Menu
Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

In association with ISA Logo Irish Sailing

afloat sailing header

Sailing in Ireland. Sailors, Yachting, Clubs, Regattas
Ben Graf (53053) Lough Ree and Jack McDowell (54847) Malahide YC
Much to the satisfaction of RYA Northern Ireland and Ballyholme Yacht Club, splitting the 89 strong Youth Sailing Championship fleet over two days to mitigate risk in accordance with COVID – 19 guidelines, allowed the event to run smoothly with…
The RYA NI youth sailing championships at Ballyholme
More than 90 of Northern Ireland’s Youth and Junior sailors have taken part in the RYA Northern Ireland Youth Championships, which were hosted by Ballyholme Yacht Club. Racing took part of over two days on Saturday 19 and Sunday 20…
Action from last year’s Junior All Ireland Championships at Schull Harbour
The cancellation of the Irish Sailing All-Ireland Junior Championships this weekend is “a big disappointment” for all involved, both those competing and being the scenes, the governing body has said. As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the event scheduled for Schull…
Richard Moore in Usain boat prior to Race 1 on Strangford Lough
Last Sunday was the first day's racing for most of the RS Elites this year as a result of a Covid-19 hit 2020 season. Five boats made it onto Strangford Lough with the hope of another couple joining next weekend. …
Suntan Sailing beyond The Pale – SB20s on the Shannon lakes, with 3272 (John McGonigle, second left) throwing a judiciously-judged gybe which helped towards her overall win
At midnight on Friday, the lockdown shutters came down on the million-plus inhabitants of a place that no longer exists. And no, we don't mean that Dublin has obviously become a ghost town. But what we do mean is that…
1720 racing returns to Cork Harbour this weekend for Munster Championship Honours
This weekend's 1720 National Championships are to be downgraded to a Munster Championships in the wake of the recent government announcements that appeal to Dubliners not to travel outside the county. As Afloat reported previously, the Championships had already moved…
‘Breeze queen’ Annalise Murphy takes off in day one’s racing last Friday
The National Yacht Club’s Annalise Murphy held her lead over the 41-boat fleet to claim the Laser Radial open class title in the final racing of Italian Olympic Week at Follonica. Murphy’s third place finish yesterday (Sunday 20 September) was…
George Radley Jnr and crew on Creamy Beam, a vintage Sadler 25, competing in the Cobh to Blackrock Race
The Commodore of the South Coast Offshore Racing Association believes there are yachts "out there waiting for budding enthusiasts to give them a second or third chance" and which could be used to encourage the next generation of young sailors…
Finn Lynch (on port tack) on his way to seventh overall in Follonica, Italy
Two of Ireland's three Olympic men's Laser campaigners finished in the top ten of the Italian Olympic Week fleet today even though they didn't manage to sail the final race in Follonica. Howth's Ewan McMahon closed the gap on the…
Racing at the RCYC Optimist Burns Trophy. See Photo gallery below
After six races sailed with one discard at Royal Cork Yacht Club's Optimist Dinghy Class Burns Trophy Alana Twomey continues to lead the 24-boat main fleet in the month-long Cork Harbour series at Crosshaven. Lying second overall is JP Curtin with third place taken…
Tom Dolan on the podium after his stellar offshore podium in France
Armel Le Cléac’h (Banque Populaire) lifted the overall title for the 51st La Solitaire du Figaro at the end of race prizegiving in Saint Nazaire, France today. It is Le Cléach’s third time of winning after successes in 2003 and…
The RNLI’s summer lifeguard service has now ended for NI beaches
With the RNLI’s summer lifeguard service now ended for 2020, swimmers and surfers on Northern Ireland’s North Coast have been urged “to be extra vigilant”. The warning from Coleraine Coastguard comes after three swimmers got into difficulty at Castlerock Beach…
The Trapper Eleint was the 2019 DBSC Turkey Shoot winner
November's eight-race DBSC Turkey Shoot to run each Sunday from the 1st November to 20th December and hosted by the Royal Irish Yacht Club is the 20th edition of the popular series.  The short, sharp format of racing has earned…
Lufra winning the 1944 Menagerie Race at Ballyholme
It's 76 years since the Lufra Cup was first presented to the winner of Ballyholme's Menagerie Race, a pursuit event run traditionally to mark Closing Day when there was no such thing as Winter, let alone Autumn racing in Belfast…
Tom Dolan finishes fifth overall - It is the best ever Irish sailing result has been achieved in the Figaro Race
With not enough wind to run Stage 4 of La Solitaire du Figaro Ireland’s Tom Dolan secured an excellent fifth place overall on Smurfit Kappa. It is the best international overall placing in the historic French multi-stage offshore race series…
Brian Jones' Jelly Baby is expected to compete in next weekend's first race of the RCYC Autumn Series in Cork Harbour
Crosshaven is expecting a full turnout in both spinnaker and white sail divisions for next week's Royal Cork Yacht Club's Autumn Series and if the recent Cove Sailing Club's Blackrock Race and yesterday's RCYC Coastal Race is anything to go by then…

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]

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 Webcams

Featured Car Brands

subaru sidebutton

Featured Associations

ISA sidebutton dob
ICRA
isora sidebutton

Featured Events 2020

Wave button for Afloat new dates

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton

quantum sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
osm sidebutton
https://afloat.ie/resources/marine-industry-news/viking-marine

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Blogs

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

Please show your support for Afloat by donating