ports across England, Scotland and Wales.

Mike McCartain, ABP’s Group Director of Safety, Marine and Engineering, said: “Improving efficiency and delivering more sustainable services to our customers is part of our ongoing commitment. The UK can be immensely proud of its engineering heritage and we are drawing on this pool of world-class talent to help us meet these challenges.”

Colin Tattam, Director, KTN, said: “KTN is delighted to support ABP’s drive to sustainable port services. The Innovation Exchange programme provides a sector agnostic approach to promoting innovation challenges. The opportunity for SMEs to pitch their cross-sector solutions to a major operator such as ABP is a key factor in helping innovation flourish.”

Published in Ports & Shipping

European Maritime Day (EMD) 2020 will take place on 14-15 May in Cork Harbour, it has been announced by the European Commission. 

EMD is the annual EU meeting point on maritime affairs and a sustainable blue economy.

It targets maritime professionals, entrepreneurs and ocean leaders.

The event and exhibition will take place on 14-15 May 2020 in the City Hall of Cork and is co-organised by the European Commission, the City of Cork and ‘Our Ocean Wealth’ Summit.

In a special year for the harbour, the Summit will take place in the same year as the Royal Cork Yacht Club celebrates its 300th anniversary as the oldest yacht club in the world.

As in the previous years, European Maritime Day stakeholders’ workshops are at the core of the conference. For 2020, the European Commission is planning to select 20 high-quality workshops (four slots with 5 workshops running in parallel) and organisers have launched a call for stakeholders' workshops.

Please follow the link here for more information on the draft programme and about how to get involved.

Published in Cork Harbour
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Anthony O'Leary's 1720 sportsboat Antix leads after four of Royal Cork Yacht Club's Horgan's Quay Cork Autumn Series held today in Cork Harbour writes Bob Bateman. 

Second in the six-boat fleet is Tom Durcan and Clive O'Shea's T Bone two points behind O'Leary. Third is Gary Rhodes Heroes & Villains.

Over 70 boats are competing across 11 divisions in the premier South Coast Autumn series that has also attracted entries from Kinsale and Waterford Harbour. 

royal cork autumn league1Tight racing in the six boat 1720 class Photo: Bob Bateman

In the IRC divisions, Conor Phelan's Ker 37 Jump Juice continues to lead in Class Zero IRC. Phelan is two points clear at the top of the in the six-boat fleet over club mate Denis Murphy's Grand Soleil 40 Nieulargo. 

The RCYC leaders have established a good margin over a third-placed Kinsale entry, the Salona 45 Meridian skippered by Tom Roche.

royal cork autumn league1The Salona 45 Meridian skippered by Tom Roche on port tack Photo: Bob Bateman

In eight boat Class One IRC, Kinsale's Elan 333 Artful Dodger (Finbarr O'Regan) leads from Ronan & John Downing's Half-Tonner Miss Whiplash. Third is Paul & Deirdre Tingle's X-34 Alpaca. 

There were great conditions again for racing in Cork Harbour in just under 10 knots of breeze.

royal cork autumn league1Alan Mulcahy's Quarter Tonner Runaway Bus from Kinsale Yacht Club Photo: Bob Bateman

Denis Byrne's Trapper T250 Cracker from Royal Cork Yacht Club has eeked out a three-point lead over the early Cove Sailing Club leader in eight boat class two IRC. The CSC Sonar, No Half Measures skippered by Ewan O'Keeffe is now second but still ahead of Waterford Harbour Sigma 33 visitor Flyover steered by David Marchant. 

royal cork autumn league1Denis Ellis's Mazu, a First 35 from Cove Sailing Club competes in Whitesail One Photo: Bob Bateman

The Whitesail One division continues to be led by Derry Good's X 362 Sport Exhale. Likewise in the seven boat White Sail Two fleet where Kieran O Brian's MG335, Magnet stays on top.

royal cork autumn league1

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Published in Royal Cork YC

Crosshaven RNLI rescued two sailors this evening after their catamaran dinghy capsized East of the Spit Lighthouse within Cork Harbour. The Crew of Crosshaven RNLI received pagers at 5.35 pm and launched with James Fegan in command and Caoimhe Foster, Alan Venner and Derek Moynan also on board and made best speed to the area. On scene, the cold and wet crew were transferred from the hull of the vessel to the lifeboat and a medical assessment was made. The Crosshaven Coast Guard RIB also arrived on scene and it was decided they would get the crew ashore as quickly as possible and back to their warm car at White Point. The volunteer RNLI crew righted the upturned vessel and towed it to the slip at White Point for retrieval.

Conditions in the harbour were relatively calm with a NW Force 3-4 wind.

Speaking after the service, JP. English, Deputy launching authority, commended the RNLI crew for their speed of response and the casualty crew for staying with their vessel whilst awaiting rescue. He reminded water users “to always carry a means of calling for help, and to Respect the Water at all times.”

Shore crew on this service were Jonathan Birmingham, Paddy Quinlan, Susanne Deane, JP English, Claire Morgan and Vincent Fleming.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Yesterday's Combined Clubs September Sailing Events in Cork Harbour saw Royal Cork Yacht Club stage the annual Naval Race writes Bob Bateman

A 16-knot southerly wind allowed RCYC Race Officer Peter Webster set a course east of No.11 buoy to send the fleet on a beat out to the mouth of the harbour to no. 3  buoy.

The fleet enjoyed a run back into the Harbour, a turn to port up the Cobh Roads before finishing off Haulbowline at the Naval Base.

See Bob Bateman Photo Gallery Below

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Published in Royal Cork YC

There some clean sweeps across the eight classes at Royal Cork Yacht Club's 2019 Dinghy Fest Championships held in Cork Harbour at the weekend writes Bob Bateman.

One of the biggest fleets of the weekend was the 19-boat Rankin World Championships fleet. Conor and Robbie English sailing ARC from the host club were runaway winners with wins in each of the five races. Second was Cobh Sailing Club's Ewan and David O Keeffe with Dan O'Connell John Hales third. The size of the victory in the 19-boat fleet also bestowed overall Dinghyfest Championship Status on the English brothers.

DinghyFest2 20191Racing for Rankin Dinghy World Honours at DinghyFest 2019 Photo: Bob Bateman

Three firsts and three seconds gave Royal Cork's Harry Twomey and Harry Durcan a three-point winning margin in the 12-point 29er Southern Championships. Clubmates Lola and Atlee Kohl sailing Illegal Entry were second with Dublin Bay's Elysia O'Leary crewed by RCYC's Chris Bateman third. 

DinghyFest2 20191Royal Cork's Harry Twomey and Harry Durcan

In a clean sweep for Belfast Lough in the Irish Multihull Championships, Adrian Allen and Barry Swanston of Ballyholme Yacht Club were winners by four points after six races in the ten boat fleet. Clubmates Matthew and James McNicholl were second and Mat McMurtry and Emma Greer were third.

DinghyFest2 20191Formula 18s raced for Irish Multihull honours

DinghyFest2 20191The Port of Cork sent a Pilot Boat to visit DinghyFest 2019 at Crosshaven

There appears to be no stopping Eoghan Duffy and Cathal Langan in the Mirror class this season and the Mirror Southern Championships raced as part of DinghyFest was no different. The Lough Ree Yacht Club duo lost the opening race of six but won the remaining to win by nine points overall. Second was another Lough Ree Yacht Club pair Luke Johnston and Sarah White with Jessica and Mark Greer from Sligo Yacht Club third. 

Ewan Barry, Stanley Browne and Richard Leonard sailing Stormy D are the new National 18 Champions by three points after six races sailed in an 11-boat fleet. The trio won three races to be ahead of the Johnny Durcan skippered Aquaholics. Charles Dwyer's Shark II sailing with John Coakley and Peter Stokes, the winners of August's Cock O' The North trophy, were third. 

DinghyFest2 20191Close racing for National 18s at a DinghyFest 2019 Weather Mark

In the 19-boat RS 200 Southern Championships fleet, Olympic Finn campaigner, Fionn Lyden sailing with Amy Harrington from Baltimore Sailing Club were overall winners with Donal O'Halloran and Nigel Young sailing under the burgee of Royal Cornwall YC were second. Erica Ruigrok and Sally Bell from Rush Sailing Club were third.

DinghyFest2 20191Fionn Lyden sailing with Amy Harrington in the RS200

In th smaller seven boat RS 400 fleet, thiRSty sailed by Govan Berridge David Coleman of Killaloe Sailing Club won after six races sailed from RCYC's Luke McGrath and Cian Jones. Third was Playbuoy sailed by Northern Ireland's Ryan Glynn and William Findlay from Strangford Sailing Club.

DinghyFest2 20191RS400 racing

Finally, Harry and Simon Pritchard from Monkstown Bay Sailing Club were winners of the RS Feva Southern Championships with six straight wins in the ten boat class. Cork Harbour crews Patrick Bruen and James Murphy were second with David Mcsweeney and George O Keeffe third.  

See photo gallery below by Bob Bateman. Overall results here

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Published in Royal Cork YC

Paul Tingle's Alpaca and Ronan Downing's Miss Whiplash shared the Cork Harbour spoils of victory in the annual Cobh to Blackrock Race sponsored by Horgan's Quay yesterday writes Bob Bateman.

Alpaca, an X34, was declared the winner in Class 1 ECHO and IRC and the Half Tonner Miss Whiplash was the overall winner in Class 2 ECHO and IRC according to results published by organisers Cove Sailing Club here

The fleet included Stephen McCarthy's new X44 yacht, Nadie from Kinsale Yacht Club.

As Afloat reported earlier, this year's race, staged in the centenary year of CSC, attracted a new sponsor and a fine fleet of 45 cruisers for the race up the River Lee to the Port of Cork Marina.

See Bob Bateman's Photo Gallery from the race start below

Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Cobh Blackrock race1Port of Cork MarinaPort of Cork Marina

Published in Cork Harbour

Cove Sailing club’s Cobh to Blackrock Race takes place tomorrow with over 45 entries signed up for the annual Cork Harbour race.

As Afloat reported earlier, the weather forecast looks promising for the end of season fixture that takes place on the same date as RCYC's DinghyFest Regatta at Crosshaven.

As regular Afloat readers will know, CSC is celebrating 100 years in 2019 and are delighted to have new sponsor Horgan’s Quay on board for the cruiser event.

Published in Cork Harbour
Page 10 of 81

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

Cork Harbour Festival & Ocean to City Race

Following the cancellation of the 2020 event, Cork Harbour Festival will now take place 5 – 13 June 2021, with the Flagship Ocean to City An Rás Mór on 5 June.

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