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Displaying items by tag: Multihull

The Irish Multihull Committee has postponed its Eastern Championships at Wicklow Sailing Club and the Irish Open Championships at Swords Sailing Club due to Covid 19.

Both events will now take place in 2021.

Ballyholme Yacht Club has agreed to upgrade the 'Weekend of Speed' on October 17th and18th to the Irish Open Championships for the multihull fleet. The weekend will also see 49er and 29er skiffs in action on Belfast Lough.

The last of three Irish Multihull events this year will be the Northerns at Ballyholme Yacht Club on Belfast Lough on 17th and 18th October. It also has the grand title of Weekend of Speed, rescheduled due to COVID 19. Before the finale are the Easterns at Wicklow, on 5th/6th September, rescheduled due to the now cancelled Round Ireland race being on the same weekend. The Nationals are at Swords on 18th and 19th September. For the Weekend of Speed World F18 Championship Race Officer Robin Gray will be keeping the fleet in on their toes in Belfast Lough.

At BYC an expected fleet of over ten Multihulls will be joined by ten to fifteen 29ers, and ten 49ers, the latter to include Olympic campaigners Ryan Seaton and Seafra Guilfoyle, the under 23 World champions, Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove; Matt McGovern and other up and coming youth 49ers.

 Chair of the IMA Richard Swanston says " We are bringing in some innovative initiatives to encourage as many competitors as is possible (given the restraints of COVID) to support the efforts of the host Yacht Clubs. To that end there is a 50% Discount on all I.M.A. entry fees including Saturday evening food and a travellers' incentive for competitors who enter all three events. A bonus is free entry to the final event of the year at Ballyholme if all events have been attended but to avail of the discounts, competitors must pre-enter. It is essential to enable the clubs to organise race committees, food etc. in what are very difficult times". He adds " We have invited overseas competitors to attend any event with a free entry".

Published in Belfast Lough
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A few years ago, well actually it’s pushing on eight years now, four Hurricane 5.9 catamaran’s from Swords Sailing and Boat Club (SSBC) sailed from Howth Yacht Club to the Rockabill Lighthouse and back writes multihull sailor Stephen Broaders. I was onboard one of them and we spent a long time talking about how great it was to do a long passage type sail on fast beach cats and that we should definitely get out on the Irish Sea again soon

There were many coastal races or rallies on catamarans in years gone by such as the Lambay race, Skerries to Clogher Head, an Irish Sea crossing and other parts of the Irish coast around Cork, Galway and more.

So year after year passed by and we would occasionally mention the idea of doing another long coastal trip. Most of the Hurricanes had switched to the more modern F18 class as a result of the World Championships coming to Ballyholme in 2014. In the following years more joined us and we found ourselves going to the F18 World Championships in Germany 2015, Denmark 2017 and Spain 2019 for big fleet world-class racing which was and is a fantastic experience but in the backs of our minds we all still had this desire to get some coastal sailing done in Ireland

So late last year with a bit of pestering from a certain tall South African in our fleet and a chat with his crew who happens to be a member of Wicklow Sailing Club I decided to hell with it I’m gonna get this thing organised. I called the IMA Chair and asked could I put a date in for a coastal raid from north Dublin to Wicklow, he said yes, absolutely great, yes do it!

So I got the date set and put it out there to the fleet, we got commitments from four boats to do it. With about two weeks to go, I called Howth Yacht Club and asked could we launch from there and they very kindly said yes, providing us with excellent facilities as they had with the Rockabill trip eight years earlier. At the same time the crew I mentioned earlier contacted Wicklow SC who were delighted to assist so all was in place for our grand return to the open seas.

Multhull 2 F18’s in Howth Yacht Club - a C2, Nacra Infusion, Hobie Wildcat & Hobie Tiger

In the week leading up to our Saturday departure we all started watching the weather forecast but as each day passed the wind predicted got lighter and lighter. By Thursday it was actually showing 0 knots gusting 2 in Dublin Bay and I thought oh well that’s that scrapped. Friday came and it showed a marginal improvement we had some breeze 6 knots or so but still not quite enough.

By 12 noon I was thinking of canning it as the phone rang, it was from a Mini Transat sailor from Galway who persuaded me to go ahead and set sail early, he had spent a bit of time looking at weather patterns and forecasts and was sure it would be ok. I also had the South African desperately trying to get back for it with delayed planes & taxis etc who was looking forward to it and didn’t want to disappoint him, So I said ok let’s go ahead,

A very long day ensued with boat derigging, re-rigging and bringing cars, vans and trailers to Wicklow and eventually getting back to Dublin for 1:30 am for a few hours sleep.
We all got ourselves over to Howth for 7:30 am and I looked at the forecast in the taxi en route and hallelujah it was showing 10 knots gusting 16.

"At 9:30 am we set sail from the mouth of Howth Harbour, escorted out by a very curious seal"

After an hour and a bit getting one boat finished and all the sails hoisted we were ready to set off. Many thanks to Howth YC for accommodating our early start.

At 9:30 am we set sail from the mouth of Howth Harbour, escorted out by a very curious seal all the boats stayed together as we rounded Howth Head, accompanied by a cover RIB from SSBC.

After a bit of tricky sailing passing the Cliffs of Howth, we headed out across Dublin Bay. With no ships passing, we began to sail fast with spinnakers flying part way and two sail reaching the rest. As we got halfway the excitement was building on each boat as we realized we are doing it and the conditions are perfect. We sailed on passing Dun Laoghaire reaching Dalkey island within 30 minutes of leaving Howth harbour. Smiles all round especially on the Hobie Tiger where Sean Lemonnier, age 11, a very promising and enthusiastic young cat sailor was having a blast out on the wire downwind. 

After a quick chat to the local fishermen on the water in Dalkey, we headed for Bray, stopping there just off the beach for refreshments. They probably don’t know but the Bray airshow had f18s flying by...well kind of!

On again and out around Bray Head towards our next regrouping spot Greystones. We were hitting top speeds of 20knots at this point in flat water and 20 degrees, Perfect.

Multihull WicklowA Multihull heading for Wicklow Sailing Club
Waiting for us on the water in Greystones was a RIB from Wicklow Sailing Club which had made its way up to assist with cover. After we made contact with them on VHF radio and another regrouping we continued on flying spinnakers and gybing every 10 minutes or so in an exhilarating

impromptu race to Wicklow, with one boat going inshore, two going out and in again crisscrossing in close quarters, everyone had a smile from ear to ear, it truly was magical and if you ask each of us to describe the experience we just don't have the words to articulate it.

Finally we made it to Wicklow Harbour to a great welcome from Wicklow SC, we were cheered into the slip and helped up to the club where we were fed & watered by a very enthusiastic & generous group of fellow sailors at the club before heading back out to take part in their round the cans racing with the juniors

A truly great weekend of sailing with lifetime memories, well done to all those who took part and helped to make this happen, long-distance raids are definitely back on the calendar going forward, now to start planning the next one, whos up for it?

The author - Stephen Broaders – Nacra Infusion- Sword Sailing and Boating Club (SSBC) The tall South African- Wyatt Orsmond – C2 -SSBC
His crew from Wicklow - Patrick Billington – C2 - WSC
Mini Transat sailor - Yannick lemonier – Hobie Tiger - GBSC

The other sailors
Pawel Trojanowski Hobie Wildcat - SSBC Sean Duranbusch Hobie Wildcat -SSBC Siobhan Broaders Nacra Infusion -SSBC Sean Lemonnier Hobie Tiger - GBSC Laurick Mathieu Hobie Tiger - GBSC

Special thanks to –

Dermot McHugh RIB - SSBC Kinga Trojanowska RIB -SSBC
Evan Orsmond and Conor Kavanagh helping with rigging and de-rigging. Fred Connolly, Marina Supervisor Howth Yacht Club
Caroline Gore-Grimes Honorary sailing secretary Howth Yacht Club

Wicklow Sailing Club (WSC)
David Balesty – Race Official - WSC Kyran OGrady – Rib (Commodore) - WSC Isobel OGrady – Rib - WSC
Denise Cummins – Onshore support, BBQ – WSC
Mark Redmond – Onshore support, Bar - WSC Richard Swanston BYC - IMA CHAIR

Published in Cruising
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Swords Sailing Club (SSC) hosted Australian multihull sailor Mitch Booth who competed at no less then four Olympics in the Tornado class, medaling twice. Here Patrick Wodhams of SSC describes the training weekend with the sailor who has competed in 64 World championships and won 10 of them.

Mitch now resides in sunny Spain and is in demand around the globe advising and training with Olympic teams and class associations. Some of us were lucky enough to meet and race against him at the 2017 F18 World’s in Denmark.

With eight F18’s, two Hurricane 5.9’s and one F16 in attendance, Mitch brought the sun with him from Spain, day one looked like we would have no wind as a result; the forecast was quite light. However, first up was a briefing in the club house; going over all that secret racing stuff we all want to know. Tuning, boat handling, tactics/strategy, starts, acceleration, mark rounding’s, tacking/gybing and of course going fast……

Armed with some of that secret knowledge, like gladiators ready to tend their chariots we rigged our boats, 1 extra notch here, an extra pound on the Loos gauge there; with brief boat on boat one on ones with Mitch. By the time we had finished and got kitted up, we were greeted by the start of a fantastic sea breeze building as we launched our boats for our first on the water session.

If you have been lucky enough to compete at a World’s or any big fleet racing, you will know that starts are crucial. Boat handling is key to parking the boat and making sure you don’t collide with anyone; most importantly that you get away fast into clean breeze from the front row and don’t get rolled or spat out the back. Assistant coach Dermot McHugh and his brother Kevin ferried Mitch around and laid the marks for our quick turn around practise starts, each with varying degrees of success and one or two boats OCS or so we thought.

After lunch the fairly constant sea breeze created almost perfect champagne sailing conditions. We progressed to a one lap race after every third start finishing downwind with crews trapezing and kites flying.

After a fantastic first day, we headed back into a debrief session utilising excellent drone footage courtesy of Kinga Trojanowska. There was no hiding and the guilty OCS culprits were well and truly outed, all in good jest. A delicious barbecue and refreshments followed with some great stories to be heard form Mitch and all.

Day two started exactly the same as day one with the sun shining and not much breeze. Following a quick briefing in the clubhouse, we congregated around one boat in the boat park as Mitch went through rigging and tuning for all the varying conditions. Sail shape and airflow over it, are all influenced by the many controls at the helm and crews disposal, getting them all in the optimum position at the right time is somewhat of a black art; times that by three to include the mainsail, jib and gennaker and you can see why this crucial knowledge separates the master from the pupil. Following Q’s & A’s everybody agreed and enlightened by a true master.

As we consumed a quick lunch the magnificent sea breeze had kicked in, we launched and sailed a square course to cover all points of sail as Mitch and Dermot followed us round with varying tips on what we could do to improve. By 2pm we joined the Swords scheduled racing for the afternoon and put into practise all that we had learnt. We were joined on the water by quite a few Lasers, and other boats that made up the remainder of the Swords fleet. Great fun as we weaved in and out on a fantastic sailing weekend finally.

Published in Irish Sailing Classes
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#Foiling - Orders are flying in for a new design foiling catamaran, according to its French makers.

Easy to Fly is the brainchild of solo sailor Jean-Pierre Dick, who placed fourth in the most recent Vendée Globe, and Guillaume Verdier, designer behind the new foiling One Design monohull chosen for future editions of the Volvo Ocean Race.

The 26ft multihull is designed to fly safely from a wind speed of 8 knots with three people on board — and is likely to be a future fixture on a French sailing scene that’s fully embraced foilingfoiling as a discipline.

Launched in September 2016, sales for Easy to Fly are up to six across Europe — including one to England, to the team behind the Open7.50 Cool Runnings, who will take delivery of their boat next week.

Foiling is in right now. And with Olympic hero Annalise Murphy leading the Irish charge in the relatively new class, there’s never been a better time to get on board and get flying on foils.

Visit for more.

Published in Marine Trade

The second edition of the Pre-owned Multihull boat show takes place in Canet-en-Roussillon in the South of France near the Spanish border.

The show is an indication of the growing demand for multihulls coming from owners seeking longer live–aboard opportunities.

The Nautipole and boat show organiser M2O will exhibit about 30 pre-owned power and sailing catamarans from 37 to 82 feet on the pontoons of the Yacht harbour. An exhibitor village will offer multihulls services and equipment.

The event runs from Thursday October 6th to Sunday 9th in the Yacht harbor of Canet-en-Roussillon. 

The shows opening hours to the public are from 10 am to 6 pm. Entry is free.

Published in Boat Sales
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Last weekend, September 12th-13th the Carlingford Sailing Club hosted the Irish Open Multihull Championships 2015. Sailors arrived on Friday night to 40 knot winds and driving rain not deterred at all they set up tents! After a few hours the tents had been trashed, so several competitors had to take to the race office shed…. a very cosy welcome to Ireland. Simon Flack was over to defend his title won last year at Lough Neagh, sailing this year with multi-Irish champion crew Barry Swanston. A wrap up by Richard Swanston.

Download results below as a jpeg file.

The open fleet format with all types of catamarans from a catapult to an F18 rated under SCHRS and racing an equal number of windward – leeward and triangular courses (to balance performance strengths) was used with all boats starting off the same start line. Classes were also subdivided into C1 and C2 fleets for individual fleet prizes. Saturdays forecast was gloomy to say the least. Rain and 25 knot baseline gusting to 40 knots from the S.W. To this, add the infamous Carlingford Kettles roaring off the top of the hills at all angles ripping up mini tornadoes of water that march and meander across the Lough ….not to be missed!! After much head scratching and nervous looks to the broken water in the lough and vicious squalls rolling down off the hills, it was decided (after a postponement) to ‘ give it a rattle sure’! We were treated to an unexpected two races in variable but safe conditions.

Saturday – Race 1 & 2
pre startSwannie and Jenni executed a perfect port tack start only to fall into the pack mid first beat. The fleet then had several place changes throughout the race with Simon Flack & Barry Swanston quickly getting used to the Cirrus and had a great race with Wyatt Orsmond & Patrick Billlington in their new Goodall C2. With an increase to the breeze, the Hurricane 5.9 sx with it’s Irish Aussie pair were flying. Wyatt pipped them at the post to secure his first bullet. Swannie and Jenni Brittain were 3rd. Again in Race 2, the pattern was set with the Orsmond/Billlington and Flack/Swanston leading the way with very competitive sailing throughout the race. Simon Flack settled to the Cirrus and pulled off a great first place.

Sunday – Race 3, 4, 5 & 6
Sunday sore heads woke to a much more benign weather picture with Carlingford looking its glorious best: a gentle southerly 4knots to 8knots the forecast. We all sailed out in sparkling 10-12 knots kites up in bright sunshine!

With the wind freshening racing was tight in both the C1 and C2 fleets. Flack/Swanston again came out on top with Orsmond/Billlington in 2nd place and Shane & Matthew Hatton coming in 3rd again. Race 4 (triangle course again) the wind was now a steadyish 15- 18 knots, with the tidal influences beginning to take effect. The judging of lay line was proving critical both upwind and downwind. Swanston was boxed out whilst leading at the start finish gate and the leaders then misjudging the downwind gybing angles to allow the fleet to group together for a frantic last high speed lap! David Biddulf sailing with newbie to cats Stephen Magee had an incredibly close race with Si and Baz to win by 1 second with Wyatt in the C2 snapping at their heels 19 secs behind. Race 5 (windward–leeward) the Flack/Swanston and Orsmond/Billlington flew away in this race with only seconds separating them, throughout Flack/Swanston winning by only 11 seconds! The Aussi Hurricane 5.9SX showing some blistering pace up wind and down unfortunately having some gear failure lead to a clearing of the heads! The Shockwave in third place again. Race 6 belonged to Wyatt and Paddy in their C2 leading from start to finish. Swannie and Jenni showed some great pace in the breeze to have a dingdong battle with Si and Baz the battling Jenni (girlfriend) beating the master of the hoist baz (boyfriend) to the fill the kite and powered over the Cirrus at the spreader mark. The battle continued to the last beat when just as the Shocker rolled the Cirrus Swannie’s mainsheet broke!

The white sail boats had close racing between Dermott Mangan (dad) in his amazing Catapult and Neil Mangan (son) with Simon Griffin as crew on their Dart16. Both gaining excellent overall placing under S.C.H.R.S. They may have done even better with a longer second leg to the gybe mark improving the angle between the marks. So overall went to Simon Flack and Barry Swanston by one point. Great racing! C2 fleet was won by Neil Mangan from the evergreen Dermot Mangan. Travellers Trophy was won by Wyatt.

Published in Racing

#multihull – Competitors from all the cat clubs came to Ballyholme Yacht Club last weekend to have some great racing over short course format with multiple starts. Saturday dawned with little and fickle winds but when the SW building breeze settled the fleet was treated to five competitive races. Adrian Allen and Barry Swanston were in dominant form with five wins.

A great challenging NW breeze of 15kts – 22 kts met us on Sunday to test every one with very fast downhill rides. Adrian and Barry again won the races, but with all five leading F18's hitting the top mark together in a wall of spray and curses racing was very competitive !

Wyatt Orsmond in his new Goodall C2 from Blessington Sailing Club was however biting at his heels finishing second overall and is sure to provide stiff competition in the events to come.

Maxie who was put in at the deep end with Biddy from Swords Sailing Club may well have wished for a softer introduction to Catamaran F18 sailing but finished extremely well in third place. Jenni Brittain sailing with Swannie in her first Irish event counting only a few hours F18 sailing experience had some very encouraging results and began to show some form even in the big breeze, finishing on joint points with Biddy and a very bruised Maxie, loosing out on discard to fourth place.

Published in Racing

#multihullsnews – In a novel move from MGM Boats, the Irish boat sales firm have brought in a Lagoon 52 Cruising Catamarans from France for a ten week demonstration period around the Irish coast. From the above picture it's clear she's already done the rounds off Cork and is now heading to Dublin Bay for several weeks of demo–sail appointments at Dun Laoghaire.
The Lagoon 52 is a high volume cruising catamaran incorporating a large flybridge steering station, a radical aft-stepped mast and self-tacking genoa that makes this big yacht so easily managed by the smallest of crews. More on the boat on Afloat boats for sale here.

Published in News Update

#Spindrift - The race-winning multihull Spindrift has capsized in gale force winds off Dun Laoghaire this afternoon (22 June) at the start of the Route des Princes series of inshore racing spectacle on Dublin Bay, as David O'Brien reports on scene.

The MOD70 trimaran that was first into Dun Laoghaire from Lisbon on Wednesday capsized meres from spectators in Scotsman's Bay ahead of the first of three inshore races.

Rescue photos below.

The accident happened about 700 metres off the starting line in the first race, as the boats were accelerating in the strong and gusty winds. The boats were not carrying full sail as a precaution against the strong offshore winds blowing in the bay. Today's in–port racing was billed as 'fast and furious'.

At least one person is injured and is being treated upturned hull of the stricken craft. As of 3.08pm a rescue helicopter was dropping its winchman to the vessel. 

It is feared by National Yacht Club personnel that the mast of the inverted trimaran is stuck in the sea bed and may be broken.

All racing has now been postponed as rescue services attended the scene. Eight crew were onboard the vessel at the time of the capsize.

Update 3.10pm: All other boats have returned to Dun Laoghaire Harbour as rescue services continue to attend to the capsized Spindrift and its crew.

Update 3.18pm: Weather conditions in Dun Laoghaire continue to be strong and gusty, and it's reported that some local DBSC RC racing had already been cancelled earlier today.

Update 3.27pm: A news update on the Route des Princes website (via @sailracewin) says one crewman on the upturned Spindrift has a back pain.

Update 3.35pm: Twitter users Mark Lloyd (@Lloyd_Images) and Philip Bromwell (@philipbromwell) have posted photos of the failed Spindrift in Dublin Bay as emergency services attend to the scene.

Update 3.39pm: The crewman casualty has been winched to the helicopter and is being airlifted to Tallaght Hospital. His condition remains unclear.

Update 3.41pm: Triage for any injured racers has been set up at the National Yacht Club and all rescue boats have been asked to report to the NYC to account for numbers.

Update 3.53pm: Assessments are currently being made as to how to recover the 70ft hull still floating north of Dalkey Island.

Update 4.04pm: Sailing journalist Kate Laven comments on Twitter re the Spindrift capsize: "Everyone recovered but two injured"

Update 4.08pm: The Route des Princes website has followed up its earlier update with a news post which confirms that weather conditions at the time of the Spindrift capsize were 20 knots with strong gusts.

Update 4.55pm: Dun Laoghaire lifeboat towing the upturned Spindrift hull (minus mast) towards Dun Laoghaire harbour

Update 6,00pm: The upturned hull has been successfully righted, the hull is intact but the mast is broken. 

Update 7.00pm: There are unconfirmed reports that the injury to the Spindrift crew man is a broken pelvis. 

Update 8.00pm: Spindrift racing team release statement on capsize and injury to crew member


Rescue craft, local boats and the Dun Laoghaire lifeboat attend the upturned hull. Photo: Gareth Craig


The Coastguard helicopter arrives on scene and a winch man is lowered to make an assessment. Photo:


Rescue personnel and Sprindrift crew on the upturned hull in Dublin Bay this afternoon. Photo:

LaRoute des Princes0371

Spindrift minus her mast is lifted in Dun Laoghaire harbour this evening. Photo: Michael Chester

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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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