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There were testing conditions on the third day of French Olympic Week at Hyères on the Cote D'Azur, France but Irish Sailor of the Year Eve McMahon of Howth Yacht Club managed to stay in the top ten, now lying eighth overall after five races sailed in the ILCA 6 class. 

ILCA 7

Ewan McMahon is lying 15th in the men's single-person dinghy (ILCA7 class) dropping back from eight overall on Tuesday. Rio 2016 veteran Finn Lynch (National Yacht Club), who is confirmed as the Irish Paris 2024 rep, is lying 34th.

 Howth's Eve McMahon lies eighth overall at French Olympic Week in Hyères after five races sailed Photo: Sailing EnergyHowth's Eve McMahon lies eighth overall at French Olympic Week in Hyères after five races sailed Photo: Sailing Energy

49er Trial

In the second of the Irish selection trials for Paris 2024, Robert Dickson (Howth YC) and Sean Waddilove (Skerries Sailing Club) have dropped back from eighth to 13th after seven races sailed.  The rival Irish crew of Séafra Guilfoyle and Johnny Durcan (Royal Cork Yacht Club) are 23rd.

Séafra Guilfoyle and Johnny Durcan (Royal Cork Yacht Club) are lying 23rd at French Olympic Week at Hyères Photo: Sailing EnergySéafra Guilfoyle and Johnny Durcan (Royal Cork Yacht Club) (IRL 11) are lying 23rd at French Olympic Week at Hyères Photo: Sailing Energy

Organisers of the annual French Olympic Week (SOF) are running two regattas concurrently, double the usual number of events with the 'Last Chance Regatta' to decide the 50 remaining nation places for Paris 2024 alongside the usual World Cup of Sailing series.

Results here

Howth Yacht Club boats have moved into the top ten of their respective events on the second day of French Olympic Week at Hyères on the Cote D'Azur, France, one of the last big regattas before the Olympic Games itself.

Eve McMahon Fifth

Both McMahon siblings from Howth Yacht Club fared well with Irish Sailor of the Year Eve McMahon now in fifth overall after her three opening races - Monday's racing for her women's single-person dinghy event (ILCA6 class) was cancelled due to difficult wind conditions.

"It's only the first day, but so far, it's very good, though it was very tricky - there's some wild results on the sheet, so I'm happy to keep my results low," said Eve McMahon. "I've done my time fighting at the back of the fleet and now I feel it's my time to be fighting at the front of the fleet - and I'm enjoying every single minute of it!"

Ewan McMahon Eighth

Her older brother Ewan had a mixed day in the men's single-person dinghy (ILCA7 class) with a 26th, which he was able to use the event discard to drop, so he counts Monday's ninth place, followed by a 13th for the second race of today.

Howth's Ewan McMahon lies eighth overall at French Olympic Week in Hyères with six more races scheduled Photo: Sailing EnergyHowth's Ewan McMahon lies eighth overall at French Olympic Week in Hyères with six more races scheduled Photo: Sailing Energy

"It's going well. I'm just keeping everything really simple, especially as it's so shifty out there with the breeze coming off the land," said Ewan McMahon. In a 70-boat fleet with a lot of guys to consider, executing the start is about 70 percent of the race, and then you switch your focus to the next leg ahead of you."

He now lies eighth overall in his event with six more races scheduled for the coming days.

Finn Lynch looking forward to Mistral conditions

Although Eve McMahon is confirmed as the nominee for Team Ireland at the Paris 2024 Olympics, Ewan McMahon lost out in the selection trials to Rio 2016 veteran Finn Lynch (National Yacht Club).

However, the Carlow sailor has been unable to find form so far this week after 55th and 46th places today saw him drop to 49th place overall in the 69-boat men's single-person dinghy event (ILCA7 class).

"I had a bad day on the water but I think we'll have three races tomorrow," said Lynch after racing ended. "We're expecting strong Mistral (wind) conditions so I'm looking forward to that.

"My speed is okay but with 70 boats on the starting line it’s all about strategy."

49er Trial

Meanwhile, Ireland has two boats contesting a selection trials to decide on the Team Ireland place for the Men's skiff event (49er class) with French Olympic Week the second of three events.

Robert Dickson (Howth YC) and Sean Waddilove (Skerries Sailing Club) competing at French Olympic Week at Hyères Photo: Sailing EnergyRobert Dickson (Howth YC) and Sean Waddilove (Skerries Sailing Club) competing at French Olympic Week at Hyères Photo: Sailing Energy

Robert Dickson (Howth YC) and Sean Waddilove (Skerries Sailing Club) had a solid day, with two top-ten places moving them into eighth overall in their event. Having held second place for most of the second race of the day, the Dublin pair were unlucky to miss a windshift and dropped back to eighth place.

"With two top tens from two races we're pretty happy," said Dickson after racing. "Some of the (training) work since Lanzarote (world championships) has paid off."

However, their rival Irish crew of Séafra Guilfoyle and Johnny Durcan (Royal Cork Yacht Club) were unlucky in their second race of the day when the mainsail halyard broke and they scored maximum points.

The Cork pair have dropped to 24th place in the 30-boat fleet, though with potentially nine more races before Saturday's medal race final, they have scope to regain a foothold in the series.

Organisers of the annual French Olympic Week (SOF) are running two regattas concurrently, double the usual number of events with the 'Last Chance Regatta' to decide the 50 remaining nation places for Paris 2024 alongside the usual World Cup of Sailing series.

Results here

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 blend of traditional and modern styles, in line with the 100th anniversary of Team Ireland's participation in the Olympics.

Laura Weber, the founder of LW Pearl, is known for her innovative and luxurious embellishments and has created a unique uniform for the Irish Olympic team. The ensemble consists of two blazers for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, a t-shirt, shoes, and trousers options. Each suit incorporates national emblems and embellishments that are specifically designed to represent the journey of Irish athletes.

Speaking about the design, Weber said, "It's an honour to design the Team Ireland Opening Ceremony wear, especially in this landmark year. I wanted to create something that reflects the rich history of Irish sport while also capturing the energy and excitement of the modern games."

The Irish Olympic team will don the bespoke uniform during the Opening Ceremony on July 26 at the Stade de France in Paris. The ceremony will mark the beginning of the 32nd Summer Olympics, and the Irish team will be among the 206 nations competing in the games.

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Ireland's Sailor of the Year Awards

Created in 1996, the Afloat Sailor of the Year Awards represent all that is praiseworthy, innovative and groundbreaking in the Irish sailing scene.

Since it began 25 years ago, the awards have recognised over 500 monthly award winners in the pages of Ireland's sailing magazine Afloat, and these have been made to both amateur and professional sailors. The first-ever Sailor of the Year was dinghy sailor Mark Lyttle, a race winner at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.

And since then it's gone on to read like a who's who of Irish sailing.

The national award is specially designed to salute the achievements of Ireland's sailing's elite. After two decades the awards has developed into a premier awards ceremony for water sports.

The overall national award will be announced each January to the person who, in the judges' opinion, achieved the most notable results in, or made the most significant contribution to, Irish sailing in the previous year.

A review of the first 25 years of the Irish Sailor the Year Awards is here

Irish Sailor of the Year Award FAQs

The Irish Sailor of the Year Awards is a scheme designed by Afloat magazine to represent all that is praiseworthy, innovative and groundbreaking in the Irish sailing scene..

The Irish Sailor of the Year Awards began in 1996.

The awards are administered by Afloat, Ireland's boating magazine.

  • 1996 Mark Lyttle
  • 1997 Tom Roche
  • 1998 Tom Fitzpatrick & David McHugh
  • 1999 Mark Mansfield
  • 2000 David Burrows
  • 2001 Maria Coleman
  • 2002 Eric Lisson
  • 2003 Noel Butler & Stephen Campion
  • 2004 Eamonn Crosbie
  • 2005 Paddy Barry & Jarlath Cunnane
  • 2006 Justin Slattery
  • 2007 Ger O'Rourke
  • 2008 Damian Foxall
  • 2009 Mark Mills
  • 2010 Anthony O'Leary
  • 2011 George Kenefick
  • 2012 Annalise Murphy
  • 2013 David Kenefick
  • 2014 Anthony O'Leary
  • 2015 Liam Shanahan
  • 2016 Annalise Murphy
  • 2017 Conor Fogerty
  • 2018 Robert Dickson & Sean Waddilove
  • 2019 Paul O'Higgins

Yes. The boating public and maritime community can have their say to help guide judges in deciding who should be crowned Ireland's Sailor of the Year by using an Afloat online poll). The judges welcome the traditional huge level of public interest in helping them make their decision but firmly retain their right to make the ultimate decision for the final choice while taking voting trends into account. By voting for your favourite nominee, you are creating additional awareness of their nomination and highlighting their success.

Anthony O'Leary of Crosshaven and Annalise Murphy of Dun Laoghaire are the only contenders to be Afloat.ie "Sailors of the Year" twice – himself in 2010 and 2014, and herself in 2012 and 2016.

In its 25 year history, there have been wins for 15, offshore or IRC achievements, nine dinghy and one designs accomplishments and one for adventure sailing.

Annually, generally in January or February of the following year.

In 2003 Her Royal Highness Princess Anne presented the Awards.

©Afloat 2020