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Surfers have hailed the recent ruling by An Bord Pleanála that Clare County Council must reapply for planning permission for its proposed €6 million redevelopment of Doolin Pier.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, local surfers and the Irish Surfing Association (ISA) had expressed dismay over the current development plans – approved by the council earlier this year – which they maintain would result in the destruction of the "world renowned" waves at Doolin Point and Crab Island.
The Irish Times reports that the council must now resubmit its planning application and prepare and environmental impact statement (EIS) due to the potential impact on tidal and wave patterns in the area, setting back plans for at least a year.
The proposed scheme already has support from the local business community and the Doolin Coast Guard unit, which argues that congestion on the pier in peak tourist periods may interfere with rescue efforts.
A spokesperson for the West Coast Surf Club said that both it and the ISA were available "to meet with the council to progress a mutually agreeable design for the pier".
The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Surfers have hailed the recent ruling by An Bord Pleanála that Clare County Council must reapply for planning permission for its proposed €6 million redevelopment of Doolin Pier.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, local surfers and the Irish Surfing Association (ISA) had expressed dismay over the current development plans – approved by the council earlier this year – which they maintain would result in the destruction of the "world renowned" waves at Doolin Point and Crab Island.

The Irish Times reports that the council must now resubmit its planning application and prepare and environmental impact statement (EIS) due to the potential impact on tidal and wave patterns in the area, setting back plans for at least a year.

The proposed scheme already has support from the local business community and the Doolin Coast Guard unit, which argues that congestion on the pier in peak tourist periods may interfere with rescue efforts.

A spokesperson for the West Coast Surf Club said that both it and the ISA were available "to meet with the council to progress a mutually agreeable design for the pier".

The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Surfing

There has been a call for the Irish Sailing Association (ISA) to take a lead in the big decisions that face youth sailors on what classes to sail to after they leave the ranks of the Optimist, Topper and Feva classes. The call comes from a leading junior organiser who does not wish to be named.

Although youth sailing is buoyant in Ireland it is known there is a 'high attrition rate' among teenagers. The lack of transfer in to senior dinghy classes has been a cause of concern for many clubs around the country.

The comments follow a recently published  article on Afloat.ie promoting the RS 200 dinghy as a progression boat for juniors.

"We need a class that will keep youths engaged. The 420 and 29er are great boats but require higher levels of boathandling, are much more competitive and tend to attract the top sailors"

"While the ISA's Olympic ambitions are great to see, it will fail the sport as a whole if it does not tackle this gaping need, the organiser says.

Read the RS 200 article by Ciara Byrne and the junior organiser's comments here

Published in Youth Sailing

The first of three regional finals of the ISA Yachtsman Euromarine Rib Challenge 2011 was held at Royal Cork Yacht Club last Saturday and it was an exciting start to the competition.

This year the competition was designed to encourage the younger members of our boating community to take to the water in a safe, responsible and most important an enjoyable way. On registration the competition sponsor Matt McGrory who was in attendance started off proceedings in a positive and fun manner by giving each entrant a competition T Shirt and taking a team Photo. This got all teams into a fun and competitive frame of mind.

RIB_Challenge1

Negotiating the tasks on the Royal Cork RIB course. Photo: Matt McRory

This Regional Final saw the ISA introduce a new format for the competition. Each Team had to carry out 10 tasks in a 3 hour period. These tasks consisted of "on the water maneuvering" of their craft and some off the water activities such as "rescue line throwing, Knots and various questions on all aspects of boating".

For the 3 hour period you could feel the tension as all teams went from task to task, when the time was up ISA RDO Ciaran Murphy had the task of adding up the scores. Throughout the day the high scores in each competition differed with no Team showing dominance. In the end it was a tight affaire and the Top Six were:

ribchallenge2

RIB Competitors at Royal Cork

1st Place – Foynes 1

2nd Place – Foynes 2

3rd Place – Royal Cork Yacht Club

4th Place – Glandore Harbour Yacht Club

5th Place - Atlantic Sailing Club

6th Place – Sailing Academy of Ireland

The top four teams now qualify through to the National Final where they have a chance of winning the ISA Yachtsman euromarine Rib Challenge 2011 top prize of a Club Rib.


Published in RIBs

A former Irish Sailing Chief has added his voice to the growing concerns of sailors in Dun Laoghaire to a recently published Harbour Masterplan that Waterfront Yacht Clubs say threatens sailing in the port, Ireland's biggest sailing centre.

The plans, along with the loss of the winter ferry service from the port were featured on RTE News this week.

The Harbour company, who published the designs last month, say the masterplan can create 'a thousand jobs' but a former Irish Sailing Association (ISA) President, Roger Bannon has blasted both the plan and a supporting promotional video (below) as 'grandiose nonsense'.

"The Masterplan will position Dun Laoghaire Harbour as a marine, leisure and tourism destination of international calibre", says Gerry Dunne, Chief Executive Officer, Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company.

"We need to spend an average of €5m a year on maintaining and developing the Harbour infrastructure. The Masterplan will involve investment of more than €230m, over the next 10-15 years and will result in 1000 sustainable jobs in areas such as tourism, marine service companies, select retail, and food and beverage." says the CEO.

But Bannon, a Dun Laoghaire sailing champion, says a plan is needed but the focus instead should be on something a lot more realistic.

"Sure we want a development plan for Dun laoghaire and its Harbour but let's look at something realistic and practical over a 10 year period which we know will work and stay away from this impossible grandiose nonsense.

Mr Leo Varadkar, T.D., Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport visited the Harbour Board in June to view the Masterplan model and the plans.

During the visit the Minister said he was aware of the very keen local interest in the future development of the harbour. The yacht clubs, who occupy 50% of the harbour waterfront, say the future of the harbour is in marine lesiure.

Bannon's full comments are below:

"What a load of aspirational twaddle. High on sweeping statements and low on specifics. Sounds more like a plan to occupy people in highly paid jobs while nothing will ever happen.

Sure we want a development plan for Dun laoghaire and its Harbour but let's look at something realistic and practical over a 10 year period which we know will work and stay away from this impossible grandiose nonsense.

There are plenty of examples of cost effective developments in many cities around the world, such as Vancouver and Boston, where marine facilities and other resources similar to Dun laogahire have been brilliantly exploited for the general benefit of everyone.

Heaven forbid that our public servants might learn something from others facing the same dilemma elsewhere in the world. Should someone tell the Harbour Board that counting on residential development to generate funding may not work?

Finally, I do not understand how the Harbour Board can take it upon itself to come up with such a plan without integration with local planning for the whole of Dun Laoghaire. Was the video made by DreamWorks?"

Published in Dublin Bay
Plans are afoot to bring powerboat racing's Harmsworth Trophy event to Cork in 2014 - over 100 years since Cork Harbour hosted the first ever edition of the race.
Regarded as the powerboat version of yachting's America's Cup, the first Harmsworth Trophy was won in July 1903 by Napier, which was allegedly piloted by women's world land speed record holder Dorothy Lewitt.
According to the Tom MacSweeney in the Evening Echo, a consortium is hard at work to bring the race back to its birthplace - coinciding with the Round Ireland Powerboat Race, which will also be held out of Cork in 2014.
Denis Dillon of the Irish Sailing Association commented: "There is a group of Cork enthusiasts interested and is trying to put a consortium together that would also bring back one of the original 1903 boats still is existance which is in the USA.
"It came first in its class and second overall in the race in 1903 and they hope to bring it back for the 2014 race."

Plans are afoot to bring powerboat racing's Harmsworth Trophy event to Cork in 2014 - over 100 years since Cork Harbour hosted the first ever edition of the race. SCROLL DOWN FOR ARCHIVE Footage.

Regarded as the powerboat version of yachting's America's Cup, the first Harmsworth Trophy was won in July 1903 by Napier, which was allegedly piloted by women's world land speed record holder Dorothy Lewitt.

According to the Tom MacSweeney column in the Evening Echo, a consortium is hard at work to bring the race back to its birthplace - coinciding with the Round Ireland Powerboat Race, which will also be held out of Cork in 2014.

Denis Dillon of the Irish Sailing Association commented: "There is a group of Cork enthusiasts interested and is trying to put a consortium together that would also bring back one of the original 1903 boats still is existance which is in the USA.

"It came first in its class and second overall in the race in 1903 and they hope to bring it back for the 2014 race."

Published in Powerboat Racing

The Irish Sailing Association (ISA) has hit back at last week's Newstalk radio interview where questions over the state funding of Irish Olympic Sailing was raised.

In the interview with a number of Olympic hopefuls, including Dun Laoghaire sailor Annalise Murphy, presenter Ivan Yates asked if the tax payer was 'getting value for money' by supporting minority sports such as sailing.

More strident than other sports, Olymic sailing manager James O'Callaghan  has said sailing is determined to stand on the podium in the 2012 Olympics.  The Association is targetting three boats for the Olympic regatta at Weymouth next July.

In a lengthy written response sent to the station the sailing body has said it was wrong for the interviewer to ' target the hardworking athletes' and concludes that  'it was a shame Yates decided to take the negative line with these young people".

The Newstalk questions come as Sports Council funding is expected to be cut and at an important stage in the planning for the London 2012 regatta but it also comes at a time when questions are being asked internationally about the future of sailing at the Olympics

"If banks and commercial institutions had applied the same kind of rigorous criteria the athletes have to achieve before even seeing one red cent, it is likely that we would have a much stronger nation", the ISA statement says.

Irish sailors received €186,000 in state funding in 2010 through the Irish Sports Council's high performance programme. This season – the best for many years – Ireland has scored some top Olympic class results, an indication, say the ISA, that the hard work is paying off.

In the course of the interview 21-year old Murphy told Yates she will need to supplement her state grant of €40,000 grant with donations and support from her family.

In further probing about how campaigns are funded Yates maintained that a minorty sport such as Olympic sailing would only be 'a footnote on the Nine O'Clock news' during next year's Olympics and questioned the merit of funding the sport through the public purse.

It's not the first time the radio station has raised the issue of the relevance of sailing. On May 23rd on the station's morning talk show the presenter asked  Olympic Council (OCI) of Ireland Chief Pat Hickey, “Does anyone care, does it matter if Ireland wins a sailing medal in the Olympics … it’s a minority sport....?"

The ISA response to the latest interview (published on its Olympic facebook page) is in full below:

"It is rare that we respond to public comment but the tone of Ivan Yates interview yesterday on Newstalk with Annalise and a number of other athletes needs a response. Here is what we emailed Newstalk:

Thanks to George for bringing in a bit of balance to the completely lopsided interview that Ivan Yates conducted yesterday morning. (George Hook took Ivan to task later the same day on his show The Right Hook)

To target the hardworking athletes for wasting taxpayers money was completely unfair and was just trying to appeal to the high level of frustration out there with the state the country is in at the moment. While this frustration is justified to make the athletes the target is not.

They are not the ones wasting tax payers money. In the overall scheme of things the funding the sports council gets each year from government is a drop in the ocean (approx. 50-60million) in terms of the overall budget spend and it is still one of the smallest developed country allocations to sport.

If banks and commercial institutions had applied the same kind of rigorous criteria the athletes have to achieve before even seeing one red cent, it is likely that we would have a much stronger nation. Every sport has to apply annually for the Irish Sports Council funding and the application is assessed on objective criteria primarily based around performance targets. If you hit targets you get support, simple as that.

No Olympic athlete I know is "making" money they are just about getting enough in to cover their costs of campaigning. The athletes all approach their sport in a wholly professional manner most are doing it full-time but every piece of grant aid or support they receive goes into their campaign, they are not building up property portfolios or taking out mortgages.

What they are doing is representing Ireland on the international stage and the athletes success reflects well on the nation. Ireland competing on the international stage also strengthens our case for hosting international events which not only showcase Ireland as a destination but also generates significant income for the local economy. The Volvo Ocean race brought in €55m in economic benefit to the West of Ireland when Galway hosted one of the stopovers.

If we all subscribed to Ivan's narrow view of the world we would all end up being couch potatoes watching sport on TV taking place in foreign countries and costing the tax payer a hell of a lot more money trying to solve the problems a sedentary lifestyle would bring to bear on the health system.

It is a shame Yates decided to take the negative line with these young people who inspire 100's of kids within their own sports and potentially will have an even wider impact if successful at the Olympic games. We should be cheering on these athletes and getting behind them not trying to pull the rug from underneath them while attempting to make amends for the errors of others" - Friday, 19 August 2011.

More related Olympic sailing articles:

Olympic Sailing - Are Two Medals a Realistic Expectation?

 

Published in Olympics 2012
Tagged under

In La Rochelle, France Ross Vaughan lies 82nd in a fleet of 132 at the European Laser Radial Mens Championships. Over 300 Lasers started their World Championships off La Rochelle yesterday in sunshine, a 20-25 kn breeze and a big swell.

Vaughan is a former member of Ireland's ISA Academy Squad who are all competing at the youth radial championships that start tomorrow at the same venue.

The Squad will also be joined by Finn Lynch and Fionn Lyden who the ISA say are on 'a six month probation period for entry into the Academy'. The 147 Standard-Youth sailor fleet is split in three groups.

After the first days racing in the Mens competition Sam Meech NZL is leading followed by Martin Evans GBR (5/1) and Francebesco Marrai ITA (2/5).  Follow here.

Chris Penny also competed in the Standard Youth World and European Championships and finished 44th in the Europeans and 64th in the Worlds.

Published in Youth Sailing
Tagged under

Royal Cork Yacht Club sailors have lifted two national titles at the 2011 Mitsubishi National Youth Sailing Championships this afternoon in a series cut short today by gale force winds on Dublin Bay. SCROLL DOWN FOR THIS AFTERNOON'S PRIZEGIVING PHOTOS.

Local knowledge offered no advantage as Dun Laoghaire co-hosts the Royal St. George YC, the National Yacht Club and the Royal Irish YC won none of the five national titles inspite of strong turnouts fielded by each of the waterfront clubs.

With winds gusting up to 25-30 knots and easterly winds causing a big swell, sailing for the final day of the ISA Mitsubishi National Championships was cancelled leaving the 300 sailors ashore. However all classes had completed sufficient races to complete the series.

The event was an important test event for Dun Laoghaire organisers of the Youth Worlds which will be held in the same venue from 12 -21 July 2012.

In a show of strength from the regions the three other titles went to other east coast clubs at Howth, Ballyholme and Courtown.

Immediately after the prizegiving, (photos below) Olympic Team Manager James O'Callaghan named the Irish team for the 2011 ISAF Youth World Championships in Croatia in July based on the weekend results. Listen to the podcast with the team manager, talking about the stand out performances of the weekend,  the current strength of youth sailing in Ireland and the prospect of a top finish in Croatia.

Royal Cork YC achieved two national titles with Laser 4.7 event favourite Seafra Guilfoyle winning the title having previously dominated the Optimist fleet in previous years.

Brother and sister team Patrick & Chloe Crosbie also from Royal Cork won the 420 National title and Patrick was awarded the Training Grant for the most promising sailor at the event.

This event was the national trials for the Optimist class which was won by Tralee Bay sailor Sophie Browne who will travel to New Zealand in December to compete in the Optimist World Championships.

Irish optimist sailors are performing well internationally at the moment finishing fourth and fifth at the Braassemermeer Easter regatta. Other events during 2011 where there will be Irish representation include the European Championships in Portugal and the National Championships in Germany and the UK.

Top three results below. Click the links for full results class by class.

Laser Radial - full results here
National Champion: Philip Doran (Courtown Sailing Club)
2nd  Robbie Gilmore (Strangford Lough YC)
3rd Eoin Keller (Lough Derg YC)
1st Girl Sophie Murphy Quoile Yacht Club

Laser 4.7 - full results here
National Champion: Seafra Guilfoyle (Royal Cork YC)
2nd Darragh O'Sullivan (Kinsale YC)
3rd Finn Lynch (NYC/Blessington SC)
1st Girl: Sian Kneafsey (National YC)

420 - full results here
National Champions:  Patrick Crosbie & Chloe Crosbie (Royal Cork YC)
2nd Aodh Kennedy & Daniel Browne (Kinsale YC & Tralee Bay SC)
3rd Emma Geary & Niamh Connolly (Royal Cork YC & Baltimore SC)

Feva - full results here

National Champions: D Johnston & L Flynn Byrne (Howth YC)

2nd C Totterdell & S Craig (National YC/Royal St. George YC)

3rd  C Mollard & J Harris (Howth YC)

Topper - full results here
National Champion:  T Brow (Ballyholme YC)
2nd Laura Gilmore (Strangford Lough YC)
3rd  Andrew Penney (East Antrim BC)

Optimist (Championship fleet)
1st Ben Walsh (Skerries SC)
2nd Ross Quirke (National YC)
3rd Colin O'Sullivan (Malahide YC)

Optimist National Trials
Sophie Browne (Tralee Bay SC) won the trials and took the option of travelling to New Zealand in December 2011 to represent Ireland at the Optimist World Championships.

The following sailors were selected by the trial process to represent Ireland at the European Championship which will be held in Portugal in July 2011: Sean Donnelly, HYC, Peter McCann RCYC, Harry Whitaker RCYC, Eoin Lyden RCYC, Jil McGinley RCYC  Cliodhna Ni Shuilleabhain KYC and Megan Parker SSC

The team selected to travel to the German National Championships include Robert Dickson HYC , Daire Cournane KYC, Sean Waddilove Skerries SC,  Richard Hogan HYC, Adam Hyland RSGYC, Ronan Cournane KYC, Sean Gambier Ross KYC and Fergus Flood HYC, Aoife Hopkins and Alacoque Daly Tralee Bay SC.

In addition 10 sailors were chosen for the Irish under 12 squad who will compete in the Optimist UK National Championships.

All our youth sailing news aggregated here

Prizegiving photos by Gareth Craig below. For daily on the water action: Day one photos here. Day two photos here. Day three photos here.

Published in Youth Sailing
Local surfers have expressed their dismay over the decision by Clare County Council to approve the new pier development at Doolin Point.
The Irish Surfing Association (ISA) maintains that even the revised plan - accepted by the council's 32 members following previous objections - would result in the destruction of the renowned waves at Doolin Point and Crab Island.
"I am very disappointed with this decision," Neil Cooney of West Coast Surf Club told Surfer Today. "A great deal of work was put into the West Coast Surf Club and ISA submission but it seems that the issues raised were ignored and brushed over."
He added: "If this development is built as now proposed it would be a catastrophe."

Local surfers have expressed their dismay over the decision by Clare County Council to approve the new pier development at Doolin Point.

The Irish Surfing Association (ISA) maintains that even the revised plan - accepted by the council's 32 members following previous objections - would result in the destruction of the renowned waves at Doolin Point and Crab Island.

"I am very disappointed with this decision," Neil Cooney of West Coast Surf Club told Surfer Today. "A great deal of work was put into the West Coast Surf Club and ISA submission but it seems that the issues raised were ignored and brushed over."

He added: "If this development is built as now proposed it would be a catastrophe."

Published in Surfing
The controversial €6 million deveopment of Doolin Point has been backed unanimously by Clare councillors.
Clare county manager Tom Coughlan had recommended giving approval for the revised plan, which was submitted after surfers expressed concerns over the impact of the original scheme on waves in the area.
The scheme has already received support from the Doolin Coast Guard Unit and local tourism and business groups.
But according to The Irish Times, the Irish Surfing Association (ISA) maintains that even the amended plans – which move the new pier 25m further away from the surf – would destroy the "world renowned" Crab Island and Doolin Point waves.
The ISA and West Coast Surf Club have warned the council loss of the waves could cost up to €33 million per year in revenue generated by surf tourism in the area - a concern backed by Fáilte Ireland.
The Doolin Point pier project must be completed by the end of this year in order for the council to draw the €6 million in Government funding required.

The controversial €6 million deveopment of Doolin Point has been backed unanimously by Clare councillors.

Clare county manager Tom Coughlan had recommended giving approval for the revised plan, which was submitted after surfers expressed concerns over the impact of the original scheme on waves in the area.

The scheme has already received support from the Doolin Coast Guard Unit and local tourism and business groups.

But according to The Irish Times, the Irish Surfing Association (ISA) maintains that even the amended plans – which move the new pier 25m further away from the surf – would destroy the "world renowned" Crab Island and Doolin Point waves.

The ISA and West Coast Surf Club have warned the council that loss of the waves could cost up to €33 million per year in revenue generated by surf tourism in the area - a concern backed by Fáilte Ireland.

The Doolin Point pier project must be completed by the end of this year in order for the council to draw the €6 million in Government funding required.

Published in Coastal Notes
Page 14 of 17

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