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France won the 2021 eSailing Nations Cup last week beating Great Britain in the final. The individual world title was won by Spaniard Carlos Parejo.

A huge weekend in eSailing saw two major tournaments come to a close. The eSailing Nations Cup final saw France take on Great Britain in the live virtual final, while the eSailing World Championship featured the ten qualifiers in a winner take all.

In the Nations Cup Final, a tense battle saw France emerge victorious 5-4 over defending champions Team GBR in the best of nine series.

The French team was captained by Alexandre Gouin (MCES Sinjid) and featured Barbara Cavyn (Barbie22), Stéphane Galzin (MCES ValentineLisa), François Méheut (COOL FanchVR), Tangi le Goff (MCES_tangi), Luc Pruvot (Ginsu 2000), David Krief (Juyfra), Xavier Noblin (COOL xav-nice), Cyril Boivin (Cricqueville), Baptiste Gully (LaMerNoire), Tristan Péron (UOL_asere), Tim Carpentier (MCES pepito) and Elouan le Coq (L1).

Fifteen nations began the season, which is exclusively open to nations who have registered for an eSailing National Championship this year and will see national teams of ten participate in mass fleet races with knockout rounds, before advancing to quarter and semi-finals.

France and Great Britain were the two left standing after Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, The Netherlands, Oman, Turkey, Poland, Russia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland had all been eliminated.

Italy beat Spain 5-4 in the bronze medal race. All finalists receive a cap and rum from Mount Gay.

Meanwhile, Spanish eSailor Carlos Parejo (UOL Carlos Parejo) shocked the fleet as he came from way back in the eSailing World Championship final medal race to earn double points and take the win away from favourite and race leader Tristan Péron (UOL_asere) of France. The 19-year-old from Sevilla was surrounded by his family and crossed the finishing line to raucous cheers, claiming the $10,000 USD grand prize courtesy of Virtual Regatta along with a red cap and rum from Mount Gay.

The final was staged over eight races, using Star, Nacra 1, Laser, J70, 49er and F50 boats. The final medal race took place on the J70.

Final rankings:

1. Carlos Parejo (UOL Carlos Parejo) – ESP

2. Francisco Pinheiro de Melo (VIT – Chico) - POR

3. Tim Carpentier (MCES pepito) - FRA

The grand final was the culmination of a season lasting ten months with week-long regattas throughout the year to determine qualifiers. Rocco Guerra (MCES rock) from Italy secured his spot in the final in March by winning the America’s Cup. Tristan Peron (UOL_asere) of France qualified in June after winning the inaugural Olympic Virtual Series.

The eSailing World Championship rankings closed in September with Great Britain’s Arthur Farley (VIT Arthur Farley) top of the leader board and an automatic qualifier for the final. Mike O'Donovan (Deja Vu) from Great Britain secured his place at the eSailGP Final in October.

Playoffs held in October left 747 players racing for the final six spots in the final. A total of 1982 over the decisive weekend narrows the fleet down to the top ten eSailing players of the year.

The Nations Cup and eSailing World Championships Final was watched by 52,000 unique viewers, a record for the finals.

Scott Over, World Sailing Commercial Director, said, “Since launching in 2020, the Nations Cup has added an exciting new dimension to eSailing. To go into the final weekend with 15 registered national teams shows excellent progress and with more national championships taking place every month, the future of eSailing looks bright. The action and emotion showed during the Nations Cup races and World Championship final today was truly inspiring. We fully expect more countries to sign up to take part in 2022 and raise the level of competition to new heights.”

Managing Director of Mount Gay, Raphaël Grisoni commented, “The eSailing competitions have made the sport more accessible, more popular and brought the community together in new ways. During a period where racing on the water had been on an enforced break, the opportunity to support eSailing was more important than ever. We are proud to be able to give back to the sport of sailing and show appreciation for those who have always supported Mount Gay.”

Philippe Guigne, founder and CEO of Virtual Regatta, added, “This season’s eSailing Nations Cup and World Championships have been a huge success. The event has been a hit since the very first year and on the back of the Olympic Virtual Series we have seen more players than ever before, along with more viewers than before. The level of competition has improved every year and we now look ahead to the next season.”

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The nine-month season has come to an end, concluding with the eSailing World Championship PlayOffs which took place this weekend (1st – 4th October), and the eSailGP Grand Finale. The ten places at the Live Final have now been decided!

Four spots were awarded automatically through some of the top events in the season. The America’s Cup Champion from Italy Rocco Guerra (MCES rock) secured his spot early on in the year in March and the inaugural Olympic Virtual Series winner decided one spot that was taken by Tristan Peron (UOL asere) of France in June. When the eSailing World Championship rankings ended in September, the top of the leader board Arthur Farley (VIT Arthur Farley) from Britain secured his seat at the final. The eSailGP Final on the 15th October was the last automatic qualification spot up for grabs which was snatched by Mike O’Donovan (Deja Vu) from GBR.

Arthur Farley from GBR is looking forward to the final and commented that he is "really happy to have won my spot in the eSailing World Championship Final after being ranked number 1 player in the world rankings 2021. Lots of races and time but it all paid off! My focus is now on eSailGP grand final, eSailing Nations cup and the final!"

That left the 747 players in the eSailing World Championship PlayOffs to compete for the remaining six places in the ten-player final, scheduled to take place live on 6 November. 1982 races took place throughout the PlayOffs, with each player doing an average distance of 1220 nautical miles! The PlayOffs were raced in the 49er in the virtual waters of San Francisco, the Nacra 17 in Sydney and the J/70 in Rio de Janeiro.

21 countries were represented in the PlayOffs, and the 2021 Finalists include players from Portugal, Greece and Japan for the first time.

Francisco Melo (Chico), representing Portugal in the eSailing World Championship after coming 1st in the PlayOffs, and also currently part of team Portugal in the eSailing Nations Cup tournament said it was "Very tough racing with always 2/3 top players in the race, not an easy course, a lot of shifts but feeling very comfortable in J70 and manage to qualify! Didn’t sailed as much in some of the other boats (49er and Nacra 17 ). Now into finals!"

Greece’s Yannis Kokonias (Grr-9), proudly becoming the first Greek eSailor to take a place in the final said "Everything was judged in only 1-2 races in a series of 20, I am satisfied that I reached my target of qualifying with the fewest races and playing fair to everyone as I try to do in all season."

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The 2021 eSailing World Championship will be launched today as the race to win this year’s title – and a prize of USD $10,000 – officially begins.

Launched in partnership between World Sailing, the International Federation for the sport, and Virtual Regatta, the world-leading digital sailing platform, this year will be the fourth season following the launch of the inaugural Championship in 2018.

Last year’s World Champion was Joan Cardona (ESP), a real-life member of Spain SailGP Team, following on from Velista71 (ITA) in 2019 and L1 (FRA) in 2018.

All players are now invited to play and compete in the 2021 World Championship on Virtual Regatta Inshore via Desktop, iOS or Android.

Today’s launch starts the season off with the first-ever Mount Gay Challenge – a week-long event made up of three days of training, a three-day qualifier and a final.

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It's arguably the case that the best way through lock-down is to assume it's all going to last a bit longer – maybe a lot longer - than most people think. Thus the most effective way to negotiate your way through it is to give yourself over with total dedication to the alternative virtual pursuits which have emerged online as the outside world comes to a halt, such that - in your enclosed little world - the time flies entertainingly by.

Thus although there were old salts whose response to the new availability of the Virtual Regatta in April 2020 was to grumble that if they wanted a nautical version of an entertainment arcade then they'd have long since been going to a nautical entertainment arcade, there were many others – almost a thousand – who have taken to it with enthusiasm.

The precise number since April 2020 is 960, and from it there emerged the ten top Irish eSailors of such ability that they reached international standards and two of them – Colin Kavanagh of Howth YC, and Cillian Dickson of Lough Ree YC (and HYC) – contested the final, with Colin Kavanagh emerging as the champion.

Far from being a screen addict, he's very much of the real world, racing in the local intensity of the Puppeteer 22 Class as the continuation of a sailing career which started with Mirrors at Sutton aged 12, and went on through Laser 2s, offshore 40-footers, 1720s, and Etchells 22s, while a couple of years as an instructor gave him a taste for serving sailing, such that he is now an Irish Sailing Board Member and has been on the Olympic Steering Group since 2013.

In the current pandemic stasis, he's the perfect guide for the Howth Yacht Club-hosted eRacing Introductory on Wednesday evening (January 20th) at 7 pm – sign on here

Published in Esailing

Great Britain have been crowned the world’s best eSailing nation following a 6-3 victory over Spain in the inaugural eSailing Nations Cup Final.

After a month-long competition that featured 13 leading eSailing nations, Great Britain, captained by Mike O’Donovan aka @dejavusailing, convincingly beat Spain across the nine-race series. The series of races featured different classes, fleet sizes and racecourses that tested the teams' depth and performance.

Streamed across the Olympic Channel and across World Sailing’s Channels – click here to watch back – the Final welcomed two teams of ten that included at least one male and one female, one captain, two certified sailors and the top four sailors from the National Championships.

Great Britain came out with intent and advanced to a 2-0 lead. Spain pulled a race back but the next three races went the way of Great Britain who sealed the deal with three races to spare.

Team captain @dejavusailing commented, “It was some really tight racing. There were some high heart beats. We were aiming for the races that were slightly earlier. We weren’t expecting much for the ten v tens but having won the 49er race it was good to have that boost going into the further races.”

Great Britain got off to the perfect start in the first race of the Final. In a ten v ten fleet race in the 49er, the team with the lowest cumulative points score, based on the low point scoring system, would take the race victory.

TP52 (GBR) clinched the fleet race win for his nation and was followed by four Spanish rivals. However, a stream of British sailors followed and, with 103 points compared to Spain’s 107, they were able to claim the victory.

The second race of the series was a Match Race in the Star between the top two female racers. Isswizz (GBR) took on Patri Reino (ESP) in a race that saw both eSailors share the lead. However, the victory was decided on the final downwind as isswizz put enough wind shadow over Patri Reino to claim the race win in a photo finish, putting Great Britain 2-0 up.

Spain pulled a point back in the third race of the series, a 5v5 ILCA Dinghy fleet race. A dominant performance by the Spanish team saw Louis54TOP and Samuel Beneyto take the top two spots that handed them the victory.

In the 3v3 eF50 race, Spain grabbed the early initiative and were on track to take the victory. However, LDLN_Bandido (ESP) disconnected, which handed Great Britain the initiative. @dejavusailing, Bell Rock and Hugh Brayshaw capitalised and grabbed the victory for Great Britain to put them 3-1 up.

Great Britain extended their lead to 4-1 in the 2v2 J/70 fleet race. Joan Cardona (ESP) won the race and was followed by Great Britain’s Speedy_1 and @dejavusailing in second and third. Hector Dominguez (ESP) finished in fourth. As the scores were tied, the rules of the event stated that those not holding first place would take the win which meant the race went the way of Great Britain.

With match point to Great Britain, Spain sent in Cruzolator to face @dejavusailing in the sixth race, a match race in the Star. The race ebbed and flowed as the rivals shared the lead. On the final leg to the finish, Cruzolator inflicted a penalty on @dejavusailing and grabbed the advantage. But @dejavusailing remained in contention and it went to a photo finish that was judged to have gone the way of @dejavusailing as he claimed the eSailing Nations Cup title for Great Britain.

Three further races were held but the victory had already been secured for the British team.

Spain picked up victory in race 7, a 3v3 J/70 race, and in race 8, a 2v2 eF50 race. Great Britain picked up a convincing victory in the final race of the series, a 10v10 Nacra 17 race, to seal a 6-3 victory.

Up next for eSailing is the eSailing World Championship Final which will be held on Saturday 7 November from 21:00 UTC. British eSailing Nations Cup Champions @dejavusailing and Donnie Gillies will be on the startline and will be joined by Nations Cup rivals Joan Cardona, Cruzolator and [email protected] from Spain. Further contenders include StipecoachCROATIA (CRO), Kaan Mazlumca (TUR), MCES valentinelisa (FRA) and MCES pepitõ (FRA).

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On Friday 6 November, Great Britain and Spain will go head-to-head in the inaugural eSailing Nations Cup Final starting at 21:00 UTC.

Great Britain captain, Mike O'Donovan, and Spain captain, Carlos Paz, will lead their teams of ten in a best-of-nine race series. Different classes, fleet sizes and racecourses will be used to test the teams’ depth and performance, with the best all-round team claiming the title of best eSailing nation.

The third eSailing World Championship Final will commence at 21:00 UTC on Saturday 7 November. The top eight qualifiers plus the eSailGP champion will compete in a seven-race format, which concludes with a deciding Medal Race.

Both Finals will be streamed live on the Olympic Channel and across World Sailing’s channels.

Scott Over, World Sailing’s Commercial Director, commented, "We are delighted to receive the support of the Olympic Channel to broadcast two huge eSailing events this coming weekend. Participation and engagement within the eSailing community continues to grow.

"We believe we are the first eSport to be broadcast live on the Olympic Channel and their support marks another positive step forward for the global awareness of eSailing."

Philippe Guige, Founder and CEO of Virtual Regatta, World Sailing’s eSailing Partner, commented, "Through our partnership with World Sailing, the global presence of eSailing continues to expand and grow each month. We are excited to be working with World Sailing to bring the eSailing World Championship and Nations Cup Final to the Olympic Channel and showcasing the discipline to their global community of sports fans."

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A group of Irish sailors and ex-pats that have been esailing during lockdown are sailing online again in the second round of COVID-restrictions.

Hicks VR sailing club is a group of like-minded people from all over the world that enjoy evenings racing on the Virtual Regatta platform, says one of the organisers, note dinghy sailor and coach Graeme Grant.

The sailors use Zoom to enhance the social aspect of the evenings racing often accompanied by 'cold refreshments', says Grant.

The Club is free to join and a wide range of sailors have participated in past series, 'young, old, fast and frustrated'.

Sailors currently racing also include Mick Farrell, Ronan Downing from Royal Cork, Graeme Grant, race judge Cxema Pico, Ron Finegan and GP 14 sailor Colman Grimes.

To join the fun for the upcoming frostbite series, the best thing to do is message the club on Facebook for the WhatsApp group.

Racing is from 9 pm - 10.30 (ish) Irish time. There are five races per evening scheduled. Zoom opens early for a warm-up race at 8.40 pm

A warm-up evening from 9 pm in a variety of classes was held last night for the proposed Frostbite series is:

  • 29th October J70s
  • 5th November 49er
  • 12th November Laser
  • 19th November Star
  • 26th November J70

One discard per evening, or one evening discard. Results via Whatsapp. Rules by VR platform.

Prizes and support are from the series sponsor Colman Grimes Estate Agents.

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The latest Irish Sailing eSailing National Championship leaderboard reveals the top 10 qualifiers for the Nations Cup playoffs — and the challengers nipping at their heels for the coveted national title.

Irish Sailing’s first eChampionships were launched in early April, and since then 960 Irish players have signed up.

The top 10 ranked Irish sailors on 1 September 2020 will automatically represent Ireland at the eSailing World Championship Finals Playoff which will take place later this month.

Colin Kavanagh of Howth Yacht Club topped the board with Cillian Dickson in second (Howth and Lough Ree).

In third is Olympic sailor Finn Lynch (National YC), who just pipped Roisín McCormack (Foynes YC), president of the Mermaid Sailing Association, for the place.

Making up the rest of the top 10 are Mick Farrell, Paul McLaughlin, Graeme Grant, Andrew Baker, Tom Fox and Ronan Downing.

But it’s the top 20 who will now fight for the position of Irish eSailing National Champion.

The rest of the table in hunt for the national title comprises Ryan Seaton, Colin O’Sullivan, Chris Raymond, Shane Hughes, Max Tipp-McKnight, Cian Mollen, Atlee Kohl, James O’Connor, Michael Lynch and Daniel Raymond.

Playoffs for the domestic championship will be held on Tuesdays 3 and 10 November, with three races each, organised by Emmett Dalton of Howth Yacht Club. The first night will be raced in virtual J70s, followed by 49ers.

Irish Sailing says it wants to encourage as many people as possible to get sailing — with eSailing just one more aspect of this.

“We hope that by engaging with a brand new audience of eSailors, we’ll be able to convert them to real life sailors in the future,” the governing body added.

Irish Sailing teamed up with World Sailing and Virtual Regatta to launch the Irish eSailing National Championship in the middle of the coronavirus restrictions.

The game is free to play online or via app — and with the launch of the Irish version, local players can register as Irish and aim for the top of a new national leaderboard.

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Carlingford Lough YC hasn’t been idle during the lockdown as members have enjoyed a Virtual Regatta, starting in early April, thanks to the RYA who arranged for sailing clubs to have a free subscription. To date, the club has had 165 races, 11 series of 15 races each.

CLYC is situated at Killowen on the northern shore of the dramatic sea lough straddling the border on the east coast, with Slieve Martin as a backdrop and the Cooley Mountains opposite, giving a broad expanse of water for water sports. For excitement within the lough mini-tornadoes or ‘kettles’ form during strong south-westerlies when squalls funnel down from the 600m high Slieve Foye in Co Louth.

Replacing all this activity on the water has been the racing in the Virtual Regatta which takes place every Wednesday and Sunday and all competitors join on a simultaneous Zoom session. This helps as everybody knows what is going on, rather than hanging around the start line wondering where everybody else is. It also allows hailing such as “starboard”, “you tack” and other polite exclamations! This is still going strong and although the dinghies are now sailing and dinghy courses continuing, normal racing has not yet resumed, although efforts are being made to have the cruisers racing on Saturdays.

Fourteen competitors and others from various parts of the globe including Ireland, North and South, England and Spain have taken part and there has been racing in Denmark, New Zealand, Italy, France, Germany, US, Spain, UK, and Australia. The class of boat is normally the J/70, but this has varied from time to time.
After 11 series overall leader is Typhoon 26 with 125 points, with Sulky Sue second on 126 points, followed by Far Niente (225 pts) and Legless (284 pts).
Kieran Cranley from CLYC says “

If you wish to join in email [email protected] and we can give you instructions about how the Zoom sessions and Virtual Regatta are organised. The craic is good, and the excitement is truly amazing!”

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Newcastle Yacht Club’s Luke McIlwaine has claimed fifth spot in the RYA eSailing Spring Club Championship after battling it out against nine other competitors.

The other sailors came from right across the regional and home countries. Instead of taking to the water, this time they logged on to compete against their fellow racers virtually, in a series of five races with two discards.

With live commentary from Yachts & Yachting’s Mark Jardine and RYA Pathway coach Johnny McGovern, who himself competed in the eSailing Lockdown Cup and was part of the winning ‘Splashes’ team, racing was extremely tight throughout the championship final.

A total of 2,932 sailors, from 178 different clubs from across the RYA regions and the home countries, took part in the RYA eSailing Spring Club Championship, competing in club and regional championships before whittling down to just 10 finalists.

McIlwaine earned his spot in the final with his win in the Northern Ireland regional event last month.

RYA Northern Ireland’s chief operating officer Richard Honeyford said: “eSailing has been a fantastic way for our sailors to keep in touch and continue developing their race skills over the last few months while we were unable to get out on the water.

“Luke put in an impressive performance and we are delighted with his success.”

If you missed the action, you can still catch it on the RYA YouTube channel.

Next on the RYA’s eSailing calendar is the Spring Class Championship. For more visit

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