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Latest Sailing Stories
Sea Cloud II passes Roches Point lighthouse on her arrival into Cork Harbour
"All I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by". The five-star Tall Ship Sea Cloud II arrived into Cork Harbour early this morning, her tall masts and sails evoking memories of times past for shipping in the Harbour writes Bob…
The Star Pride Cruise Liner alongside berth Number Two in Dun Laoghaire Harbour with the Dublin Port Pilot Boat 'Liffey' off her starboard bow
Yachts competing in tonight's Dublin Bay Sailing Club (DBSC) racing have been asked to avoid the Cruise Ship 'Star Pride' manoeuvring around number 2 berth and leaving the harbour at 6 pm tonight before Dublin Bay racing. In a communication to…
Tom Dolan speaks to reporters at the end of stage three
Ireland's Tom Dolan (Smurfit Kappa) achieved his best result of this, his second La Solitaire URGO Le Figaro, as he took a provisional eighth place, just ten seconds ahead of British rival Will Harris (Hive Energy) in ninth when he…
Robert O'Leary (left, bow number 61) competing at the Star World Championship in Italy
Australian Torvar Mirsky and Cork Harbour's Robert O'Leary are up to sixth overall at this week's Italian-based Star World Championships after three races sailed in Porto Cervo. The pair sailing the Irish Star Dafne now count a 16, 8, and 10 and are two points off…
Royal Cork’s Nick Walsh is a favourite for the Laser Standard Rig events
The next few weeks will be the busiest of the year for the Irish Laser fleet with three big events coming in quick succession writes Dave Quinn. The first of these is the Ulster Championships, being held in East Antrim Boat Club,…
Conor Fogerty's new foiling Figaro 3 'Raw' at the start of the Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race
Conor Fogerty's new Figaro 3 keelboat 'Raw' will be the only foiling keelboat racing at Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta next month in the former Sailor of the Year's lead up to August's Fastnet Race. After that, the new vessel stars at the…
Ross Nolan (left) and Gordon Patterson (right) receive their Championship prize from Howth Yacht Club Commodore Ian Byrne
Howth Yacht Club hosted nineteen boats for the Squib Eastern Championships sponsored by Provident CRM last weekend writes Ronan MacDonell, HYC Squib Class Captain. The event was run alongside the J24 Easterns which made for a busy clubhouse. While the weather…
Jibe presented with Eastern Championship trophy by Ian Byrne, Commodore Howth Yacht Club  (from left to right : Brian McDowell J/24 Association President, Fergus Kelliher, Ian Byrne Commodore HYC, Brendan Culloty, Michael McCormack, Timothy Kelliher, Mark Mulrooney)
The J/24 Eastern Championships took place last weekend at Howth Yacht Club writes Elaine O'Mahoney. The two-day event was run in conjunction with the Squib Easterns which made for a very busy lifting schedule for the cranes at HYC with thirty-five boats…
Royal Irish yacht D Tox (McSwiney, O’Rafferty, McStay & Sherry) competed in Tuesday's DBSC Combined Cruisers race
Race 1 Cruiser 3 Tuesday Echo: 1. Grasshopper 2, 2. Papytoo, 3. Pamafe Combined Cruisers: 1. Jalapeno, 2. D-Tox Sportsboat: 1. Sea Jade, 2. George 3, 3. Jay-Z Ruffian: 1. Bandit, 2. Carmen, 3. Icicle B211 One Design: 1. Billy…
High speed sailing in an SB20 on Dublin Bay with Ger Dempsey on the tiller
Saturday's planned SB20 Sprint Series on Dublin Bay has been cancelled.  The aim of the innovative sportsboat series was to run "lots of races back to back"  but Class President Colin Galavan said he had no option but to "cancel running…
Part of this year's D2D fleet assembled at the National Yacht Club prior to the race
Dun Laoghaire Dingle Race Chairman Adam Winkelmann has named the date for the next edition of the biennial offshore race as Wednesday 9th, June 2021. The 2021 280-mile race will start, as usual, from the National Yacht Club and Winkelmann says the race…
The Star Worlds are being held in Porto Cervo
Australian World Match Racing Tour skipper Torvar Mirsky who has teamed up with Cork Harbour's Robert O'Leary to race the sole Irish Star keelboat at this week's Italian-based World Championships is lying tenth overall after two races in Porto Cervo. Uncertain…
RORC's Morgan Cup starts on Friday 21 June at 7pm
 The Royal Ocean Racing Club's Season's Points Championship continues this weekend with the Morgan Cup. The seventh offshore race of the series will start on Friday 21 June at 7 pm from the Royal Yacht Squadron Line. Bound for Dieppe…
Neil Cramer (Class Chairman, L) with Ismail Inan (C) and Noel Butler (R) 2019 Ulster Fireball Champions
With a Worlds coming up in Montreal Canada in August 2019 and Ireland hosting the Worlds in August 2020 in Howth, as part of their 125th Anniversary celebrations, the Irish Fireball Family had their first outing of the regatta season…
Co-skipper urgently needed…..Yannick Lemonnier aboard the Mini 6.50 Port of Galway in Dun Laoghaire alongside Liam Burke’s Farr 31 Tribal, also from Galway
So much happened during the brief and hectic Volvo Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race 2019 that the stories emanating from it will run and run for a long time writes W M Nixon. And of course in trying to keep…
Vincent Delany (left) with HYC Commodore Ian Byrne (centre) and Noel Colclough finished third overall
This ever-popular Squib Championship hosted by Howth Yacht Club was supported by a somewhat unusual list of competitors, firstly Peter Wallace, current Irish Squib Champion’s Toy for the Boys broke free from it’s moorings and went up on the rocks at Belfast…

How to sail, sailing clubs and sailing boats plus news on the wide range of sailing events on Irish waters forms the backbone of Afloat's sailing coverage.

We aim to encompass the widest range of activities undertaken on Irish lakes, rivers and coastal waters. This page describes those sailing activites in more detail and provides links and breakdowns of what you can expect from our sailing pages. We aim to bring jargon free reports separated in to popular categories to promote the sport of sailing in Ireland.

The packed 2013 sailing season sees the usual regular summer leagues and there are regular weekly race reports from Dublin Bay Sailing Club, Howth and Cork Harbour on Afloat.ie. This season and last also featured an array of top class events coming to these shores. Each year there is ICRA's Cruiser Nationals starts and every other year the Round Ireland Yacht Race starts and ends in Wicklow and all this action before July. Crosshaven's Cork Week kicks off on in early July every other year. in 2012 Ireland hosted some big international events too,  the ISAF Youth Worlds in Dun Laoghaire and in August the Tall Ships Race sailed into Dublin on its final leg. In that year the Dragon Gold Cup set sail in Kinsale in too.

2013 is also packed with Kinsale hosting the IFDS diabled world sailing championships in Kinsale and the same port is also hosting the Sovereign's Cup. The action moves to the east coast in July with the staging of the country's biggest regatta, the Volvo Dun Laoghaire regatta from July 11.

Our coverage though is not restricted to the Republic of Ireland but encompasses Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and the Irish Sea area too. In this section you'll find information on the Irish Sailing Association and Irish sailors. There's sailing reports on regattas, racing, training, cruising, dinghies and keelboat classes, windsurfers, disabled sailing, sailing cruisers, Olympic sailing and Tall Ships sections plus youth sailing, match racing and team racing coverage too.

Sailing Club News

There is a network of over 70 sailing clubs in Ireland and we invite all clubs to submit details of their activities for inclusion in our daily website updates. There are dedicated sections given over to the big Irish clubs such as  the waterfront clubs in Dun Laoghaire; Dublin Bay Sailing Club, the Royal Saint George Yacht Club,  the Royal Irish Yacht Club and the National Yacht Club. In Munster we regularly feature the work of Kinsale Yacht Club and Royal Cork Yacht Club in Crosshaven.  Abroad Irish sailors compete in Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC) racing in the UK and this club is covered too. Click here for Afloat's full list of sailing club information. We are keen to increase our coverage on the network of clubs from around the coast so if you would like to send us news and views of a local interest please let us have it by sending an email to [email protected]

Sailing Boats and Classes

Over 20 active dinghy and one design classes race in Irish waters and fleet sizes range from just a dozen or so right up to over 100 boats in the case of some of the biggest classes such as the Laser or Optimist dinghies for national and regional championships. Afloat has dedicated pages for each class: Dragons, Etchells, Fireball, Flying Fifteen, GP14, J24's, J80's, Laser, Sigma 33, RS Sailing, Star, Squibs, TopperMirror, Mermaids, National 18, Optimist, Puppeteers, SB3's, and Wayfarers. For more resources on Irish classes go to our dedicated sailing classes page.

The big boat scene represents up to 60% of the sail boat racing in these waters and Afloat carries updates from the Irish Cruiser Racer Association (ICRA), the body responsible for administering cruiser racing in Ireland and the popular annual ICRA National Championships. In 2010 an Irish team won the RORC Commodore's Cup putting Irish cruiser racing at an all time high. Popular cruiser fleets in Ireland are raced right around the coast but naturally the biggest fleets are in the biggest sailing centres in Cork Harbour and Dublin Bay. Cruisers race from a modest 20 feet or so right up to 50'. Racing is typically divided in to Cruisers Zero, Cruisers One, Cruisers Two, Cruisers Three and Cruisers Four. A current trend over the past few seasons has been the introduction of a White Sail division that is attracting big fleets.

Traditionally sailing in northern Europe and Ireland used to occur only in some months but now thanks to the advent of a network of marinas around the coast (and some would say milder winters) there are a number of popular winter leagues running right over the Christmas and winter periods.

Sailing Events

Punching well above its weight Irish sailing has staged some of the world's top events including the Volvo Ocean Race Galway Stopover, Tall Ships visits as well as dozens of class world and European Championships including the Laser Worlds, the Fireball Worlds in both Dun Laoghaire and Sligo.

Some of these events are no longer pure sailing regattas and have become major public maritime festivals some are the biggest of all public staged events. In the past few seasons Ireland has hosted events such as La Solitaire du Figaro and the ISAF Dublin Bay 2012 Youth Worlds.

There is a lively domestic racing scene for both inshore and offshore sailing. A national sailing calendar of summer fixtures is published annually and it includes old favorites such as Sovereign's Cup, Calves Week, Dun Laoghaire to Dingle, All Ireland Sailing Championships as well as new events with international appeal such as the Round Britain and Ireland Race and the Clipper Round the World Race, both of which have visited Ireland.

The bulk of the work on running events though is carried out by the network of sailing clubs around the coast and this is mostly a voluntary effort by people committed to the sport of sailing. For example Wicklow Sailing Club's Round Ireland yacht race run in association with the Royal Ocean Racing Club has been operating for over 30 years. Similarly the international Cork Week regatta has attracted over 500 boats in past editions and has also been running for over 30 years.  In recent years Dublin Bay has revived its own regatta called Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta and can claim to be the country's biggest event with over 550 boats entered in 2009.

On the international stage Afloat carries news of Irish and UK interest on Olympics 2012, Sydney to Hobart, Volvo Ocean Race, Cowes Week and the Fastnet Race.

We're always aiming to build on our sailing content. We're keen to build on areas such as online guides on learning to sail in Irish sailing schools, navigation and sailing holidays. If you have ideas for our pages we'd love to hear from you. Please email us at [email protected]

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