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Displaying items by tag: Pat Lawless

While Ireland is battered by the multiple surges of Storm Ellen, the irrepressible Pat Lawless of Ballyferriter on the Dingle Peninsula is riding it out on the southern fringes of the huge weather system, halfway home from the Azores in his robust Saltram Saga 36.

His boat Iniscealtra is a modern variant on the classic Colin Archer concept, and Pat is building up ocean miles towards participation in the 2022 Golden Globe Race.

The word from the far southwest of Ireland is that he’d been looking for something approaching real Southern Ocean weather in the North Atlantic, and It looks as though the south side of Storm Ellen has obliged. For now, we’re told that all is well on board as the Ballyferriter man rides it out under bare poles aboard Iniscealtra, named after the renowned holy island on Lough Derg.

Pat Lawless aboard IniscealtraPat Lawless aboard IniscealtraWhile the winds halfway between the Azores and Ireland may not be as severe as some of those experienced in Ireland in the last 18 hours, Iniscealtra has still been experiencing full Atlantic gales

Published in Golden Globe Race
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Independent analysis on media coverage during the 2018 Golden Globe Race says the event attracted worldwide coverage worth as much as US$185 million.

Les Sables d’Olonne, which will be the host start and finish port again in 2022, gained two years of international publicity valued at €16.5 million.

And Falmouth — which hosted the pre-race Suhaili 50 Parade of Sail, celebrating the 50th anniversary of Sir Robin Knox-Johnston’s departure in the original 1986 Sunday Times Golden Globe, as well as the start of the SITraN Challenge race to Les Sables d’Olonne — gained £1.85m (US$2.38m) from its three days of events.

Golden Globe Race founder Don McIntyre said today: “What a fantastic, solid result for a unique original adventure created by a small passionate management team with low budgets.

“It confirms the support and huge following the 2018 GGR achieved from ordinary people interested in a simple, back to basics human endeavour. No fluff; just an honest, down-to-earth non-stop solo race around the world that media understand.

“We must also thank the passion of our French fans and our enthusiastic host port and logistics partner Les Sables d'Olonne, Ville and Agglomeration. The GGR family continues to grow, ensuring the 2022 edition will be an even bigger success.”

Yannick Moreau, Mayor of Les Sables d’Olonne and president of the Agglomeration said: “For a first edition, the GGR has been an international success. I am looking forward to the second edition from Les Sables d’Olonne on September 4, 2022.”

With three years to go until the start of the next Golden Globe Race, only one ordinary and five special invitation spots are available with 22 Suhaili Class entrants already paid up — among them 63-year old Pat Lawless from Ballyferriter, Co Kerry.

Pat will be following in the wake of his late father who completed his own circumnavigation of the world in 1996 at the age of 70 — and aims to finish what Gregor McGuckin started in on the 50th anniversary of the original Golden Globe.

Published in Golden Globe Race
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As the awards day for the 2018 Golden Globe Race is taking place today (Monday 22 April) in Les Sables, applications for invites to join the next Golden Globe Race in 2022 are now open — and one of those hopeful to join the global solo voyagers is Irish fisherman Pat Lawless.

Born in bred in Limerick on the banks of the River Shannon, Pat comes from a solo offshore sailing pedigree as his late father, also named Pat, completed his own circumnavigation of the world (in separate stages) in 1996 at the age of 70 — and since had a river festival named in his honour.

Pat Junior now lives in Ballyferriter, Co Kerry, the most westerly village in Europe, with his wife and two of his four children, and makes furniture for a living.

However, over the last six decades Pat has amassed around 150,000km on the water between sailing and fishing.

Now he aims to finish what Conor McGuckin started in the 50th anniversary of the Golden Globe Race and become the first Irishman to do a non-stop, unassisted solo circumnavigation of the world.

As Pat’s nephew Patrick Stritch explains to Afloat.ie, the boat he’s selected for the task is a Saltram Saga 36.

“Alan Papa designed her as a development of the Colin Archer ‘Redmingskoite’ sailing lifeboat hull, from which for many years have been regarded as being amongst the most sea-worthy around and even substantially faster than the original,” says Patrick.

“They are a mighty fine boat for the Southern Ocean, able to hold on to working sail in strong winds, without healing more than 20 degrees.”

Pat will have the next three years to get to know every aspect of his boat like the back of his hand before the next Golden Globe Race sets off from France on 21 August 2022.

This date commemorates the anniversary of Bernard Moitessier setting off in the original Sunday Times Golden Globe in 1968, and a new one-design class based on his famous yacht Joshua has been added for the next edition.

Published in Solo Sailing

The current Vendee Globe Race non-stop round the world is deservedly attracting enough attention without having to make over-stated claims on behalf of some of its participants writes W M Nixon.

The official website is today carrying a story that if Enda O’Coineen can succeed in his plan of sailing his dismasted IMOCA 60 Kilcullen Voyager from Dunedin at the south end of New Zealand under jury rig to Auckland 800 miles away to the north, where a loaned replacement masts awaits, then if he can continue the voyage back to les Sables d’Olonne round Cape Horn he will become the first Irishman to sail solo round the world.

Not so. Noted Dublin marine artist Pete Hogan, who sailed solo round the world in his gaff ketch Molly B, said today that the number of misapprehensions about who was first doing what in the Irish circumnavigation stakes is astonishing.

For instance, when he rounded Cape Horn in the 1990s, he was acclaimed as the first Irishman to do it alone, for of course Conor O’Brien had done it with the crewed Saoirse in 1925. Yet Pete Hogan found it very difficult to get anyone to listen when he subsequently tried to set the record by saying that Bill King of Galway with the junk-rigged ketch Galway Blazer was the first solo, and that was way back in 1973.

The fact that Bill King was a distinguished former British submarine commander may have projected the image of being non-Irish. But in fact he flew both the Irish tricolour and the
British red ensign, and his home was Oranmore Castle at the head of Galway Bay.

irish solo2Bill King’s purpose-designed Galway Blazer circumnavigated the world solo south of the great Capes in 1973.

Since then, other Irish sailors who have striven to circumnavigate include Declan Mackell, originally from Portaferry but Canadian-based by the time he undertook his voyage in a Contessa 32, with which he returned home to Ireland for a prolonged stay during his circuit.

Another lone circumnavigator, Pat Lawless of Limerick who completed his voyage with a Seadog ketch in 1996 at the age of 70, had hoped to take in Cape Horn, but rigging damage forced him into a Chilean port, and eventually he returned to Ireland via the Panama Canal. But his circuit was definitely completed, and completed alone.

And Pete Hogan believes there may be one or two other Irish lone circumnavigators who have done it without fanfare. For not everyone seeks the kind of publicity which the Vendee Globe inevitably provides.

Pat Lawless solo sailorLimerick circumnavigator – the irrepressible Pat Lawless aboard his world-girdling Seadog ketch

Published in Vendee Globe

#shannon – A new festival named in honour of a Limerick man who famously completed a solo circumnavigation of the world will take place along the banks of the River Shannon in Limerick City on Sunday June 8th next.

Organised and funded by the Mid West Regional Authority (MWRA) through its participation in a European Programme for developing and promoting the watersports sector in Europe's Atlantic Area, the 'Pat Lawless Sail and Oar Festival' will celebrate Limerick's status as a riverside city and will feature a series of events on the river.

For spectators gathered on either side of the river at Harvey's Quay and Clancy Strand, there will be Rowing and Sailing Regattas, a historic kayak tour of Limerick City and a Gandelow boat demonstration.

The late Pat Lawless made international headlines in 1996 when the then 70-year-old sailed his 30-foot vessel, the Seadog, up the Shannon Estuary on the final leg of his 30,000-mile around the world voyage. Mr. Lawless, who was from the South Circular Road and was a member of the Iniscealtra Sailing Club in Mountshannon, passed away in 2010.

Majella O'Brien, EU Projects Officer with the MWRA explained that the upcoming festival is part of its ongoing efforts through the NEA2 project to develop and promote the watersports sector in the Mid West Region.

"Lough Derg, the River Shannon and the Estuary are intrinsically linked with the economic and social history of this region. The potential of these waterways for tourism development remains underexplored however. By hosting the 'Pat Lawless Sail and Oar Festival" we want to demonstrate this potential to our European project partners," she said.

Ms. O'Brien continued: "Through our participation in the NEA2 programme and by working in conjunction with other regional development agencies, the MWRA will continue to look for new ways that this region can build on existing marine leisure initiatives to help inform and develop new opportunities for sustainable development of water sports on our rivers, lakes and coastline. In doing so, we could attract thousands of additional visitors to the Mid West Region each year."

"We are particularly delighted to be able to host a river festival in honour of Pat Lawless whose crossings of the Atlantic Ocean and solo circumnavigation of the world brought great pride to Limerick and the wider region," she concluded.

The 'Pat Lawless Sail and Oar Festival' takes place in Limerick City on Sunday June 8th next. 

Published in Maritime Festivals
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Dublin Bay

Dublin Bay on the east coast of Ireland stretches over seven kilometres, from Howth Head on its northern tip to Dalkey Island in the south. It's a place most Dubliners simply take for granted, and one of the capital's least visited places. But there's more going on out there than you'd imagine.

The biggest boating centre is at Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the Bay's south shore that is home to over 1,500 pleasure craft, four waterfront yacht clubs and Ireland's largest marina.

The bay is rather shallow with many sandbanks and rocky outcrops, and was notorious in the past for shipwrecks, especially when the wind was from the east. Until modern times, many ships and their passengers were lost along the treacherous coastline from Howth to Dun Laoghaire, less than a kilometre from shore.

The Bay is a C-shaped inlet of the Irish Sea and is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and 7 km in length to its apex at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south. North Bull Island is situated in the northwest part of the bay, where one of two major inshore sandbanks lie, and features a 5 km long sandy beach, Dollymount Strand, fronting an internationally recognised wildfowl reserve. Many of the rivers of Dublin reach the Irish Sea at Dublin Bay: the River Liffey, with the River Dodder flow received less than 1 km inland, River Tolka, and various smaller rivers and streams.

Dublin Bay FAQs

There are approximately ten beaches and bathing spots around Dublin Bay: Dollymount Strand; Forty Foot Bathing Place; Half Moon bathing spot; Merrion Strand; Bull Wall; Sandycove Beach; Sandymount Strand; Seapoint; Shelley Banks; Sutton, Burrow Beach

There are slipways on the north side of Dublin Bay at Clontarf, Sutton and on the southside at Dun Laoghaire Harbour, and in Dalkey at Coliemore and Bulloch Harbours.

Dublin Bay is administered by a number of Government Departments, three local authorities and several statutory agencies. Dublin Port Company is in charge of navigation on the Bay.

Dublin Bay is approximately 70 sq kilometres or 7,000 hectares. The Bay is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and seven km in length east-west to its peak at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south.

Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the southside of the Bay has an East and West Pier, each one kilometre long; this is one of the largest human-made harbours in the world. There also piers or walls at the entrance to the River Liffey at Dublin city known as the Great North and South Walls. Other harbours on the Bay include Bulloch Harbour and Coliemore Harbours both at Dalkey.

There are two marinas on Dublin Bay. Ireland's largest marina with over 800 berths is on the southern shore at Dun Laoghaire Harbour. The other is at Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club on the River Liffey close to Dublin City.

Car and passenger Ferries operate from Dublin Port to the UK, Isle of Man and France. A passenger ferry operates from Dun Laoghaire Harbour to Howth as well as providing tourist voyages around the bay.

Dublin Bay has two Islands. Bull Island at Clontarf and Dalkey Island on the southern shore of the Bay.

The River Liffey flows through Dublin city and into the Bay. Its tributaries include the River Dodder, the River Poddle and the River Camac.

Dollymount, Burrow and Seapoint beaches

Approximately 1,500 boats from small dinghies to motorboats to ocean-going yachts. The vast majority, over 1,000, are moored at Dun Laoghaire Harbour which is Ireland's boating capital.

In 1981, UNESCO recognised the importance of Dublin Bay by designating North Bull Island as a Biosphere because of its rare and internationally important habitats and species of wildlife. To support sustainable development, UNESCO’s concept of a Biosphere has evolved to include not just areas of ecological value but also the areas around them and the communities that live and work within these areas. There have since been additional international and national designations, covering much of Dublin Bay, to ensure the protection of its water quality and biodiversity. To fulfil these broader management aims for the ecosystem, the Biosphere was expanded in 2015. The Biosphere now covers Dublin Bay, reflecting its significant environmental, economic, cultural and tourism importance, and extends to over 300km² to include the bay, the shore and nearby residential areas.

On the Southside at Dun Laoghaire, there is the National Yacht Club, Royal St. George Yacht Club, Royal Irish Yacht Club and Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club as well as Dublin Bay Sailing Club. In the city centre, there is Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club. On the Northside of Dublin, there is Clontarf Yacht and Boat Club and Sutton Dinghy Club. While not on Dublin Bay, Howth Yacht Club is the major north Dublin Sailing centre.

© Afloat 2020