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Latest Sailing Stories
Olympic Council of Ireland Appoints New CEO
Tokyo 2020
The Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) has announced Peter Sherrard as its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO), effective May 2018. Sherrard joins the OCI from the Football Association of Ireland where he is Operations Director with responsibility for International Team…
So what else would you be doing in France on a winter’s day but launching a boat? The new 12ft cat ready to go after being built by Skol ar Mor
Historic Boats
On America’s East Coast around Cape Cod, there’s plenty of sea. But as the locals say, it tends to be thin – sometimes very thin - in the places where you might want to go sailing writes W M Nixon.…
Equator Crossings & Scoring Gate Decisions For Clipper Race Fleet
Clipper Race
#ClipperRace - It’s still tight at the top on Day 8 of Race 7: The Forever Tropical Paradise Race, with only seven nautical miles separating the lead between the top three teams Qingdao, Dare to Lead and Sanya Serenity Coast.…
Team AkzoNobel at the Leg 6 start
Volvo Ocean Race
#VOR - Skipper Simeon Tienpont’s Team AkzoNobel led the Volvo Ocean Race fleet away from the Hong Kong start line on Monday morning as Leg 6 got underway. Racing started in a light 8-10 knot easterly with AkzoNobel, SHK/Scallywag and…
Matt McGovern (right) and Ryan Seaton in their 49er skiff
Tokyo 2020
Two time Sailing Olympian Matt McGovern (34) from Belfast Lough has abandoned plans for his third sailing Olympics at Tokyo 2020 and announced his retirement. Teamed with Carrickfergus helmsman Ryan Seaton for London and Rio, the pair became Ireland’s most…
Tom Dolan in his Pogo 3 IRL 910, in which at sixth overall in November 2017, he was the highest-placed Irish sailor ever in the biennial Mini-Transat. He has now moved up to the Figaro Solo, and this week in training with the Figaro 2 in Lorient, he recorded his first win.
Solo Sailing
Tom Dolan, who last November became the highest-placed Irish sailor ever in the gruelling Mini-Transat, will be giving club talks in Dublin and Dun Laoghaire next week of his adventures writes W M Nixon. It’s quite a story, the remarkable…
Simon McGibney has been appointed the new manager at Kilrush Marina in Co. Clare
Irish Marinas
West coast sailor Simon McGibney, originally from Tarbert in Co. Kerry has been appointed the new manager at Kilrush Marina in Co. Clare. As Afloat.ie reported at the time, the marina came under new ownership in 2014 and has undergone…
British Olympic Sailing trialist Saskia Tidey (left) has been awarded RIYC's 'Helm/Boat of the Year Award' by her Dun Laoghaire club
Royal Irish Yacht Club
The Royal Irish Yacht Club awarded British Olympic Sailing trialist Saskia Tidey its 'Helm/Boat of the Year Award' at its recent RIYC Sailing Awards that took place in the Dun Laoghaire Club on Saturday, 27th January 2018. The Dun Laoghaire sailor…
The Vestas yacht being shipped straight to Auckland for repairs ahead of rejoining for Leg 7
Volvo Ocean Race
#VOR - Is the Volvo Ocean Race suffering from a credibility gap? That’s the view from an editorial on US website Sailing Illustrated, which takes the event to task over lack of information regarding Vestas 11th Hour Racing’s absence from…
In Ireland, Irish Sailing says they have have had 50 IRC revalidation applications plus four trial cert applications so far this season.
RORC
The International Rating Certificate (IRC) has made a flying start to 2018 with increased numbers of rating applications in the first month of the year and nearly 1000 certificates issued in January. RORC says 'This is very positive for IRC…
The 1720 Optique has taken an early lead in DBSC's Spring Chicken Series on Dublin Bay. Results are downloadable below
DBSC
Two 1720s are being chased by an SB20 for the overall lead aftter the first race of the Rathfarnham Ford DBSC Spring Chicken Series on Dublin Bay on Sunday.   1720 Optique leads sistership Wolfe with Kenny Rumball's SB20 in third…
The Commodore of ICRA Simon McGibney has called for an emergency meeting of the body that governs cruiser–racer activities
Tom MacSweeney
“These are difficult times for the Association. While robust debate is welcome and encouraged, respect for all must remain in all of our dealings with each other,” the Commodore of the Irish Cruiser Racing Association, Simon McGibney, has said, in…
With the re-building of Saoirse now under way in Oldcourt, for the time being the easygoing open-house atmosphere which prevailed during the restoration of Ilen – as seen here in 2011 – has been put aside as the serious new project is set firmly in place. Photo shows (left to right) Leo McDermot, Nick Cotter, Pierce Ryan, Brendan Lennox, Fachtna O’Sullivan, and David Vurdett, with yard cat Joe keeping a wary eye on Jasper the dog.
Historic Boats
West Cork may have the image of an easy-going paradise where life proceeds at a leisurely pace writes W M Nixon. And maybe that is indeed the case in summer, when there are more people around determined to keep things…
The Waterfront Award for a significant contribution to the sport went to the long serving Honorary Secretary of Dublin Bay Sailing Club, Donal O' Sullivan.
RStGYC
The Royal St. George Yacht Club saluted its top performers at its Dun Laoghaire Harbour clubhouse on Saturday. The Black Tie gala dinner recognised some outstanding sailing exploits from youth to offshore as well as cruising and team racing achievements in…
The Sailor of the Year Award will be made this Friday
ISA
There's a last chance to register for the Afloat.ie and Volvo Irish Sailing Awards, taking place at 6.30pm at the RDS Concert Hall, Dublin, this Friday 9 February that will see the presentation of the Afloat.ie Sailor of the Year…
CP Lubeck, fell overboard and was struck by the rudder foil of his Nacra 17 while racing in New Zealand yesterday. 
Tokyo 2020
A Danish crew man, CP Lubeck, fell overboard and was struck by the rudder foil of his Nacra 17 while racing in New Zealand yesterday.  The injury required surgery. Lubeck is recovering well and will be back in action soon,…

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]

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W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
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