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"How To Go eRacing" Will Be Revealed on Wednesday Evening by Ireland's Champion of the eSailors

19th January 2021
eSailing champion – Howth's Colin Kavanagh spills the beans about successful eRacing online on Wednesday night eSailing champion – Howth's Colin Kavanagh spills the beans about successful eRacing online on Wednesday night

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, Howth YC
WM Nixon

About The Author

WM Nixon

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William M Nixon has been writing about sailing in Ireland for many years in print and online, and his work has appeared internationally in magazines and books. His own experience ranges from club sailing to international offshore events, and he has cruised extensively under sail, often in his own boats which have ranged in size from an 11ft dinghy to a 35ft cruiser-racer. He has also been involved in the administration of several sailing organisations.

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Esailing & Virtual Sailing information

The concept of e-sailing, or virtual sailing, is based on a computer game sailing challenge that has been around for more than a decade.

The research and development of software over this time means its popularity has taken off to the extent that it has now become a part of the sailing seascape and now allows people to take an 'active part' in some of the most famous regattas across the world such as the Vendée Globe, Route du Rhum, Sydney Hobart, Volvo Ocean Race, America’s Cup and some Olympic venues too, all from the comfort of their armchair.

The most popular model is the 'eSailing World Championship'. It is an annual esports competition, first held in 2018 and officially recognised by World Sailing, the sports governing body.

The eSailing World Championship is a yearly competition for virtual sailors competing on the Virtual Regatta Inshore game.

The contract to run the event was given to a private company, Virtual Regatta that had amassed tens of thousands of sailors playing offshore sailing routing game following major offshore races in real-time.

In April 2020, the company says on its website that it has 35,000 active players and 500,000 regattas sailed.

Virtual Regatta started in 2010 as a small team of passionate designers, engineers, and entrepreneurs gathered around the idea that virtual sailing sports games can mix with real races and real skippers.

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