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Displaying items by tag: Cork Week

One-by-one they came in this week – cancellations of planned events. The Royal Cork’s 300th celebrations. I commiserated with the club’s Admiral, Colin Morehead. A tough decision for him in his first few months in office. Cork Week had to be abandoned. The Squib National Championships at Kinsale which, when I wrote last week’s column were still going ahead, were also cancelled as were many other planned events.

One of my favourites, the Classics at Glandore Harbour Yacht Club in West Cork, which I’ve sailed in several times, are set for July 18-24 and were to connect with the RCYC’s 300th.

Commodore, Eamon Timoney has told club members that GHYC is still committed to the Classic 2020 schedule but, things may change: “Our strategy is to plan for our various events, including the Classic Regatta until such time as a cancellation or postponement is required. The Committee will endeavour to do this in a timely way.”

Another of the major events in which I take particular interest and raced three times - the Round Ireland Yacht Race - is still set for Saturday, June 20. Wicklow Sailing Club says it will “make a call on whether or not to go ahead with the race towards the end of April.”

This weekend, my own club the RCYC closed its entire site including access to the marinas until Easter Sunday, April 12.

So what to do when the planned sailing season seems to collapse? My plan had been for installing some new electronics on Scribbler, my Sigma 33. I was looking forward to that, all planned when the crisis hit. Now she sits amongst many other boats in the boatyard as the sailing fraternity waits to see what will happen.

Upwind & Downwind Sailing

So I’ve been turning my mind to thoughts of that beautiful moment at the start of each season when Scribbler lifts to the first wave after she’s been launched and wondering when I will feel that moment this year.

In this frame of mind, I’ve been considering upwind and downwind sailing.

When I took up the sport I was told that upwind is “toughest and worst” as the boat and crew beat a course to reach the windward mark. When the sea is bouncy it sure is not pleasant. As a novice learner I was told that the reward came with “freeing sails” and “setting the spinnaker.”

How then to account for my feeling of anxiety and concern that seems to encase my thoughts when that forward-bearing cloth goes up. I’ve sailed on various boats with different owners and listened to the shouts of “sheet; no get the guy; no I said sheet in; for pity’s sake let it out, it’s going to twist….” Those instructions are not always couched in pleasant terms and more brusque and blunt words have been used.

I’ve ”flown the spinnaker” on yachts of my own and on other people’s, on boats of various sizes; in the Round Ireland; across the Atlantic in the Whitbread Round the World Race. My family crew love “getting the spinnaker up,” with obvious delight and a feeling of fulfilment when it fills and Scribbler pulls away with the power of the crinkling upfront sail…

So, is my view of spinnakers because my early experiences of cruisers, contrasted from an owner whose view was “best left at home in the attic,” or the enthusiast for having his multi-coloured spinnaker flying when, as we cruised on a nice day off Schull, sun shining, the water nicely flat, happy with a sandwich and a glass of wine when he announced he wanted the spinnaker up and one of my crewmates replied: “Oh no, just when we were all getting along so nicely…..”

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Published in Tom MacSweeney

Cork Week 2022 will take place July 11 to 15, 2022 at the Royal Cork Yacht Club in Cork Harbour.

The new dates were released by RCYC Admiral Colin Morehead after the world's oldest yacht club was forced to cancel its 300th celebrations planned for July 2020 in the face of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Read all Afloat's Cork Week stories here

Published in Cork Week

The Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC) in London says it is 'especially sympathetic' to the Royal Cork Yacht Club concerning their Tricentenary Celebration cancellations in July.

As Afloat reported earlier, the Cork Week Regatta, the IRC European Championships, and many other activities have all been cancelled.

The oldest yacht club in the world announced today that they took this difficult decision in conjunction with their partners to safeguard the health of sailors, visitors, volunteers and the community at large, and to give certainty to those participants and visitors who had scheduled to come to Cork in July.

RORC's Morgan Cup race, scheduled for 8th July was to act as a feeder race for the Cork Tricentenary Celebrations, however, due to the cancellation, the course will no longer head to Ireland. At this stage, there is no planned replacement course, but it likely to finish in the vicinity of the Solent.

RORC Racing Manager Chris Stone commented: "We are in extraordinary times and making these decisions, whilst unavoidable due to the Coronavirus pandemic, has still been very hard at the beginning of an exciting season of races. There is a huge amount of planning that goes into every race we run, so we can sympathise with the Royal Cork Yacht Club who have been in the planning process for many years. We will continue to monitor the pandemic and keep those who race with us fully informed in good time about the next races in the RORC Season's Point Championship."

In line with the continued COVID-19 Government guidance, as well as advice from many of the host finishing clubs in Europe, the RORC has, with regret, had to cancel or change a number of its key events.

The Cervantes Trophy race from Cowes, Isle of Wight to Le Havre, France scheduled for the 8th May has been cancelled. Le Havre port remains closed and is unlikely to re-open until later in May or early June. Members of the SRH (Société des Régates du Havre) and volunteers for this race have turned their attention to weekly Virtual Regatta inshore racing and drinks over their racing WhatsApp group - (Thursday nights for anyone interested).

RORC's North Sea Race which starts from Royal Harwich Yacht Club and sails to the Dutch port of Scheveningen has also been cancelled. The race - which was due to start on 22nd May - has traditionally joined forces with Scheveningen Yacht Club's North Sea Regatta (the Vuurschepen Offshore Race) which was to celebrate its 75th regatta anniversary. Dutch authorities have currently closed the port, the Club, and limited recreation activities until 1st June.

RORC has also elected to cancel the Vice Admiral's Cup Regatta, scheduled for 15th-17th May. In recent years, this inshore regatta has enjoyed considerable growth and has become a 'must-do' event for one-design and specialist classes. With competitors needing to confirm details for the regatta, and with the RORC Cowes Club House being closed in line with Government guidelines, it was felt prudent and in the interest of all parties to cancel the event early.

Published in RORC

A bumper 2020 Cork Week Regatta planned for July to celebrate Royal Cork Yacht Club's 300th birthday has been cancelled over the Covid-19 emergency.

All events scheduled in July for the Cork300 events series, which were to run across Cork Harbour to celebrate the Royal Cork Yacht Clubs 300th birthday, have been cancelled but RCYC are continuing planning now for August events.

The Club announced today that they took this difficult decision in conjunction with their partners to safeguard the health of sailors, visitors, volunteers and the community at large and to give certainty to those participants and visitors who had scheduled to come to Cork in July.

The celebrations scheduled to take place in July, which have now been cancelled, include Volvo Cork Week 2020 (in partnership with Johnson & Perrott), a Classic Yacht Regatta, a Cruise in Company with the Irish Cruising Club and other leading Cruising Clubs from America and Europe along the Wild Atlantic Way and a Royal Cork Fleet review and National and European yacht racing championships.

Cork Week MoreheadTanaiste Simon Coveney (left) with Royal Cork Admiral Colin Morehead at the launch of Cork Week 2020 last September

The Royal Cork are monitoring the ongoing Covid19 situation closely, but as of now, are continuing to plan for all of the remaining events scheduled from 1st August to end of December 2020.

Founded in 1720, the Royal Cork Yacht Club is the oldest yacht club in the world. As such, their special anniversary events were attracting National and International sailing communities to Cork from as far as Australia, Hong Kong and San Francisco who wanted to see “Where It All Began”.

Commenting, Chair of Cork300 and Admiral of the Royal Cork Yacht Club, Colin Morehead said, “It is with considerable regret and sadness that we have to cancel Volvo Cork Week 2020 and all other events throughout July. We are living in very uncertain times and the health of our members, our visitors, our city and country is now the main priority.”

“Over the last number of weeks, we have carefully monitored the developing global situation. We have taken continued guidance from Government Officials, the Health Service Executive, Irish Sailing and other experts in the hope that we would be able to proceed with our exciting schedule of events for July. We are very conscious that this decision will impact many visitors who have already booked to travel and participate and hope that making our decision at this stage will enable them to change their plans accordingly.”

"in the three hundred years since the foundation of the Royal Cork Yacht Club, we have faced many adversities"

“We are also very aware that this will be another blow to our local economy. However, in the three hundred years since the foundation of the Royal Cork Yacht Club, we have faced many adversities and are confident that working together, we will see the club, county, country and global sailing community come through these difficult times. Indeed we look forward to welcoming as many sailors as possible back to Cork Week in July 2022 ”

“I would like to thank our partners for their unwavering support – AIB (premier partner), Volvo Car Ireland (Cork Week title sponsor and Cork300 partner) our Foundation Partners the Port of Cork and Cork County Council and other Cork300 partners, Cork City Council, Heineken, Musto, Dubarry, and Doyle Shipping Group. Their support in recent weeks has been incredible. And to the voluntary committee and staff at the Royal Cork Yacht Club, along with supporting associations and clubs such as ICRA, RORC, Yacht Club de Monaco, Royal Yacht Squadron, Irish Cruising Association, Cruising Club of America and the Royal Cruising Club who have worked tirelessly over the past months and years to plan for the July events – my thanks.”

“Finally can I say that words cannot describe how thankful we all are for the hard work of everyone who is making significant sacrifices to keep us safe in these unprecedented times and to the sailing community, family and friends for your support as we navigate this uncertainty together – we truly value you, our community, more than ever.”

Also commenting, David Thomas, Managing Director Volvo Car Ireland said “Volvo Car Ireland are very proud of our long and successful association with Volvo Cork Week but fully support this difficult decision as being right for Cork, Ireland and the wider international sailing community. We hope that some of the planned events later in the year will still take place and will work closely with the Cork300 team and the Royal Cork Yacht Club around these future plans.”

"The ICRA board are now investigating the possibility of moving the 2020 National Championships"

Richard Colwell, ICRA Commodore commented, “ICRA fully support the RCYC team in their decision to cancel Volvo Cork Week incorporating the ICRA National Championships. It is a real shame that this hotly anticipated sailing event has fallen foul of the Coronavirus outbreak, but we fully understand the need to cancel, and we send our commiserations to the organising committee who have put so much hard work into an event that will not now run. The ICRA board are now investigating the possibility of moving the 2020 National Championships, to form part of an event which may still hopefully be held later in the year, and will announce more on this in the coming week.”

Published in Cork Harbour

The Royal Cork Yacht Club, the oldest yacht club in the world, has officially launched its prestigious Volvo Cork Week 2020 regatta, which will see hundreds of boats and thousands of yachtsmen and women from around the globe compete on the waters around Cork Harbour from July 13th – 17th.

This year’s Volvo Cork Week has extra special significance as it forms a key part of the Royal Cork Yacht Club’s historic ‘Cork300’ celebrations, marking what is the oldest yacht club in the world’s tricentenary.

The world-renowned biennial regatta is already attracting a bumper fleet of entries from all over the world including Monaco, Australia, Hong Kong and San Francisco. Famous boats already registered include the elegant 60ft gaff cutter 'Thalia'*, the competitive racing boat ‘Ran’* and the beautiful modern racing yacht ‘Tala'. The regatta is expected to book out quickly as many participants are travelling to Ireland for the tricentenary celebrations.

This year Volvo Cork Week will also incorporate The Irish Cruiser Racing Association National Championships, the IRC European Championship, the 1720 European Championships, the Beaufort Cup, a Classic Yacht regatta and the southern championships for the International Dragon Class.

ThaliaThalia - classic yacht is coming to Cork Week

All qualifying boats entered in Volvo Cork Week 2020 will automatically be entered into the ICRA National Championships, the pinnacle of the Irish inshore cruiser racing calendar which will see the Irish National Champion declared.

Volvo Cork Week has historically been regarded as a ‘must-do’ regatta on the international sailing calendar due to its unparalleled reputation for exhilarating competitive racing over a variety of race courses in fair sailing waters and its incredible line-up of post-racing off the water entertainment and social activity. As always, the atmosphere in Crosshaven, home of the Royal Cork Yacht Club, will be second to none both during and ahead of Volvo Cork Week 2020.

Volvo Cork Week Director of Racing, Rosscoe Deasy said: “I look forward to welcoming sailors from around the world to Cork Harbour in 2020 in celebration of the Royal Cork Yacht Club’s tri-centennial year. We have a packed schedule and the season’s centrepiece will be the renowned Volvo Cork Week in July. Notably, the 2020 regatta will also include championship events such as the IRC Europeans, the ICRA Nationals, the 1720 Europeans and the Beaufort Cup.

“Since 1978, every Cork Week has delivered a unique mix of top-notch competition afloat & top-class entertainment ashore, and next year will be no different. In fact, judging by the interest received and the stories of glory days already being retold, Volvo Cork Week 2020 will set a new standard on both counts. This event has been 300 years in the making, no sailor should miss it.”

Richard Colwell, Commodore of the Irish Cruising Racing Association said, “The ICRA is delighted to be partnering with the Royal Cork Yacht Club to hold the Irish Cruiser Racing National Championships as an integral part of Volvo Cork Week 2020. We encourage all of the cruiser racing fraternity in Ireland to travel and take part in what promises to be an exciting and competitive event, as part of Royal Cork’s broader Tricentenary celebrations. With visitors from countries all over Europe, it is important that Irish Cruiser Racing shows the strength that we have across all classes from White Sails to Cruiser 0 at the National Championships and so contribute to the competitive racing expected.”

1720 Sports Boat European Championships

A bumper fleet of more than 40 yachts from Ireland, UK, Netherlands, Spain and elsewhere around Europe is expected to compete in the 1720 Sports Boat European Championships as part of Volvo Cork Week 2020. The race committee is particularly pleased to host this European Championship event due in part to the fact that the original idea for the 1720 was conceived by a group of committed racing members of the Royal Cork Yacht Club. This distinctive class of boat also took its name from the year in which the club was founded.

Beaufort Cup

The third edition of the Beaufort Cup, the prestigious international inter-services sailing regatta, will also be hosted by the Royal Cork Yacht Club with the support of the Irish Defence Forces, during Volvo Cork Week. A specially commissioned perpetual trophy in honour of Sir Francis Beaufort, creator of the Beaufort Scale, will be presented to the overall winner of the regatta which will entail a mix of challenging offshore and tactical inshore racing, including an overnight race around the iconic Fastnet Rock and back to Cork. International teams from their associated national emergency services are invited to compete in this prestigious competition, with the proviso that 50% of each team must be active in the service they represent.

Classic Yacht Regatta

Volvo Cork Week will also host a dedicated Classic Yacht Regatta for the first time in 2020. Classic Yachts from around the globe will sail to Cork to celebrate ‘Where It All Began’ and partake in three days of racing in and outside Cork Harbour. This event will also provide a fantastic viewing spectacle for shoreline onlookers.

International Dragon Class

In addition to this, the International Dragon Class will return to Volvo Cork Week in 2020 following their very successful outing in 2018, to hold their Southern Championships in Cork.
Races to Cork:

A series of national and international races to Cork will take place in the run-up to the five-day regatta.

Morgan Cup: (Cowes England to Cork)

These include the highly prestigious Morgan Cup race – organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club since 1958 – which will cross the Celtic Sea to Cork for the first time ever with the support of the Royal Yacht Squadron and the Royal Cork Yacht Club. This 324nm race will carry an attractive points-weighting for the 2020 RORC Season Points Championship and is expected to attract a substantial fleet. The line honours winner for this race will be the first recipient of a specially commissioned perpetual trophy graciously donated to the Royal Cork Yacht Club by His Royal Highness, the Prince of Wales, to honour the club’s tricentenary and the close relationship between the United Kingdom, Ireland and its sailing communities.

Kingstown to Queenstown Race (Dublin to Cork)

Meanwhile, the historic Kingstown to Queenstown race from Dun Laoghaire to Cobh will take place on July 9th, enhancing the build up to Volvo Cork Week 2020 with a re-enactment of what is acknowledged as the first-ever offshore race to take place in the British Isles, in 1860.

Robbe and Berking German Offshore Trophy (Heligoland Germany to Cork)

A competitive fleet will also set sail on an 800nm race from Heligoland, Germany, to Cork, Ireland, on July 4th competing for the Robbe and Berking German Offshore Trophy, arriving ahead in Ireland of the historic Volvo Cork Week 2020.

Vice-Admiral of the Royal Cork Yacht Club and Cork300 Chairman, Colin Morehead, said: “The biennial Cork Week regatta has seen many friendships and memories created since it was first held in 1978. I would encourage everyone to return to Cork Harbour next year and join us in celebrating Where It All Began by participating in Volvo Cork Week 2020 and help restore its status as Europe’s largest fun regatta.

Published in Cork Harbour

A substantial fleet of classic yachts will be racing at Volvo Cork Week, with one entry having a history with the Royal Cork dating back over 100 years. David Aisher's 60ft-George Wanhill designed classic Thalia raced for the Royal Cork Yacht Club in 1890.

Irish Times Sailing Correspondent David O'Brien wrote recently how, in fact, Thalia was the first entry received for the Cork300 celebrations.

Th entry was received within minutes of the official entry system opening.

The biennial regatta week has extra significance next year as it forms a vital part of the Royal Cork’s historic ‘Cork300’ celebrations marking what is claimed to be the oldest yacht club in the world’s tricentenary.

As Afloat reported previously, Thalia will most likely be one of the oldest boats competing. Built in 1888, she was first raced from the Royal Cork Yacht Club, moving to the south coast of England in 1918.

After a more recent stint in the Caribbean, she was bought by David Aisher in 2010 and returns to Crosshaven for an important homecoming.

Published in Cork Week
Tagged under

Online entry has opened for the 2020 IRC European Championship which will take place in Cork Harbour, Ireland during Volvo Cork Week as part of the unique celebration of the 300th anniversary of the Royal Cork Yacht Club.

The 2020 IRC European Championship will be held over five days of racing from Monday 13th July to Friday 17th July during the biennial Volvo Cork Week regatta. The championship is expected to attract a record fleet of highly competitive IRC rated boats vying for the overall win and class honours.

Last month, the Royal Cork Yacht Club, the oldest yacht club in the world, launched its online entry system for the prestigious Volvo Cork Week 2020 regatta which will see hundreds of boats and thousands of yachtsmen and women from around the globe compete on the waters around Cork Harbour from July 13th – 17th.

On the 8th July, prior to Volvo Cork Week and the IRC European Championship, the Morgan Cup Race will start from Cowes, bound for Cork. Organised by the Royal Ocean Race Club since 1958, this will be the first time that the course has been set across the Celtic Sea to Cork. The 324nm race is expected to attract a substantial fleet. A new trophy for Line Honours has been donated by His Royal Highness, Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales.

Early entries for Volvo Cork Week show the amazing diversity of boats that will be celebrating the Royal Cork Yacht Club’s unique and historic celebration for the tricentennial. One of the most advanced racing yachts ever built will be in action as Irving Laidlaw returns to Volvo Cork Week with his Botin 56 Highland Fling 16. Niall & Olivia Dowling's Ker40+ Arabella is the first entry from the FAST40+ Class with half a dozen carbon flyers expected to be racing. David Collins IRC52 Tala will also be challenging in a red hot big boat fleet.

"Niall & Olivia Dowling's Ker40+ Arabella is the first entry from the FAST40+ Class"

A substantial fleet of classic yachts will be racing at Volvo Cork Week, the first entry has a history with the Royal Cork dating back over 100 years. David Aisher's 60ft George Wanhill designed classic Thalia raced for the Royal Cork Yacht Club in 1890. The 1720 Sportsboat Class is expected to have the largest fleet for many a year. The first entry was received from Conor Clarke who will be sailing under the burgee of the Royal Irish YC.

The Royal Cork Yacht Club has also received the first entries for the Beaufort Cup, open to sailing teams from all over the world representing their associated national services. The first Irish entry for the Beaufort Cup is Denis & Annamarie Murphy Grand Soleil 40 Nieulargo (RNLI Crosshaven). The first American entry is Ken Johnson's C&C 121 Grateful Red (US Army/ US Marines). The first British entry is the Royal Navy Sailing Association's J/109 Jolly Jack Tar, skippered by Philip Warwick.

Head of Sevenstar Racing Yacht Logistics, Wouter Verbaak has confirmed that Sevenstar Yacht Transport has partnered with Cork 300 and included special arrangements for yachts requiring shipping to Volvo Cork Week. “Cork has been made a special part of our USA, Med and Caribbean shipping logistics. Planned loading days from Southampton, UK to Cork, Ireland are between 16-30 June, 2020 with return loading days 20-27 July, 2020 in time for Cowes Week. We have FAST40+ yachts and classic yachts already in our plan, with space for more yachts wishing to compete at Volvo Cork Week,” confirmed Verbaak.

Published in Cork Harbour
Tagged under

The Royal Cork Yacht Club, the oldest yacht club in the world, today launched its online entry system for the prestigious Volvo Cork Week 2020 regatta which will see hundreds of boats and thousands of yachtsmen and women from around the globe compete on the waters around Cork Harbour from July 13th – 17th.

The world-renowned biennial regatta, first held in 1978, is expected to attract a bumper fleet of entries and will this year incorporate the Irish Cruiser Racing Association National Championships, 1720 European Championships, the Beaufort Cup, a Classic Yacht regatta and the southern championships for the International Dragon Class.

All qualifying boats entered in Volvo Cork Week 2020 will automatically be entered into the ICRA National Championships, the pinnacle of the Irish inshore cruiser racing calendar which will see the Irish National Champion declared.

Volvo Cork Week has historically been regarded as a ‘must-do’ regatta on the international sailing calendar due to its unparalleled reputation for exhilarating competitive racing over a variety of race courses in fair sailing waters and its incredible line-up of post-racing off the water entertainment and social activity.

mariette corkMariette will attend Cork300 celebrations this July Photo: Bob Bateman

This year’s Volvo Cork Week has extra special significance as it forms a key part of the Royal Cork Yacht Club’s historic ‘Cork300’ celebrations marking what is the oldest yacht club in the world’s tricentenary.

Volvo Cork Week Director of Racing, Rosscoe Deasy said: "I look forward to welcoming sailors from around the world to Cork Harbour in 2020 in celebration of the Royal Cork Yacht Club's tri-centennial year. We have a packed schedule and the season's centrepiece will be the renowned Volvo Cork Week in July. Notably, the 2020 regatta will also include championship events such as the IRC Europeans, the ICRA Nationals, the 1720 Europeans and the Beaufort Cup.

1720 racing cork week1720 Euoprean racing will be staged as part of Cork Week Photo: Bob Bateman

“Since 1978, every Cork Week has delivered a unique mix of top-notch competition afloat & top-class entertainment ashore, and next year will be no different. In fact, judging by the interest received and the stories of glory days already being retold, Volvo Cork Week 2020 will set a new standard on both counts. This event has been 300 years in the making, no sailor should miss it.”

Richard Colwell, Commodore of the Irish Cruising Racing Association said, “The ICRA is delighted to be partnering with the Royal Cork Yacht Club to hold the Irish Cruiser Racing National Championships as an integral part of Volvo Cork Week 2020. We encourage all of the cruiser racing fraternity in Ireland to travel and take part in what promises to be an exciting and competitive event, as part of Royal Cork’s broader Tricentenary celebrations. With visitors from countries all over Europe, it is important that Irish Cruiser Racing shows the strength that we have across all classes from White Sails to Cruiser 0 at the National Championships and so contribute to the competitive racing expected.”

A bumper fleet of more than 50 yachts from Ireland, UK, Netherlands, Spain and elsewhere around Europe is expected to compete in the 1720 Sports Boat European Championships as part of Volvo Cork Week 2020. The race committee is particularly pleased to host this European Championship event due in part to the fact that the original idea for the 1720 was conceived by a group of committed racing members of the Royal Cork Yacht Club. This distinctive class of boat also took its name from the year in which the club was founded.

Beaufort Cup racing for Military and rescue teams as part of Cork Week 300 celebrations Photo: Bob BatemanBeaufort Cup racing for Military and rescue teams as part of Cork Week 300 celebrations Photo: Bob Bateman

The third edition of the Beaufort Cup, the prestigious international inter-services sailing regatta, will also be hosted by the Royal Cork Yacht Club with the support of the Irish Defence Forces, during Volvo Cork Week. A specially commissioned perpetual trophy in honour of Sir Francis Beaufort, creator of the Beaufort Scale, will be presented to the overall winner of the regatta which will entail a mix of challenging offshore and tactical inshore racing, including an overnight race around the iconic Fastnet Rock and back to Cork. International teams from their associated national emergency services are invited to compete in this prestigious competition, with the proviso that 50% of each team must be active in the service they represent.
Volvo Cork Week will also host a dedicated Classic Yacht Regatta for the first time in 2020. Classic Yachts from around the globe will sail to Cork to celebrate ‘Where It All Began’ and partake in three days of racing in and outside Cork Harbour. This event will also provide a fantastic viewing spectacle for shoreline onlookers.

Ross DeasyRoss Deasy, Cork Week Regatta Organiser

In addition to this, the International Dragon Class will return to Volvo Cork Week in 2020 following their very successful outing in 2018, to hold their Southern Championships in Cork.
Royal Cork Yacht Club is also delighted to host the recently announced 2020 IRC European Championships, organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC), during Volvo Cork Week 2020. The Notice of Race and online entry for this much anticipated standalone event offering a varied race programme, with a mixed range of courses set in and around Cork Harbour, is expected to be available shortly.

As always, the atmosphere in Crosshaven, home of the Royal Cork Yacht Club, will be second to none both during and ahead of Volvo Cork Week 2020, with a series of national and international races to Cork taking place in the run up to the five-day regatta.

These include the highly prestigious Morgan Cup race - organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club since 1958 - which will cross the Celtic Sea to Cork for the first time ever with the support of the Royal Yacht Squadron and the Royal Cork Yacht Club. This 324nm race will carry an attractive points-weighting for the 2020 RORC Season Points Championship and is expected to attract a substantial fleet. The line honours winner for this race will be the first recipient of a specially commissioned perpetual trophy graciously donated to the Royal Cork Yacht Club by His Royal Highness, the Prince of Wales, to honour the club’s tricentenary and the close relationship between the United Kingdom, Ireland and its sailing communities.

morehead monaco farnon6Vice-Admiral of the Royal Cork Yacht Club and Cork300 Chairman, Colin Morehead (left) with His Serene Highness Albert II, Sovereign Prince of Monaco (centre) and Royal Cork Admiral Pat Farnan

Meanwhile, the historic Kingstown to Queenstown feeder race from Dun Laoghaire to Cobh will take place on July 9th, enhancing the build-up to Volvo Cork Week 2020 with a re-enactment of what is acknowledged as the first-ever offshore race to take place in the British Isles, in 1860.

A competitive fleet will also set sail on an 800nm race from Heligoland, Germany, to Cork, Ireland, on July 4th competing for the Robbe and Berking German Offshore Trophy, arriving ahead in Ireland of the historic Volvo Cork Week 2020.

Vice-Admiral of the Royal Cork Yacht Club and Cork300 Chairman, Colin Morehead, said: “The biennial Cork Week regatta has seen many friendships and memories created since it was first held in 1978. I would encourage everyone to return to Cork Harbour next year and join us in celebrating Where It All Began by participating in Volvo Cork Week 2020 and help restore its status as Europe’s largest fun regatta.

Online entry to Volvo Cork Week 2020 opens here from 10:00hrs Thursday 28th November.

Published in Cork Harbour

The 2020 IRC European Championship will be held at Cork Week as part of the unique celebration of the 300th anniversary of the Royal Cork Yacht Club.

As Afloat previously back as 2016, the 5th edition of the IRC European Championship will take place in Cork Harbour over five days of racing from Monday 13th July to Friday 17th July 2020. The championship is expected to attract a record fleet of highly competitive IRC rated boats vying for the overall win and class honours.

On Wednesday 8th July, prior to the IRC European Championship, the Morgan Cup Race will start from Cowes, bound for Cork. Organised by the Royal Ocean Race Club (RORC) since 1958, this will be the first time that the course has been set across the Celtic Sea to Cork. The 324nm race is expected to attract a substantial fleet and will be a weighted race within the world's largest offshore racing programme, the RORC Season's Points Championship.

"With a large majority of Irish boats already holding IRC Endorsed certificates there is the prospect of many strong Irish entries"

"The Irish IRC fleet are highly competitive and with a large majority of Irish boats already holding IRC Endorsed certificates there is the prospect of many strong Irish entries," commented Director of Rating for IRC, Dr Jason Smithwick. "With this diverse range of boat types racing under the IRC rating system we have been working closely with the Royal Cork Yacht Club to create an exciting and varied race programme with a mixed range of courses. This balance of course types will allow all boats to have a chance and create a fair and interesting event for the competitors. The IRC rating offices have also been working with the organisers to have a thorough programme of equipment inspection to ensure good equipment control before and during the event," continues Smithwick.

Corinthian teams racing small and medium size boats have enjoyed tremendous success in the IRC European Championship. In 2016 the inaugural championship was hosted by the Royal Cork Yacht and was won overall by Royal Cork's Paul Gibbons racing Quarter Tonner Anchor Challenge. For the last three championships French teams have won overall. The 2020 IRC European Championship will feature high performance boats, including a number of FAST40+ teams expected to be racing under IRC. Prizes are also awarded to the best Corinthian team, as well as individual IRC Classes.

Overall winners of the IRC European Championship

  • 2016 Paul Gibbons' Quarter Tonner Anchor Challenge (Cork, Ireland)
  • 2017 Guy Claeys' JPK 10.10 Expresso 2 (Marseille, France)
  • 2018 Didier le Moal's J/112E J-Lance (Cowes, UK).
  • 2019 Yves Ginoux's Farr 36 Absolutely II (San Remo, Italy)

For the 2020 IRC European Championship, competitors will enjoy wide-ranging and competitive racing afloat, as well as the Royal Cork's unique and historic celebration of their tricentennial.

"We're delighted to welcome the IRC European Championships back in 2020 where the fleet will enjoy a varied programme of races set in and around Cork Harbour," commented Cork Week Director of Racing, Rosscoe Deasy. "Shorter racecourses will be specially laid outside of Roches Point, a wonderful sailing area with open sea conditions and stable winds, while the famous 'Harbour Race' will bring additional navigational and tactical challenges. A 10-14 hour 'Coastal Race' is planned along the treacherously beautiful Irish headlands, providing a demanding test of crew focus and endurance. Admittedly the real test will be found ashore in Crosshaven where only the stoutest of hearts will be able to resist the siren call of the legendary Cork Week craic. It's going to be a great event!"

Published in Cork Harbour
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Irish Olympic helmsman Mark Mansfield picks his big (and smaller) events coming up for the Irish cruiser classes in 2020

The 2019 season is only just coming towards its end and already owners and crew are looking ahead at what is in store next year. There are still some good events to finish this season, and among them, the Autumn Leagues in Howth and Royal Cork, The final ISORA race, with the spoils still not decided, the J109 Nationals, the final summer series DBSC races and of course the very popular DBSC Turkey Shoot series.

2019 was very much a front-loaded year with Scottish Series, ICRA Nationals, Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race, Sovereigns Cup and Dun Laoghaire Regatta all happening within a seven-week period, and 2020 is not looking a whole lot different.

Below you will see the dates of the bigger events for 2020.

Without a doubt the two standout big boat events next year will be the Round Ireland Race in June and in July, Royal Cork Yacht Club host their special Cork Week, on the Munster club's 300th year anniversary. More on this later.

2020 'Big Boat' events

  • Scottish Series, Tarbert - May 22nd to May 25th (Friday to Monday)
  • Wave Regatta, Howth Yacht Club - May 29th to May 31st (Friday to Sunday)
  • Round Ireland Race, Wicklow SC - Starts June 20th (Saturday)
  • RORC Morgan Cup - Cowes to Cork - Starts July 8th (Wednesday)
  • Cork Week, Royal Cork Yacht Club (300 Year Celebration) - July 13th to July 18th (Monday to Saturday)
  • Calves Week - Schul August 4th to August 7th - (Tuesday to Friday)

Other events that are building numbers are Bangor Week, commencing 25th of June and WIORA week (date not published yet). The very popular ISORA offshore series runs throughout the year and these dates are also eagerly awaited.

Here are some details of each of the larger events:

Scottish Series

Always a very happy hunting ground for Irish boats wishing to sharpen themselves up for the new season. Numbers generally have been dropping for the Scottish Series except for the very popular RC35 class where Irish Boats took all podium places this year. Class 2 in 2020 might also show some increases with the biennial Classic Half-Ton Cup in Cowes bringing the competitive Half Tonners out to play early. This year there were two half tonners—expect more in 2020. Great racing and great pub craic around the beer tent and local pubs.

RC35 ScotlandIrish Boats at 2019 Scottish series RC 35 class Photo: Marc Turner

Wave Regatta

Only a new event in 2018 and is based around the Howth Yacht Club traditional June Bank Holiday Lambay Race. Wave Regatta is held every two years and if 2018 is anything to go by, it will be very well attended in 2020. It comes just a few days after the end of Scottish Series. A variety of courses over the three days, including the very popular round Lambay race. Well organised with great onshore facilities.

Signal 8 WaveJamie Mc William's Ker 40, Signal 8 at Howth's Wave Regatta 2018 Photo: Afloat

Round Ireland Race

The big one. 704 miles from Wicklow to Wicklow, clockwise around Ireland and its islands, turning corners all the way around. It goes from strength to strength. There is a rumour of a very large, very well known Maxi looking at taking on the challenge and the record in 2020. If you only plan to do one full-length offshore race, this is the one to do. I have done five Fastnet Races and I would always pick a Round Ireland over a Fastnet.

For those boats who have competed in the last two events, there is the added bonus of the chance to win a Volvo car for the best Boat over the 2016, 2018 and 2020 races. I’m sure we will be advised of the current pecking order very soon on this.

Niall Dowling Niall Dowling's Royal Irish Yacht club, Ker 43, Baraka GP, the overall winner of the Round Ireland 2018 Photo: Afloat

RORC's Morgan Cup

Rarely do Flagship RORC races end in Ireland, but on the 300th year anniversary of the founding of the Royal Cork Yacht Club, the RORC have graciously organised for one of their big races to finish in Cork, as a way of getting UK boats over for the Cork Week 300 regatta.

Approx 90 boats competed in the 2019 Morgan Cup edition this year, won overall by a J109. I suspect you may see some offshore orientated Irish boats decide to include this race in their calendar next year, which also serves as a way to get the boat to Cork in time for the Cork Week 300 Series.

Cork Week 300

From the Height of Cork Week in 2000 when boats competing topped 700, it has fallen somewhat. However, 2020, the 300th Anniversary of the club's founding, is all set to be special and interest from all corners of the world is evident with housing around Crosshaven and Carrigaline already starting to be booked up.

A number of classes are planning to use the week as their European Championships. The 1720 class, who had circa 75 boats at their 2000 event, are planning a big show in 2020 with already 10 boats confirmed from the UK with more likely to follow. A proper event Announcement is expected in September announcing some major classes and profile boats that will be competing.

The 2020 ICRA Nationals is being held as part of Cork week (three days only). Cork Week also incorporates a building fleet for the Beaufort Cup, which is a separate event within the week for associated national services (Army, Naval, Police, Firefighting, Coast Guard etc). This event incorporates an offshore race around the Fastnet and back.

Cork Week 2020 will be one not to miss. White Sail and coastal fleets will be included and the highlight is the all in Harbour race.

FekkesRory Fekkes from Carrigfergus SC, First Class 8—FN-GR8—Overall Winner of Cork week 2018 Photo: Bob Bateman

Calves Week

Numbers have held up very well for Calves Week. In 2019, there were 65 cruisers competing, with very competitive racing over the four days. A mix of windward-leeward courses, around the Islands and the Fastnet race keeps everyone interested. One race a day, with all the crews congregating after racing out in the streets between Newmans and Hackett's pubs. The Apres racing is as important as the racing with many sailors choosing to incorporate family holidays into the week. If you are doing Cork Week, and have not done Calves Week before, maybe you should consider leaving the boat in Cork and sliding down westwards a week or two later.

Rockabill JPK10.80Paul O'Higgins Rockabill VI from the Royal Irish—Winner of Calves week Class One in 2019 

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