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Paris 2024 Olympic Sailing News
2023's Irish Sailor of the Year Eve McMahon of Howth Yacht Club had the best result of the Irish Olympic sailing team at the Princess Sofia Regatta in Palma earlier in April, finishing 14th overall out of 114 boats after 5th place on her final day of racing. She races again next week at French Olympic Week in Hyeres
Next week, a full Irish Sailing squad will race in all three Paris 2024 qualified disciplines at the French Olympic Week on the Cote D'Azur. The event will feature 824 sailors on 660 boats from 90 nations competing in ten…
Lara Gillespie (Wicklow Cyclist)/Dean Clancy (Sligo Boxer) pictured at the launch of the Opening Ceremony wear, designed by LW Pearl by Laura Weber for Team Ireland for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.
The Olympic Federation of Ireland has officially unveiled the bespoke Opening Ceremony wear for Team Ireland at the upcoming Olympic Games in Paris. Designed by Laura Weber, a renowned Irish designer based in New York, the uniform is a perfect…
Olympic ILCA 6 qualified Eve McMahon (Howth Yacht Club) had the best result of the Irish Team at the Princess Sofia Regatta in Palma, finishing 14th overall of 114 boats after a 5th place finish on her final day of racing.
Olympic ILCA 6 qualified Eve McMahon (Howth Yacht Club), the 2023 Irish Sailor of the Year, had the best result of the Irish Team at the Princess Sofia Regatta in Palma, finishing 14th overall out of 114 boats after a…
Micky Beckett, 29, dominated the men’s dinghy class at the traditional Olympic classes season opener in Mallorca
The British Sailing Team’s Micky Beckett scored a crucial victory in the countdown to Paris 2024, winning the Princess Sofia Regatta in Palma for the third consecutive year. Beckett, 29, dominated the men’s dinghy class at the traditional Olympic classes…
Micky Beckett won ILCA 7 gold with a day to spare, on day five of the World Cup Series at the 53 Trofeo Princesa Sofía Mallorca
Great Britain’s Micky Beckett has won ILCA 7 gold with a day to spare, on day five of the World Cup Series at the 53 Trofeo Princesa Sofía Mallorca by Iberostar. Matching Beckett’s feat and conquering the Nacra 17 mixed…
Royal Cork duo Seafra Guilfyole and Johnny Durcan competing at the 53 Trofeo Princesa Sofia Mallorca
On light-wind day four of the World Cup Series event at the 53 Trofeo Princesa Sofia Mallorca, Irish competitors maintained their overall positions, with one day left to sail before the medal races on Saturday. The light sea-breeze condition on…
Royal Cork duo Seafra Guilfyole and Johnny Durcan have moved up one place to 24th overall at the Trofeo Princesa Sofía Trophy in Mallorca
Another sea breeze day kept the giant 53 Trofeo Princesa Sofia Mallorca by Iberostar rolling through a demanding schedule of races. Across the classes are some marked, understandable differences between the mindsets of those who are in the throes of…
Ireland's Finn Lynch moved up nine places in the ILCA 7 class to 11th as the thermal sea-breeze conditions for which Mallorca’s Bay of Palma is world renowned returned to allow a full programme of competition to be completed on Tuesday, getting the giant 53 Trofeo Princesa Sofía Mallorca by Iberostar Olympic classes regatta back on course after Monday’s schedule was curtailed by strong winds and big waves
Great Britain’s Olympic hopeful Micky Beckett took advantage of a dramatic change of conditions at the 53 Trofeo Princesa Sofía Mallorca on the second day of the World Cup Series event. Ireland's Finn Lynch also made good on a lighter…
‘Full on’ ‘…crazy’ ‘…nuclear’ ‘…big winds opened the 53rd Trofeo Princesa Sofía Mallorca by Iberostar
With gusts to over 30 knots at times and a big, untidy swell which has been built up by nearly two weeks of strong winds in the Balearica Islands, of the ten Olympic scheduled events only the Formula Kite Men…
GBR's Micky Beckett from Wales is gunning for a third ILCA 7 title at the Trofeo Princesa Sofía Mallorca
After nearly two weeks of strong winds and big seas that have prevailed for the hundreds of teams and Olympic-class sailors who have been training on Mallorca’s Bay of Palma, competitors at the 53 Trofeo Princesa Sofía Mallorca look set…
Royal Cork duo of Seáfra Guilfoyle and Johnny Durcan are the only Irish 49er racing at the 53rd Trofeo Princess Sofia in Mallorca from Monday, April 1st
Over 1,100 sailors from 75 countries have arrived in the Bay of Palma, Mallorca, Spain for the 53rd edition of the Trofeo Princess Sofia, which is set to run from April 1 until April 6. Among the participants are Irish…
Irish Sailor of the Year Eve McMahon (extreme right) with the Women's U21 European Championship ILCA 6 prizewinners in Mallorca
A retiral in race nine of the 2024 Women's U21 European Championships dropped Ireland's Paris 2024 representative in the ILCA 6 class, Eve McMahon, off the podium.  Just crowned Irish Sailor of the Year recovered four places overall but despite scoring a second in race…
Storming along to the big win in Tangier. Eve McMahon was to show grace under pressure in maintaining a very clear lead in the ILCA U21 Worlds in Tangier
Friday evening’s announcement of the Irish Sailor of the Year 2023 title for 19-year-old Eve McMahon at her sailing home of Howth Yacht Club well captures the zeitgeist of mid-2020s Ireland, not least in the fact that the title holder…
Polish sailor Lilly May Niezabitowska continues to show a solid performance in the ILCA 6 U21 Women's European Championships in Mallorca
A retiral in race nine of the 2024 Women's U21 European Championships dropped Ireland's Paris 2024 representative in the ILCA 6 class, Eve McMahon, off the podium in Mallorca this afternoon. The Irish girl led the regatta most of the week, but a below-par…
Howth's Eve McMahon lies third in the ILCA 6 U21 Women's European Championships in Mallorca
Ireland's Paris 2024 representative in the ILCA 6 class, Eve McMahon (47-33-12), relinquished her lead in the 2024 Women's U21 European Championships after eight races sailed in Mallorca on Thursday after maintaining the top position since the start of the regatta. A…
Howth's Eve McMahon continues to lead the ILCA 6 U21 European Championships in Mallorca
Ireland's Paris 2024 representative in the ILCA 6 class, Eve McMahon, continues to lead the 2024 Women's U21 European Championships after five races sailed in Mallorca on Wednesday, but Poland's Lilly May Niezabitowska has whittled the Irish woman's margin down to…

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

Paris 2024 Olympic Sailing Competition

Where is the Paris 2024 Olympic Sailing Competition being held? Sailing at Paris 2024 will take place in Marseille on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea between 28 July and 8 August, and will feature Kiteboarding for the first time, following a successful Olympic debut in 2018 at the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires. The sailing event is over 700 km from the main Olympic Games venue in Paris.

What are the events? The Olympic Sailing Competition at Paris 2024 will feature ten Events:

  • Women’s: Windsurfing, Kite, Dinghy, Skiff
  • Men’s: Windsurfing, Kite, Dinghy, Skiff
  • Mixed: Dinghy, Multihull

How do you qualify for Paris 2024?  The first opportunity for athletes to qualify for Paris 2024 will be the Sailing World Championships, The Hague 2023, followed by the Men’s and Women’s Dinghy 2024 World Championships and then a qualifier on each of World Sailing’s six continents in each of the ten Events. The final opportunity is a last chance regatta to be held in 2024, just a few months before the Games begin.

50-50 split between male and female athletes: The Paris 2024 Games is set to be the first to achieve a 50-50 split between male and female athletes, building on the progress made at both Rio 2016 (47.5%) and Tokyo 2020 (48.8%). It will also be the first Olympic Games where two of the three Chief roles in the sailing event will be held by female officials,

At a Glance -  Paris Olympics Sailing Marseille

July 28th – August 8th Paris Olympics Sailing Marseille

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