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Displaying items by tag: Dublin Bay Yacht racing

#Lecture- "Dublin Bay, the Cradle of Yacht Racing-Rewriting the Story of our Sport", a public lecture by Hal Sisk, yachting historian is to be held next Thursday 3 April (8pm) at the Poolbeg Boat and Yacht Club, Ringsend in Dublin 4.

This is the final lecture of the Members of Glenua & Friends 2013-14 series held in the Ringsend venue from where there is a lecture entrance fee of €5 in aid of RNLI. For further details contact: 087 2129614.

The current series was very well attended and the organisers wish to thank you for your valuable support in that regard. Lectures will return in October and no doubt bringing more fascinating topics in the cosy surroundings of the Poolbeg clubhouse and bar.

Returning to the final lecture of this season, the topic of the amateur sport of sailing, as we know it, first emerged, not in Holland, not in Cowes, and not even in Cork, but right here in Dublin Bay!

Earlier "yachting" episodes used entirely professional crews, and the yacht owners and friends were little more than passengers. But from the 1850s in Dublin Bay the sport developed with active leisure sailors actually learning to sail and race their yachts themselves, as we all do today. And for two decades, 1855 to 1875, Dubliners led the world in shaping the sport, including setting the original rules, and also introducing such innovations as offshore and singlehanded racing.

With many illustrations from the paintings and photographs of the period, yachting historian Hal Sisk will show how much of a challenge it was to be the pioneers, and in what kind of yachts they sailed.
Hal's restorations of the classic yachts Vagrant and Peggy Bawn are exemplary in authenticity, and he has entertained audiences in five continents with his enthusiastic presentations.


Published in Boating Fixtures

The Half Ton Class was created by the Offshore Racing Council for boats within the racing band not exceeding 22'-0". The ORC decided that the rule should "....permit the development of seaworthy offshore racing yachts...The Council will endeavour to protect the majority of the existing IOR fleet from rapid obsolescence caused by ....developments which produce increased performance without corresponding changes in ratings..."

When first introduced the IOR rule was perfectly adequate for rating boats in existence at that time. However yacht designers naturally examined the rule to seize upon any advantage they could find, the most noticeable of which has been a reduction in displacement and a return to fractional rigs.

After 1993, when the IOR Mk.III rule reached it termination due to lack of people building new boats, the rule was replaced by the CHS (Channel) Handicap system which in turn developed into the IRC system now used.

The IRC handicap system operates by a secret formula which tries to develop boats which are 'Cruising type' of relatively heavy boats with good internal accommodation. It tends to penalise boats with excessive stability or excessive sail area.


The most significant events for the Half Ton Class has been the annual Half Ton Cup which was sailed under the IOR rules until 1993. More recently this has been replaced with the Half Ton Classics Cup. The venue of the event moved from continent to continent with over-representation on French or British ports. In later years the event is held biennially. Initially, it was proposed to hold events in Ireland, Britain and France by rotation. However, it was the Belgians who took the ball and ran with it. The Class is now managed from Belgium. 

At A Glance – Half Ton Classics Cup Winners

  • 2017 – Kinsale – Swuzzlebubble – Phil Plumtree – Farr 1977
  • 2016 – Falmouth – Swuzzlebubble – Greg Peck – Farr 1977
  • 2015 – Nieuwport – Checkmate XV – David Cullen – Humphreys 1985
  • 2014 – St Quay Portrieux – Swuzzlebubble – Peter Morton – Farr 1977
  • 2013 – Boulogne – Checkmate XV – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1985
  • 2011 – Cowes – Chimp – Michael Kershaw – Berret 1978
  • 2009 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978
  • 2007 – Dun Laoghaire – Henri-Lloyd Harmony – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1980~
  • 2005 – Dinard – Gingko – Patrick Lobrichon – Mauric 1968
  • 2003 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978

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