Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

In association with ISA Logo Irish Sailing

afloat sailing header

Latest Sailing Stories
DBSC Committee Boat Freebird will be on station for the first of the six races of the Rathfarnham Ford Spring Chicken Series that gets underway on Sunday, February 4th
DBSC
Dublin Bay Sailing Club has launched its first event of 2018 with the continuing sponsorship of the DBSC Spring Chicken Series by Rathfarnham Ford. A series of six races to be held on Sunday mornings organised by Dublin Bay Sailing…
Royal Cork's Cian Byrne roll tacking in the changeable and gusty conditions of the MBSC Saturday Series sailed in Cork Harbour
Laser
Daragh O'Sullivan continues to lead the 16–boat Monkstown Bay Sailing Club Laser dinghy League in Cork Harbour by a margin of two points from local Chris Bateman after nine races and two discards. Charles Dwyer is third. Overall results are downloadable…
Fishing nets caught around a propellor. Scroll down for vidoe
Cruising
The Cruising Association (CA) has just released a video highlighting the dangers of entanglement with lobster pots as part of its campaign for better marking of static fishing gear. Afloat.ie has previously highlighted the perils of unmarked pots. On March…
Time Penalty For Conall Morrison’s Clipper Race Boat After Race 6 Exclusion Zone Breach
Clipper Race
#ClipperRace - Conall Morrison’s HotelPlanner.com has retrospectively been given a six-hour time penalty for breaching the two-nautical-mile exclusion zone as stated in the Clipper Race course instructions for Race 6. At 11.30am Irish time/UTC on Tuesday 16 January, HotelPlanner.com breached…
Fisherman Dies After Collision With Volvo Ocean Race Yacht Off Hong Kong
Volvo Ocean Race
#VOR - A collision overnight between Volvo Ocean Race vessel Vestas 11th Hour Racing and a fishing boat off Hong Kong has resulted in the death of a fisherman. The incident occurred approximately 30 miles from the finish of Leg…
Scallywag arrives in Hong Kong after 18 days of racing from Melbourne
Volvo Ocean Race
#VOR - Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag have won Leg 4 of the Volvo Ocean Race, leading the fleet into their home port of Hong Kong. It’s a historic win for skipper David Witt and his team who had to overcome…
A Cork Harbour One Design heading seaward in style. This 1895-96 William Fife design is one of many vintage One-Designs still sailing in Ireland which are of special interest to international boat-building schools
W M Nixon
The traditional and classic wooden boat-building movement is gaining momentum in many parts of the world. It can be part of educational and training schemes which provide skills and purpose in life, usually for young people but also for older…
 Johnny Swan with Harmony from Howth is one of the super early bird entries for Cork Week
Cork Week
Cork Week has announced the lucky 10% of Super Early Bird entries that will receive a full refund on their entry fee for Volvo Cork Week, which will take place in the Royal Cork Yacht Club from the 16th to…
Norbert 'Nobby' Reilly submitted his letter of resignation to ICRA on Thursday 18 January
ICRA
#ICRA - Norbert 'Nobby' Reilly has resigned from the Irish Cruiser Racing Association (ICRA) over disagreements with its direction in the last 12 months. In his resignation letter submitted yesterday (Thursday 18 January), the Howth Yacht Club stalwart and former…
Participants in the MBSC Laser league. The fleet has been joined by some of Cork’s leading dinghy sailors. They include John Durcan, 49er sailor Cian Byrne and Nick Walsh, 2017 National 18ft British and Irish Championships winner.
Laser
The competitive instinct of Laser sailors is tightening the battle for honours in the Winter League in Cork Harbour being run by Monkstown Bay Sailing Club. The fleet has been joined by some of Cork’s leading dinghy sailors. They include…
Racing to Hong Kong on board Dongfeng yesterday
Volvo Ocean Race
#VOR - Volvo Ocean Race fans around the world were on the edges of their seats on Thursday (18 January) as Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag’s emergence from Stealth Mode corresponded with two of their closest rivals disappearing from the tracker.…
Visit Seattle crosses the finish line
Clipper Race
#ClipperRace - After one of the most challenging races so far in the 2017-18 Clipper Race, Visit Seattle held off a strong challenge from three other teams to chalk up a thrilling maiden victory in Race 6: The Wondrous Whitsundays…
Man alone – Tom Dolan racing the Atlantic. He’ll be telling all in Westport on January 25th
Solo Sailing
On Thursday January 25th, at 19:30hrs, Mayo Sailing Club will be hosting a public presentation in the Westport Coast Hotel’s Atlantic Suite by Mini-Transat sailor Tom Dolan, and the admission of just €2 includes tea, coffee and biscuits. Originating on…
Gordon Ingate’s Robert Clark-designed classic Caprice of Huon slicing through Cowes Roads to win the Britannia Cup in Cowes Week 1965, when she also won the New York Yacht Club Cup, and the RORC Channel Race overall.
Dragon
When Ireland’s senior Dragon sailor Don Street (87) of Glandore bids us to pay attention, we always do, as Don’s experience in many areas of sailing is unrivalled writes W M Nixon. But when Don suggests we all sit up…
Annalise has played an ambassador role for sailing since her win. Here she is back sailing on Dublin Bay after her medal win
Annalise Murphy
With every great win comes a ripple effect. Annalise Murphy’s silver medal in sailing at the Rio Olympics in 2016 was good news for the country, for sport, and the sailing community in general. But how has the bounce been…
Spindrift has been dismasted and is under tow back to port this evening. The crew is safe and sound
Offshore
At about 1600h (CET) today, Monday 15 January 2018, Spindrift 2 was sailing just off Point St Matthieu and Camaret in Brittany on her way to the start line of the Jules Verne Trophy, when she dismasted. At the time…

How to sail, sailing clubs and sailing boats plus news on the wide range of sailing events on Irish waters forms the backbone of Afloat's sailing coverage.

We aim to encompass the widest range of activities undertaken on Irish lakes, rivers and coastal waters. This page describes those sailing activites in more detail and provides links and breakdowns of what you can expect from our sailing pages. We aim to bring jargon free reports separated in to popular categories to promote the sport of sailing in Ireland.

The packed 2013 sailing season sees the usual regular summer leagues and there are regular weekly race reports from Dublin Bay Sailing Club, Howth and Cork Harbour on Afloat.ie. This season and last also featured an array of top class events coming to these shores. Each year there is ICRA's Cruiser Nationals starts and every other year the Round Ireland Yacht Race starts and ends in Wicklow and all this action before July. Crosshaven's Cork Week kicks off on in early July every other year. in 2012 Ireland hosted some big international events too,  the ISAF Youth Worlds in Dun Laoghaire and in August the Tall Ships Race sailed into Dublin on its final leg. In that year the Dragon Gold Cup set sail in Kinsale in too.

2013 is also packed with Kinsale hosting the IFDS diabled world sailing championships in Kinsale and the same port is also hosting the Sovereign's Cup. The action moves to the east coast in July with the staging of the country's biggest regatta, the Volvo Dun Laoghaire regatta from July 11.

Our coverage though is not restricted to the Republic of Ireland but encompasses Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and the Irish Sea area too. In this section you'll find information on the Irish Sailing Association and Irish sailors. There's sailing reports on regattas, racing, training, cruising, dinghies and keelboat classes, windsurfers, disabled sailing, sailing cruisers, Olympic sailing and Tall Ships sections plus youth sailing, match racing and team racing coverage too.

Sailing Club News

There is a network of over 70 sailing clubs in Ireland and we invite all clubs to submit details of their activities for inclusion in our daily website updates. There are dedicated sections given over to the big Irish clubs such as  the waterfront clubs in Dun Laoghaire; Dublin Bay Sailing Club, the Royal Saint George Yacht Club,  the Royal Irish Yacht Club and the National Yacht Club. In Munster we regularly feature the work of Kinsale Yacht Club and Royal Cork Yacht Club in Crosshaven.  Abroad Irish sailors compete in Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC) racing in the UK and this club is covered too. Click here for Afloat's full list of sailing club information. We are keen to increase our coverage on the network of clubs from around the coast so if you would like to send us news and views of a local interest please let us have it by sending an email to [email protected]

Sailing Boats and Classes

Over 20 active dinghy and one design classes race in Irish waters and fleet sizes range from just a dozen or so right up to over 100 boats in the case of some of the biggest classes such as the Laser or Optimist dinghies for national and regional championships. Afloat has dedicated pages for each class: Dragons, Etchells, Fireball, Flying Fifteen, GP14, J24's, J80's, Laser, Sigma 33, RS Sailing, Star, Squibs, TopperMirror, Mermaids, National 18, Optimist, Puppeteers, SB3's, and Wayfarers. For more resources on Irish classes go to our dedicated sailing classes page.

The big boat scene represents up to 60% of the sail boat racing in these waters and Afloat carries updates from the Irish Cruiser Racer Association (ICRA), the body responsible for administering cruiser racing in Ireland and the popular annual ICRA National Championships. In 2010 an Irish team won the RORC Commodore's Cup putting Irish cruiser racing at an all time high. Popular cruiser fleets in Ireland are raced right around the coast but naturally the biggest fleets are in the biggest sailing centres in Cork Harbour and Dublin Bay. Cruisers race from a modest 20 feet or so right up to 50'. Racing is typically divided in to Cruisers Zero, Cruisers One, Cruisers Two, Cruisers Three and Cruisers Four. A current trend over the past few seasons has been the introduction of a White Sail division that is attracting big fleets.

Traditionally sailing in northern Europe and Ireland used to occur only in some months but now thanks to the advent of a network of marinas around the coast (and some would say milder winters) there are a number of popular winter leagues running right over the Christmas and winter periods.

Sailing Events

Punching well above its weight Irish sailing has staged some of the world's top events including the Volvo Ocean Race Galway Stopover, Tall Ships visits as well as dozens of class world and European Championships including the Laser Worlds, the Fireball Worlds in both Dun Laoghaire and Sligo.

Some of these events are no longer pure sailing regattas and have become major public maritime festivals some are the biggest of all public staged events. In the past few seasons Ireland has hosted events such as La Solitaire du Figaro and the ISAF Dublin Bay 2012 Youth Worlds.

There is a lively domestic racing scene for both inshore and offshore sailing. A national sailing calendar of summer fixtures is published annually and it includes old favorites such as Sovereign's Cup, Calves Week, Dun Laoghaire to Dingle, All Ireland Sailing Championships as well as new events with international appeal such as the Round Britain and Ireland Race and the Clipper Round the World Race, both of which have visited Ireland.

The bulk of the work on running events though is carried out by the network of sailing clubs around the coast and this is mostly a voluntary effort by people committed to the sport of sailing. For example Wicklow Sailing Club's Round Ireland yacht race run in association with the Royal Ocean Racing Club has been operating for over 30 years. Similarly the international Cork Week regatta has attracted over 500 boats in past editions and has also been running for over 30 years.  In recent years Dublin Bay has revived its own regatta called Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta and can claim to be the country's biggest event with over 550 boats entered in 2009.

On the international stage Afloat carries news of Irish and UK interest on Olympics 2012, Sydney to Hobart, Volvo Ocean Race, Cowes Week and the Fastnet Race.

We're always aiming to build on our sailing content. We're keen to build on areas such as online guides on learning to sail in Irish sailing schools, navigation and sailing holidays. If you have ideas for our pages we'd love to hear from you. Please email us at [email protected]

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

DBSC
Howth Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club

Featured Associations

ISA sidebutton
ICRA
isora sidebutton

Featured Events

corkweek sidebutton
tokyo sidebutton
roundireland sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

chmarine sidebutton
viking sidebutton

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
sellingboat sidebutton

Please show your support for Afloat by donating