Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

Displaying items by tag: Mermaid Nationals

#mermaid – Strong winds gusting to 35–knots forced the cancellation of the first race of the Mermaid Sailing Association National Championships 2014 at Rush Sailing Club yesterday.
The annual event for the three man dinghy class, which typically starts with the Rockabill Trophy as a first race prize was scrubbed as strong winds hit the north Dublin venue. Racing continues this morning (more strong winds are forecast) and runs until 15th August.

Published in Mermaid
After a two hour postponement the slack winds filled in for a Race Officer Liam Dinneen allowing him to run today's first race of Mermaid week in near perfect conditions with NW 9 knots and sunshine.  There are thirty three boats racing, from clubs in the Dublin area, Wexford and of course Foynes.  The oldest boat sailing this week is No. 11 Oonagh built in 1937 whilst the newest boat is No. 188 Innocence built in 1997.

All age groups are sailing from pre-teen to some in their eighties.  There are five pairs for brothers helming ten competing boats - Enda and Anthony Weldon from Rush, James and Vincent McCormack from Foynes, James's sons Darragh and Mark McCormack, Jim and Anthony Carthy from Rush and veterans Shay and Martin O'Toole from Skerries.  There are also many husband/wife crews.

Frankie Browne of Skerries in Cara II (No. 135) got a great start and built on his lead during the first beat and again on the first run.  He lead for the first eight legs, but on the ninth and last leg he failed to cover effectively and was beaten by Jim Carthy in No. 123 Vee (Rush) in 1st and Jim Dempsey in No. 183 Wannago (Skerries).

The 2009 Champion, Paddy Dillon (131 Wild Wind, Rush) was a solid fourth, with Anthony Carthy (188 Innocence, Rush) in fifth.  Derek Joyce (187 Zuleika, Wexford) who had been in the top three also lost out on the last beat and came in sixth.

The winner of the "Daphne" fleet (equivalent of Silver Fleet) was Alan Berg of Rush, sailing No 93 Swallow.  The winner of the "Designer" fleet was Mark Boylan in No. 177 This Is It, sailing a boat his father Joe built and sailed for many years.  Best local boat was Vincent McCormack in No 119 Three Chevrons.

Racing today starts at 10:30 with live updates on the Mermaid Week website

Published in Shannon Estuary

Foynes Yacht Club has been chosen to host the Mermaid National Championships.  The competition, last hosted in Foynes in 2004, will see almost forty sailing boats of a classic 1950’s design, racing daily for seven days on the estuary waters close to the picturesque and historic port village. The competition brings with it a festival atmosphere, as over a hundred sailors with their families and friends settle in for a week packed with competitive and social activities by day and by night.

A special feature of this year’s competition will be the Family Fun Day which will be held on the Bank Holiday Monday (2nd Aug) and will seek to raise much needed funds for the RNLI.  With championship racing finishing early on that day, the club will be thrown open to the public for them to enjoy some fun and frolics both on and off the water.  Among other events, a sponsored Mud Splat Obstacle Course Race will make for entertaining viewing and a display from the Coastguard Helicopter is expected.

The club is very pleased to announce that Shannon Foynes Port Company (SFPC) will act as ‘Anchor’ Sponsor for the event.  Joint planning activities are well underway to ensure that all activities are run in a safe, efficient and entertaining fashion.  The committee and members will now be canvassing financial support from the business community in the Limerick area in an effort to defray the considerable expense to the club of running such a prestigious festival event.  In return, sponsors who chose to associate their business with this National Championship will be assured of high exposure of their company name and products, achieved through a range of promotional ideas.

Regular Updates are available on

Published in Racing
Tagged under

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. 

Who is Your Sailor of the Year 2021?
Total Votes:
First Vote:
Last Vote:

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

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

dbsc mainbutton
Howth Yacht Club
Kinsale Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club
Royal Saint George Yacht Club

Featured Brokers

leinster sidebutton

Featured Associations

isora sidebutton

Featured Webcams

Featured Events 2022

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton
quantum sidebutton
watson sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
osm sidebutton

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
mansfield sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
wavelengths sidebutton

Please show your support for Afloat by donating