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Latest Sailing Stories
Afloat.ie: Are You Going Round?
Round Ireland
Planning to do this year's Round Ireland Yacht Race? You could do a lot worse than listen in to how Galway's Aodhan Fitzgerald put together a team of friends to win the 2008 race. Also on Afloat.ie are navigation tips from…
Afloat.ie: Kinsale is La Solitaire du Figaro 2010 Port
Figaro
The 2010 edition of La Solitaire du Figaro will stop in Kinsale next August as part of the 2010 edition of the race. The race will cover 1,717 nautical miles between ports both old and new to the race.  There…
Afloat.ie: Sailing Backs Round Ireland
Round Ireland
Round Ireland 2010 Launch: As well as the support of ICRA, ISORA and SCORA (story here) the Round Ireland 2010 race got further backing at its launch last night in Wicklow town from both the Irish Sailing Association and Britain's…
Afloat.ie: Wicklow Appeal for Race Sponsor
Round Ireland
Round Ireland 2010 Launch: Last night Wicklow Commodore Charlie Kavanagh delivered a strong message to both competitors and potential sponsors to get involved early with next year's round Ireland. We reproduce his full speech over the fold: In 1979, our…
Afloat.ie: 16 Sign Up for Round Ireland 2010
Round Ireland
Sixteen entries are already signed up for next year's Round Ireland Race, the unprecedented level of interest is an indication that next year's 30th Anniversary event will be a bumper affair. Wicklow Sailing Club launched the 2010 race last night…
Afloat.ie: Foxall Joins Groupama for Next Race Round the World
Volvo Ocean Race
Kerry's Damian Foxall has been signed-up by French skipper Franck Cammas for the 2011-’12 edition of the round the world Volvo Ocean Race. David Branigan of The Irish Times breaks the news this morning. It follows the recent announcement of…
Olympics 2012
Irish sailing and boating fans will be delighted to hear that Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern have attained an excellent 3rd place in the Australian 49er National Championships. The racing was over four days and the boys were consistent, in…
Afloat.ie: Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta Broadcast on Sky Sports
Volvo Regatta
Highlights of the Summer's Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta are to be broadcast on Sky Sports TV later this month. The country's biggest regatta will be the focus of a 30-minute documentary slot in the Watersports World Series to be aired…
Afloat.ie: Round Ireland 2010 Gets Fresh Support
Round Ireland
Two of the country's biggest cruiser associations are leading the support for this year's Round Ireland race in an effort to make the 30th anniversary edition, a circumnavigation to remember. The Irish Cruiser Racer Association is to present a new…
Afloat.ie: RStGYC SB3 Fleet Update
Racing
The Royal St George Laser SB3 fleet of 18 boats has enjoyed a hectic season on Dublin Bay. There were 33 boats entered for DBSC racing and a great variety of events to augment the weekly stuff. This was the…
Afloat ie: Cork Week Addresses Costs
Cork Week
In Cork Week's Notice of Race, Mike McCarthy, Admiral of the Royal Cork Yacht Club gives an address which outlines the response to feedback given to the Club about the last event. Cork Week 2010 will have significant cost reductions…
Afloat.ie: Cork Resumes Race after Start Day Crash
Clipper Race
The Irish entry in the Clipper 09-10 Round the World Yacht Race has set sail from Cape Town following the start day crash that forced her to return to port for repairs. Cork, Ireland has been back in port since…
Afloat.ie: Work Underway to Repair Cork
Clipper Race
Following Sunday’s collision between Cork and Hull & Humber, at the start of Race 4 of the Clipper 09-10 Round the World Yacht Race, work is now well underway on repairs to both boats. Yesterday the boat building team working…
Afloat.ie: ISORA Plan Three Offshores Before Round Ireland
Racing
There will be three offshore races before this year's Round Ireland race, an initiative aimed at driving numbers up for the classic biennial fixutre but also at encouraging boats out of Dublin Bay to try offshore sailing. There is a…
Afloat.ie: Cork in Dramatic Collision
Clipper Race
A dramatic start to Race 4 of Clipper 09-10 round the world yacht race in Cape Town saw eight of the boats cross the start line for the 4,700-mile race to Geraldton, Western Australia, while a collision between Cork, Ireland…
Afloat.ie: Kinetic Named Boat of the Year
ICRA
Class two sailing champion Kinetic has won ICRA's Boat of the year award. The decision against a short-list of other campaigns was announced on Sunday at the ICRA conference in Kilkenny. The Corby 25 yacht owned by John Murphy and…

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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