Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

UK Sailmakers One Design Success in 1720 Euros, First 31.7s and Ruffians 23s

18th August 2022

UK Sailmakers Ireland celebrates One Design sailing success this season with a stunning 1,2,3 at the 1720 European Championships at Cork Week in July.

The loft is also celebrating title wins in July's Ruffian National Championships and August's Beneteau 31.7s National Championships, both held on Dublin Bay. 


Congratulations to Ross McDonald, David Kenefick and Robert Dix, who all sailed with complete sets of UK sails to fill the podium at the 1720 European Championships.

Robert Dix's 1720 Photo: Deirdre HorganRobert Dix's 1720 Photo: Deirdre Horgan

These boats all have the McWilliam Superkote 75 Asymmetric, which are proven race winners.

They also have our upgraded XD07BP X Drive Carbon racing upwind sails, including main and headsail upgrades.

Ruffian 23 

With two national championship wins in a row for Ann Kirwan and Brian Cullen in Bandit on Dublin Bay, the change in racing Dacron to 280AP HTP Dacron material is proving unstoppable.

Ann Kirwan and Brian Cullen's Ruffian 23 BanditAnn Kirwan and Brian Cullen's Ruffian 23 Bandit Photo: Afloat

Our racing-winning designs, which I developed in Hong Kong over 14 years of Ruffian sailing, have been given further tweaks for Irish waters.

First 31.7s 

Chris Johnson's XD sails won the day for his First 31.7 Prospect crew at last weekend's 2022 National Championships on Dublin Bay.

Chris Johnston's First 31.7 ProspectChris Johnston's First 31.7 Prospect Photo: Afloat

The latest designs in XD 07BP XD Carbon also gave Nick Holman's First 31.7 a massive boost to take him to second place overall.

Busy Loft

Fairing Asymmetric kite seams at the busy UK Sailmakers Ireland loft this summerFairing Asymmetric kite seams at the busy UK Sailmakers Ireland loft this summer

We were busy building sails all summer. We built eight 1720 spinnakers in time for Cork Week, Dublin Bay Mermaid Sails, Howth 17 sails, and lots more, all in time for each national championship.

As sailmakers, we do not just design sails for boats. We design and build sails for your boat. Our extensive and versatile product line allows us to produce sails to suit your requirements and expectations. Call us for a quote.

The new loft Sheltie puppy, Bert, keeps an eye on spinnaker productionThe new loft Sheltie puppy, Bert, keeps an eye on spinnaker production

Read more about UK Sailmakers Ireland on their new website here

About the Loft

UK Sailmakers Ireland brings modern professional sailmaking to Irish Sailing.​ Formerly known as McWilliam Sailmakers; the company was started 47 years ago to bring the latest technology to Irish sailors - we continue this mission today.

Under new leadership in 2018; our loft is dedicated to fulfilling the needs of all Irish sailors. ​As sailmakers, we do not just design sails for boats. We design and build sails for your boat. Our extensive and versatile product line allows us to produce sails to suit your requirements and expectations.   

​As a core loft within the UK Sailmakers Group, we are uniquely placed to draw from a worldwide pool of knowledge and experience - these ties have been recently strengthened with the return of Barry Hayes and Claire Morgan from Hong Kong. ​Barry held a key role in our primary production facility on Hong Kong Island for the past fifteen years. With their return comes a renewed focus on technology R&D on Irish waters.  

​With a wide variety of sailing conditions and an impressive pool of talent, the Irish cruiser racing fleet is the ideal testbed for new technologies.​ 

​As with all things in sailing; the secrets will be closely guarded - but for the first time in decades Irish sailors will be at the forefront of sail technology development.​

Although much has changed; some constants remain. The same great sail and customer service we have provided in the past will continue, as does our commitment and passion for growing the sport of sailing all over the country. 

Barry Hayes [email protected]

Contact Information:

UK Sailmakers Ireland

Hoddersfield Mill


County Cork

P43 EY26

Republic of Ireland

Tel: +353 21 4831505

Fax: +353 21 4831700

Email: [email protected]

Barry Hayes

About The Author

Barry Hayes

Email The Author

Barry Hayes, Director of UK Sails Ireland, managed the main UK Production facility for UK Sails in Hong Kong until last October and has been a sail designer with UK sails for over 15 years.

We've got a favour to ask

More people are reading than ever thanks to the power of the internet but we're in stormy seas because advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. Unlike many news sites, we haven’t put up a paywall because we want to keep our marine journalism open. is Ireland's only full–time marine journalism team and it takes time, money and hard work to produce our content.

So you can see why we need to ask for your help.

If everyone chipped in, we can enhance our coverage and our future would be more secure. You can help us through a small donation. Thank you.

Direct Donation to Afloat button

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

dbsc mainbutton
Howth Yacht Club
Kinsale Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club
Royal Saint George Yacht Club

Featured Brokers

leinster sidebutton

Featured Associations

isora sidebutton

Featured Webcams

Featured Events 2022

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
osm sidebutton

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton
quantum sidebutton
watson sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
mansfield sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
wavelengths sidebutton

Please show your support for Afloat by donating