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Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

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Sailing in Ireland. Sailors, Yachting, Clubs, Regattas
LinkedOut! has damaged port foil overnight - skipper Thomas Ruyant says one option open to him is to cut the foil away
While lying in second place in the South Atlantic in the Vendee Globe Race, some 72 nautical miles behind leader Charlie Dalin (Apivia), Thomas Ruyant last night sustained damage to the port foil of his IMOCA LinkedOut. He had to…
Matt Allen, owner and skipper of 2019 overall winner Ichi Ban
The 76th running of the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race will be different this year with COVID-19 restrictions in place around the world, however, organisers say it has not diminished the quality of the fleet;…
Racing Rules of Sailing 2021-2024 RYA Edition is Out Now
Make sure you're ready for the 2021-2024 changes to the Racing Rules of Sailing with the RYA rules books. The new editions are now available from the RYA shop - www.rya.org.uk/shop. Updated every four years by World Sailing, the Racing…
A previous edition of the DBSC Turkey Shoot racing on Dublin Bay
Expectations are raised that winter sailing for cruisers in addition to two-handed dinghies will be possible in December if COVID restrictions are lifted later this week.  Sailing was part of a joint submission made to Government a fortnight ago that included…
Teasing Machine approaches Redonda
The 13th edition of the RORC Caribbean 600 is scheduled to start off Fort Charlotte, Antigua on Monday 22nd February 2021. “The RORC Flag Officers meet regularly and since July the overall commitment from the Club has been to provide…
Charlie Dalin in Apivia
Day 16: Charlie Dalin, Vendée Globe leader since yesterday morning, confirmed that he is in full ‘inshore mode, fighting for every metre I can gain,’ as he tries to break through to the southern ocean low-pressure train which should finally…
Peta Koczy (left) and Holly Vint
The UK's Ocean Youth Trust South announces the appointment of Holly Vint as staff skipper for the charity’s sail training vessel Prolific. Holly is taking over from Peta Koczy who, after four years with OYT South, is moving on to…
Bangor Marina's Christmas Lights show last year
Bangor's favourite band, Snow Patrol, are well known for the lines in their hit 'Run' - Light up, Light up. And that's what, in this year of endless restrictions, Kevin Baird Manager of Bangor Marina on Belfast Lough, would like…
Charlie Dalin's Apivia currently leads the Vendee Globe
Before the 33 boats went off from les Sables-d'Olonne on November 8th to start the Vendee Globe, there'd been much talk of the possibility of reducing Armel le Cleac'h's notable record of 74 days established in the 2016-2017 event. It…
Only a month to the shortest day of the year, yet late November at Howth produces hyper-strong sunshine with a sky so blue they haven't got a name for it yet
November sunshine plays tricks with how we see things. Maybe it's because it's so rare. But at the weekend at Howth – with just a month to go to the shortest day of the year – a special coaching course…
Charlie Dalin (Apivia) became the new race leader
On a sequence of gybes stepping downwind underneath the Saint Helena high-pressure system in the South Atlantic, Charlie Dalin (Apivia) became the new leader of the Vendée Globe yesterday. He outmanoeuvred his close rival Thomas Ruyant (LinkedOut) and went on…
Trading ship, sailing ship, school ship – the Ilen goes about her business in Kilrush, County Clare
The restored 1926-built 56ft Limerick trading ketch Ilen's project of education through action and involvement continues to be developed with the Ilen Marine School's Community and Cargo 2020-21 Programme. Transportation of cargo to coastal communities was the original purpose of…
Tom Dolan - one of a number of Irish campaigns for Paris 2024 in the new mixed offshore keelboat
The new Offshore Doubles organisation that aims to represent the growing interests of two-handed offshore sailing, the newest Olympic sailing discipline for Paris 2024, has announced that at the end of its first month of operation has 1,600 members from 66 countries…
Thomas Ruyant has climbed the 28-metre rig of Linkedout
Vendee Globe leader Thomas Ruyant (LInkedOut) had a busy night. Since the start, two weeks ago, he was lacking a halyard which has been jammed at the top of the mast. So the skipper climbed the 28-metre rig so he…
Peter Burling helming Team Brunel on the approach to New Zealand during the 2017-18 edition of The Ocean Race
New Zealand sailor Peter Burling has been announced as the 2020 winner of the prestigious Magnus Olsson Prize. Awarded annually by the Mange Olsson Foundation to an individual who has made an indelible contribution to the world of sailing, the…
The Atlantic Rally for Cruisers departs
Following years of planning, months of trepidation, days of stowing, and hours of farewells, over 300 crew set sail today from Las Palmas de Gran Canaria for the start of the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers - ARC 2020. It was…

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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