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Displaying items by tag: Russia

Three shipments of grain from Ukraine departed from Odessa on Friday (5 August) with one bound for two ports in Ireland.

The bulk carrier Navi Star is bringing 33,000 metric tonnes of grain destined for use as animal feed to to Dublin Port and Foynes Port, with arrival expected in around two weeks, as reports.

Navi Star departed from Odessa on the Black Sea on Friday morning alongside the Rojen, carrying over 13,000 metric tonnes of grain to the UK, and the Polarnet with 12,000mt of grain bound for Turkey.

Along with the earlier shipment of 26,000mt of maize to Tripoli in Lebanon on the Razoni this past Monday, they mark the first successful movements arising from the recently negotiated deal between Russia and Ukraine that lifts the former’s blockade on the Black Sea.

Food prices worldwide have soared since Ukraine — which supplies much of the world’s grain — was prevented from exporting under the blockade that followed Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February. has more on the story HERE.

Published in Ports & Shipping
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The ban on Russian vessels entering Irish ports on the foot of sanctions from the European Union amid the continuing invasion of Ukraine is being extended to locks from the Friday (29 July).

An amended version of Marine Notice No 19 of 2022, attached below, outlines that all Irish ports (after 16 April) and locks (after 29 July) are directed to deny entry to any ship, yacht or recreational craft registered under the flag of Russia.

As previously reported on, exceptions may be made, pending approval by the relevant authorities, for the transport of fossil fuels; metals and chemicals; pharmaceutical, medical, agricultural and food products; and humanitarian purposes.

The ban is also waived in the case of a vessel in need of assistance seeking a place of refuge, of an emergency port call for reasons of maritime safety, or for saving life at sea.

Published in Irish Ports

Killybegs fishers have lashed out at a deal between the Faroe Islands and Moscow that they say creates a “loophole” for Russian trawlers to muscle in on the blue whiting fishery around Irish waters.

According to The Irish Times, the Killybegs Fishermen’s Organisation (KFO) has called on the Government and European Commission to impose sanctions on the North Atlantic island country over the “immoral” deal that poses “an existential threat to the catch of blue whiting in Irish waters”.

The organisation’s chief executive also accused the Faroes of “aiding and abetting” the Russian invasion of Ukraine by way of the deal, which allows its own vessels to fish for cod in Russian waters.

The Irish Times has much more on the story HERE.

Published in Fishing

Russian vessels will be denied entry into Irish ports after this Saturday 16 April on the foot of sanctions from the European Union amid the ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

As the latest Marine Notice from the Department of Transport outlines, all Irish ports are directed to deny entry to any ship, yacht or recreational craft registered under the flag of Russia.

The ban also applies to any such vessel that changed the registration or flag of the vessel from the Russian Federation to another state on or after 24 February this year.

Exceptions may be made, pending approval by the relevant authorities, for the transport of fossil fuels; metals and chemicals; pharmaceutical, medical, agricultural and food products; and humanitarian purposes.

The ban is also waived in the case of a vessel in need of assistance seeking a place of refuge, of an emergency port call for reasons of maritime safety, or for saving life at sea.

Further details can be found in Marine Notice No 19 of 2022, attached below.

Published in Irish Ports

A superyacht owned by a Russian billionaire businessman has been seized by Italian police in the same week as he was targeted by EU sanctions in the wake of the war in Ukraine.

As the Guardian reports, mining magnate Alexei Mordashov’s 65m yacht Lady M was impounded in the port of Imperia, a city on Italy’s Ligurian Sea coast.

Two other Russian oligarchs also had yachts seized in Imperia and La Ciotat, between Nice and Toulon in France, as the European Union moved to freeze assets in reaction to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine which began in 24 February.

Lady M — which visited Belfast and Cumbria in 2017 — was delivered in 2013 by US yacht builder Palmer Johnson and is valued by Forbes magazine at some $27 million.

The Guardian has more on the story HERE.

Published in Superyachts
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Spain’s Marca is reporting that a Ukrainian sailor was arrested over the weekend for attempting to sink the superyacht owned by his Russian employer.

The €7 million Lady Anastasia — which was partially sunk at Port Adriano in Mallorca — is the property of Alexander Mijeev, the head of a Russian state-owned military weapons company.

It’s emerged that a Ukrainian national arrested at the scene has worked on the luxury yacht for a decade.

And he claims he was spurred into action by news reports of a Russian missile strike on a block of flats in Kyiv amid the ongoing crisis in the country.

He reportedly told offers of the Civil Guard upon his arrest: “The owner of this boat is a criminal who makes a living selling weapons and now they kill Ukrainians."

Marca has more on the story HERE.

Published in Superyachts

The crew of Jarlath Cunnane’s expedition yacht Northabout which sailed expeditions to the Northwest and Northeast Passages is to protest outside the Russian Embassy in Dublin on Wednesday at 2 pm for one hour to highlight the plight of a jailed Russian researcher, historian and human rights activist, Yuri Dmitriev, who met them in the city of Petrozavodsk, on the shores of Lake Onega. He has been jailed by the Russian Government because his research work is ensuring that the history of Soviet terror is known and remembered, according to Dr Michael Brogan, a leading Galway Hooker owner and sailor and who was on the Northabout crew.

The Northabout crew, under the banner “Grandfathers for Human Rights and friends of Russian Political prisoner Yuri Dmitriev,” will hold the silent vigil, he told Afloat, “because he has paid a high price for highlighting Stalin’s reign of terror, which Mr Putin wants to whitewash from Russian history.”

“In 2012, Irish Sailing Vessel, Northabout sailed to Russia from Westport to navigate the White Sea/ Baltic Canal.Constructed largely on Stalin’s instigation, the Canal is 227 kilometres long and includes nineteen locks and fifteen dams; all built in twenty months (November 1931 - July 1933). An endless supply of slave labour was available and the number of workers who died will never be known.

“Yuri Dmitriev, Gulag researcher, historian and human rights activist spent thirty years ensuring that the history of Soviet terror is known and remembered. He has dedicated most of his life to documenting the burial sites (with dates, names and each victim’s story), which included the mass graves at Sandarmokh, Krasny Bor and the Solovetsky Islands. He has also published books of remembrance with details of thousands of victims. (From the records of one field hospital alone, he documented the deaths of 10,000 prisoners working on the eighth lock in the winter of 1932.)

“The Crew of Northabout met up with Yuri Dmitriev in the city of Petrozavodsk, on the shores of Lake Onega. He took us to Sandarmokh forest and other burial sites around the area, where we met relatives of some of the victims. Dmitriev is trying to ensure that Russia remembers its past, and the importance of truth to prevent new atrocities.

He has paid a high price for highlighting Stalin’s reign of terror, which Mr. Putin wants to whitewash from Russian history. Yuri was arrested on trumped-up charges in 2016 and was sentenced firstly to three and a half years which - on appeal - was increased to thirteen years. This last sentence was appealed by the prosecutor and on Monday, December 27th, his sentence was further increased to fifteen years. Twenty-four hours after Dmitriev's verdict, Russia's Supreme Court shut down Memorial; the country's most prominent human rights group, which chronicled Stalin-era purges. This same Court has refused to review Dmitriev's case which, at close to 66 years of age amounts almost to a death sentence.

“The present administration is once again setting out to erase the memory of the victims as if they never existed, the future looks grim for anyone who might speak up for the truth of Russia's dark history.”

The crew of Northabout was: Jarlath Cunnane, Michael Brogan, Paddy Barry, Gary Finnegan, Colm Brogan, Kevin Cronin.

Published in Cruising
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Ireland has the legal right to say “no” to Russia or any other state seeking to conduct military exercises within an exclusive economic zone, an international maritime law expert has said.

As The Times Ireland edition reports, Prof Clive Symmons, retired lecturer in maritime law at Trinity College Dublin (TCD), says the Government was “incorrect” in stating last month that Russia was legally within its rights to conduct military exercises within Ireland’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

On January 24th, Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney said that while the military exercises were “not welcome”, Ireland did not have the powers to prevent the exercises from happening.

Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon CoveneyMinister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney

Last Saturday, Mr Coveney confirmed that Russian naval exercises due to take place later this week would be relocated outside of Ireland’s EEZ after he had written to the Russian defence minister Sergey Shoigu requesting a “reconsideration”.

Russian ambassador to Ireland Yuriy Filatov confirmed the relocation as a “gesture of goodwill”, following requests from the Irish government and the Irish South and West Fish Producers Organisation.

Russian ambassador to Ireland Yuriy FilatovRussian ambassador to Ireland Yuriy Filatov

The ambassador has accepted an invitation to appear before the Oireachtas foreign affairs committee today.

Prof Symmons said that military use of the sea was not included in the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), and remained a “grey area” that allowed for varied interpretations.

He said that in practical terms, some states like the US claim such activity is still exercisable in another state's EEZ, even without its consent as an implied high seas freedom.

However, other states such as China claim it is forbidden in their EEZ, he said.

“For these reasons, I think Mr Coveney was mistaken in his seemingly ready acceptance of such activity being legal in the Irish EEZ,” Prof Symmons said.

Prof Symmons said that a foreign state has “no express right in UNCLOS to conduct any military activities (let alone naval exercises) in the EEZ of another state without its permission”, and such exercises are “not an implied high seas freedom in this context”.

However, a coastal state may also have no clear right under the same convention to “interfere with military/naval activities”, and may be obliged to permit high seas navigational freedoms in relation to military vessels transiting.

Prof Symmons explained that EEZ rights are defined under Articles 56 (2), 58 and 59 of the UN convention as being sovereign for “the purpose of exploring and exploiting, conserving and managing the natural resources, whether living or non-living".

He said that as the initial Russian notification to exercise 240 km off the Irish coast involved an important Irish EEZ fishing area, this gave Ireland the right to object.

The UN convention also refers to "unattributed rights", where a dispute arises over the rights of the EEZ state and others.

Read more in The Times here

Published in Fishing
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The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) says it supports the call for a moratorium on military exercises within Ireland’s Exclusive Economic Zone.

Both the Irish South and West Fish Producers’ Organisation (IS&WFPO) and the Irish Fish Processors and Exporters Association (IFPEA) have appealed for the Government to introduce a 10-year halt on any future manoeuvres within the area, according to The Skipper.

It follows Russia’s decision, as a “gesture of goodwill”, to relocate live-fire drills that had been planned for this week in international waters but within the Irish EEZ, some 240km off the Cork coast.

The outcome was hailed as a victory for diplomacy on the part of Ireland’s fishing industry, with the EU fisheries commissioner paying tribute at the weekend.

There had been fears of confrontation between Irish trawlers and Russian naval vessels in the Atlantic as long-standing fishing grounds on the continental shelf adjoin the area previously earmarked for the military exercises.

“I think the Russian have set a precedent now…that we need to bring in a 10-year moratorium to stop all military exercises in the Irish EEZ,” IFPEA chief executive Brendan Byrne told Highland Radio.

“We can’t bring in an outright ban [due to international law] but we have have the right…to bring in the moratorium based on the eco-sensitivity of the area, based on the biological importance of it to [the] sea fishery which is mackerel, in this case, or nephrops and the entire environmental argument, notwithstanding the displacement of fishing.”

The IWDG said it supports fishers’ right “to work without feeling threatened by military exercises” and that “additionally such a moratorium would also greatly reduce the threat these exercises pose to whales and dolphins”.

It added: “While on this occasion the Russian navy notified the State of their intentions, UK and NATO vessels regularly carry out naval exercises within the Irish EEZ.

“They have also been known to use active sonar within the Irish EEZ and such events have been linked to the mass mortality of deep-diving whale species in Irish waters, most recently in 2018 with an unusual mortality event of Cuvier’s beaked whales in Ireland and Scotland.

“Mass strandings and inshore sightings of northern bottlenose whales and Sowerby’s beaked whales, which occurred in 2020, may also have been linked to naval activity.”

In light of this, the IWDG is “proposing four additional Marine Protected Areas for deep-diving cetaceans along the slopes of the Rockall Canyon, Porcupine Seabight and Whittard Canyon System”.

The marine wildlife charity also expressed its fears that the Northeast Atlantic “has become a global hotspot” for beaked whale strandings, which appear to be increasing in both magnitude and frequency”.

It adds: “Given the vulnerability of beaked whales to underwater noise, supported by significant advances in our understanding of the impacts of military sonar on these animals, it appears ever more likely that military sonars used in or adjacent to important beaked whale habitats are a significant factor in these mortalities.”

Meanwhile, concerns remain among environmentalists for marine wildlife in the vicinity of wherever Russia moves its planned naval and air force drills.

Speaking to Claire Byrne on RTÉ Radio 1’s Today programme, Ken O’Sullivan, the documentary maker behind Ireland’s Deep Atlantic, said: “Exploding bombs in the ocean is never a good thing to do, for many reasons.”

RTÉ Radio 1 has the full interview HERE.

Published in Fishing
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The EU’s fisheries commissioner has paid tribute to Irish fishermen for their role in shifting the location of Russian military exercises outside the Irish exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

In a tweet, Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevičius said that “Irish fishermen got their diplomatic game on! “

“They managed to stop Russian military exercises that would undermine their activities and marine life,” he said.

“ Real custodians of the sea on duty! The world could use more of you!” the commissioner, who holds the environment, oceans and fisheries portfolio, tweeted.

He was responding to a report on Irish Central headlined “Irish fishermen defeat the Russian navy”.

The Russian ambassador to Ireland has credited both the Irish South and West Fish Producers’ Organisation (IS&WFPO) and the Irish government with its decision to relocate planned military exercises outside the Irish Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

In a statement on Saturday, Ambassador Yuriy Filatov said that the Russian Federation’s defence minister Sergey Shoigu has decided “as a gesture of goodwill” to relocate exercises on February 3rd to 8th to an area outside the Irish EEZ.

The military exercises had been planned to take place some 240 km off the Irish southwest coast, within the Irish EEZ.

This had led to serious concerns among fishermen about the impact on their economic activity, while environmental groups expressed fears about the impact on marine life, including cetaceans.

North American news network CNN has described the latest development as a victory for Irish fishermen.

“Russians blink after Irish fishermen’s vow to block Navy war games,” CNN said in a headline to the report by CNN correspondent Donie O’Sullivan, broadcast live from Castletownbere, Co Cork on Saturday.

IS&WFPO chief executive Patrick Murphy, who met the Russian ambassador to Ireland over the issue last week along with Irish Fish Processors’ and Exporters’ Association chief executive Brendan Byrne, has stated that Irish fishing vessels were not protesting, but were asserting their right to fish their quota on their traditional grounds.

The breakthrough on Saturday was confirmed by Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney,m who said that he had written to his counterpart, the Russian Federation’s defence minister, this week, “to request a reconsideration of naval exercises off the Irish coast”.

“This evening I received a letter confirming the Russian exercises will be relocated outside of Ireland’s EEZ. I welcome this response,” Coveney tweeted.

"We don’t know where they plan to have military exercises, but it certainly won’t be in international waters that Ireland has responsibility for,” Mr Coveney told RTÉ News.

Ireland would try be a voice for compromise to help avoid a war between Russia and Ukraine describing any conflict as potentially being the largest land war in Europe since the second world war, he said.

Published in Naval Visits
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Irish Olympic Sailing Team

Ireland has a proud representation in sailing at the Olympics dating back to 1948. Today there is a modern governing structure surrounding the selection of sailors the Olympic Regatta

Irish Olympic Sailing FAQs

Ireland’s representation in sailing at the Olympics dates back to 1948, when a team consisting of Jimmy Mooney (Firefly), Alf Delany and Hugh Allen (Swallow) competed in that year’s Summer Games in London (sailing off Torquay). Except for the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City, Ireland has sent at least one sailor to every Summer Games since then.

  • 1948 – London (Torquay) — Firefly: Jimmy Mooney; Swallow: Alf Delany, Hugh Allen
  • 1952 – Helsinki — Finn: Alf Delany * 1956 – Melbourne — Finn: J Somers Payne
  • 1960 – Rome — Flying Dutchman: Johnny Hooper, Peter Gray; Dragon: Jimmy Mooney, David Ryder, Robin Benson; Finn: J Somers Payne
  • 1964 – Tokyo — Dragon: Eddie Kelliher, Harry Maguire, Rob Dalton; Finn: Johnny Hooper 
  • 1972 – Munich (Kiel) — Tempest: David Wilkins, Sean Whitaker; Dragon: Robin Hennessy, Harry Byrne, Owen Delany; Finn: Kevin McLaverty; Flying Dutchman: Harold Cudmore, Richard O’Shea
  • 1976 – Montreal (Kingston) — 470: Robert Dix, Peter Dix; Flying Dutchman: Barry O’Neill, Jamie Wilkinson; Tempest: David Wilkins, Derek Jago
  • 1980 – Moscow (Tallinn) — Flying Dutchman: David Wilkins, Jamie Wilkinson (Silver medalists) * 1984 – Los Angeles — Finn: Bill O’Hara
  • 1988 – Seoul (Pusan) — Finn: Bill O’Hara; Flying Dutchman: David Wilkins, Peter Kennedy; 470 (Women): Cathy MacAleavy, Aisling Byrne
  • 1992 – Barcelona — Europe: Denise Lyttle; Flying Dutchman: David Wilkins, Peter Kennedy; Star: Mark Mansfield, Tom McWilliam
  • 1996 – Atlanta (Savannah) — Laser: Mark Lyttle; Europe: Aisling Bowman (Byrne); Finn: John Driscoll; Star: Mark Mansfield, David Burrows; 470 (Women): Denise Lyttle, Louise Cole; Soling: Marshall King, Dan O’Grady, Garrett Connolly
  • 2000 – Sydney — Europe: Maria Coleman; Finn: David Burrows; Star: Mark Mansfield, David O'Brien
  • 2004 – Athens — Europe: Maria Coleman; Finn: David Burrows; Star: Mark Mansfield, Killian Collins; 49er: Tom Fitzpatrick, Fraser Brown; 470: Gerald Owens, Ross Killian; Laser: Rory Fitzpatrick
  • 2008 – Beijing (Qingdao) — Star: Peter O’Leary, Stephen Milne; Finn: Tim Goodbody; Laser Radial: Ciara Peelo; 470: Gerald Owens, Phil Lawton
  • 2012 – London (Weymouth) — Star: Peter O’Leary, David Burrows; 49er: Ryan Seaton, Matt McGovern; Laser Radial: Annalise Murphy; Laser: James Espey; 470: Gerald Owens, Scott Flanigan
  • 2016 – Rio — Laser Radial (Women): Annalise Murphy (Silver medalist); 49er: Ryan Seaton, Matt McGovern; 49erFX: Andrea Brewster, Saskia Tidey; Laser: Finn Lynch; Paralympic Sonar: John Twomey, Ian Costello & Austin O’Carroll

Ireland has won two Olympics medals in sailing events, both silver: David Wilkins, Jamie Wilkinson in the Flying Dutchman at Moscow 1980, and Annalise Murphy in the Laser Radial at Rio 2016.

The current team, as of December 2020, consists of Laser sailors Finn Lynch, Liam Glynn and Ewan McMahon, 49er pairs Ryan Seaton and Seafra Guilfoyle, and Sean Waddilove and Robert Dickson, as well as Laser Radial sailors Annalise Murphy and Aoife Hopkins.

Irish Sailing is the National Governing Body for sailing in Ireland.

Irish Sailing’s Performance division is responsible for selecting and nurturing Olympic contenders as part of its Performance Pathway.

The Performance Pathway is Irish Sailing’s Olympic talent pipeline. The Performance Pathway counts over 70 sailors from 11 years up in its programme.The Performance Pathway is made up of Junior, Youth, Academy, Development and Olympic squads. It provides young, talented and ambitious Irish sailors with opportunities to move up through the ranks from an early age. With up to 100 young athletes training with the Irish Sailing Performance Pathway, every aspect of their performance is planned and closely monitored while strong relationships are simultaneously built with the sailors and their families

Rory Fitzpatrick is the head coach of Irish Sailing Performance. He is a graduate of University College Dublin and was an Athens 2004 Olympian in the Laser class.

The Performance Director of Irish Sailing is James O’Callaghan. Since 2006 James has been responsible for the development and delivery of athlete-focused, coach-led, performance-measured programmes across the Irish Sailing Performance Pathway. A Business & Economics graduate of Trinity College Dublin, he is a Level 3 Qualified Coach and Level 2 Coach Tutor. He has coached at five Olympic Games and numerous European and World Championship events across multiple Olympic classes. He is also a member of the Irish Sailing Foundation board.

Annalise Murphy is by far and away the biggest Irish sailing star. Her fourth in London 2012 when she came so agonisingly close to a bronze medal followed by her superb silver medal performance four years later at Rio won the hearts of Ireland. Murphy is aiming to go one better in Tokyo 2021. 

Under head coach Rory Fitzpatrick, the coaching staff consists of Laser Radial Academy coach Sean Evans, Olympic Laser coach Vasilij Zbogar and 49er team coach Matt McGovern.

The Irish Government provides funding to Irish Sailing. These funds are exclusively for the benefit of the Performance Pathway. However, this falls short of the amount required to fund the Performance Pathway in order to allow Ireland compete at the highest level. As a result the Performance Pathway programme currently receives around €850,000 per annum from Sport Ireland and €150,000 from sponsorship. A further €2 million per annum is needed to have a major impact at the highest level. The Irish Sailing Foundation was established to bridge the financial gap through securing philanthropic donations, corporate giving and sponsorship.

The vision of the Irish Sailing Foundation is to generate the required financial resources for Ireland to scale-up and execute its world-class sailing programme. Irish Sailing works tirelessly to promote sailing in Ireland and abroad and has been successful in securing funding of 1 million euro from Sport Ireland. However, to compete on a par with other nations, a further €2 million is required annually to realise the ambitions of our talented sailors. For this reason, the Irish Sailing Foundation was formed to seek philanthropic donations. Led by a Board of Directors and Head of Development Kathryn Grace, the foundation lads a campaign to bridge the financial gap to provide the Performance Pathway with the funds necessary to increase coaching hours, upgrade equipment and provide world class sport science support to a greater number of high-potential Irish sailors.

The Senior and Academy teams of the Performance Pathway are supported with the provision of a coach, vehicle, coach boat and boats. Even with this level of subsidy there is still a large financial burden on individual families due to travel costs, entry fees and accommodation. There are often compromises made on the amount of days a coach can be hired for and on many occasions it is necessary to opt out of major competitions outside Europe due to cost. Money raised by the Irish Sailing Foundation will go towards increased quality coaching time, world-class equipment, and subsiding entry fees and travel-related costs. It also goes towards broadening the base of talented sailors that can consider campaigning by removing financial hurdles, and the Performance HQ in Dublin to increase efficiency and reduce logistical issues.

The ethos of the Performance Pathway is progression. At each stage international performance benchmarks are utilised to ensure the sailors are meeting expectations set. The size of a sailor will generally dictate which boat they sail. The classes selected on the pathway have been identified as the best feeder classes for progression. Currently the Irish Sailing Performance Pathway consists of the following groups: * Pathway (U15) Optimist and Topper * Youth Academy (U19) Laser 4.7, Laser Radial and 420 * Development Academy (U23) Laser, Laser Radial, 49er, 49erFX * Team IRL (direct-funded athletes) Laser, Laser Radial, 49er, 49erFX

The Irish Sailing performance director produces a detailed annual budget for the programme which is presented to Sport Ireland, Irish Sailing and the Foundation for detailed discussion and analysis of the programme, where each item of expenditure is reviewed and approved. Each year, the performance director drafts a Performance Plan and Budget designed to meet the objectives of Irish Performance Sailing based on an annual review of the Pathway Programmes from Junior to Olympic level. The plan is then presented to the Olympic Steering Group (OSG) where it is independently assessed and the budget is agreed. The OSG closely monitors the delivery of the plan ensuring it meets the agreed strategy, is within budget and in line with operational plans. The performance director communicates on an ongoing basis with the OSG throughout the year, reporting formally on a quarterly basis.

Due to the specialised nature of Performance Sport, Irish Sailing established an expert sub-committee which is referred to as the Olympic Steering Group (OSG). The OSG is chaired by Patrick Coveney and its objective is centred around winning Olympic medals so it oversees the delivery of the Irish Sailing’s Performance plan.

At Junior level (U15) sailors learn not only to be a sailor but also an athlete. They develop the discipline required to keep a training log while undertaking fitness programmes, attending coaching sessions and travelling to competitions. During the winter Regional Squads take place and then in spring the National Squads are selected for Summer Competitions. As sailors move into Youth level (U19) there is an exhaustive selection matrix used when considering a sailor for entry into the Performance Academy. Completion of club training programmes, attendance at the performance seminars, physical suitability and also progress at Junior and Youth competitions are assessed and reviewed. Once invited in to the Performance Academy, sailors are given a six-month trial before a final decision is made on their selection. Sailors in the Academy are very closely monitored and engage in a very well planned out sailing, training and competition programme. There are also defined international benchmarks which these sailors are required to meet by a certain age. Biannual reviews are conducted transparently with the sailors so they know exactly where they are performing well and they are made aware of where they may need to improve before the next review.

©Afloat 2020