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Volvo Dun Laoghaire Dingle Race Reaches 50-Boat Limit

6th March 2021
Times past - There was a windy start to the 2009 Dun Laoghaire Dingle Race where Mick Cotter's Whisper set a course record. The 2021 race is set for a June 9th start
Times past - There was a windy start to the 2009 Dun Laoghaire Dingle Race where Mick Cotter's Whisper (above) set a course record. The 2021 race is set for a June 9th start Credit: Afloat

The 2021 Volvo Dun Laoghaire Dingle Race has reached its 50-boat limit for the National Yacht Club fixture, bringing the club closer to rolling out a spectacular June offshore fixture starting from Dublin Bay.

The 50-boat limit has been made for practical reasons at the County Kerry finish of the 280-miler at Dingle, one of Europe's most westerly harbours.

Afloat's WM Nixon predicts the biennial fixture will be the race that should get sailing going again, if Covid restrictions are lifted.

Such restrictions are uppermost in the mind of Race Chairman Adam Winkelmann who told today's 2021 ICRA conference by Zoom that the biennial race is in 'great shape' but he is waiting for the next government Covid announcement in order to finalise plans. 

The Greystones Harbour JOD Red Alert shortly after the 2019 Dun Laoghaire startThe Greystones Harbour JOD Red Alert shortly after the 2019 Dun Laoghaire Dingle start Photo: Afloat

A notice on the event website says "in these uncertain times, we may have to request some boats not to take part or some competitors may be forced to withdraw their entries".

Winklemann told ICRA that if the restrictions do not permit the race to go ahead on June 9th, then a decision has already been made to "push the event out until its next staging in June 2023".

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Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Yacht Race Information

The biennial Dun Laoghaire to Dingle race is a 320-miles race down to the east coast of Ireland, across the south coast and into Dingle harbour in County Kerry.

The race is organised by the National Yacht Club.

It never fails to offer a full range of weather, wind and tide to the intrepid entrants, ranging from a 32ft cruiser to a 79ft all-out racer.

Three divisions are available to enter: cruiser (boats equipped with furlers), racing (the bulk of the fleet) and also two-handed.

D2D Course change overruled

In 2019, the organisers considered changing the course to allow boats to select routes close to shore by removing the requirement to go outside Islands and Lighthouses en route, but following input from regular participants, the National Yacht Club decided to stick with the tried and tested course route in order to be fair to large and smaller boats and to keep race records intact.

RORC Points Calendar

The 2019 race was the first edition to form part of the Royal Ocean Racing Club “RORC” calendar for the season. This is in addition to the race continuing as part of the ISORA programme. 

D2D Course record time

Mick Cotter’s 78ft Whisper established the 1 day and 48 minutes course record for the Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race in 2009 and that time stood until 2019 when Cotter returned to beat his own record but only just, the Dun Laoghaire helmsman crossing the line in Kerry to shave just 20 seconds off his 2009 time.

Dun Laoghaire Dingle Race 2021

The 2021 Race will start from the National Yacht Club on Wednesday 9th, June 2021.

This will be a limited entry event.

Previous entrants will be offered early entry options and then the entry will be opened to others to allow up to a maximum of 50 yachts.

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