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Round Ireland Sailors - We Want to Hear Your Voices
Here at Afloat.ie we want to be able to connect Round Ireland sailors with the sailing community even while they're racing around Ireland (and all her rocks and islands). So we've set up a simple way for any competitor with…
Cork Clipper Boat Leaves for Transatlantic Leg
The Irish entry in the Clipper Round the World Race, Cork, leaves Cape Breton Island in Newfoundland today to get a head start on the fleet as it heads across the Atlantic to Kinsale and Cork. The new Cork Clipper…
Cote Tops Quarter Ton Cup Fleet
Sun, wind, great competitors and a tense finish that went right down to the closing seconds of the final race made the final day of the Coutts Quarter Ton Cup 2010 an absolute stunner. After nine races in conditions, off…
Round Ireland Yacht to be Blessed
An entry in the Round Ireland Yacht Race will be blessed in an interdenominational ceremony in Dun Laoghaire Harbour on Friday, prior to departing for the race. The blessing of boats going to sea is an Irish tradition practiced all…
Irish Trio Head for UK IRC Championships
The RORC UK IRC National Championship includes a trio of Irish boats that adds spice to an event that alos draws competitors from Belgium, France, Great Britain, Hong Kong and the Netherlands. Competing on tight Solent courses there is no…
Round the World Yachts Will Challenge for Round Ireland Title
The biggest boat in Sunday's Round Ireland Yacht Race has sailed between the Arctic and Antarctic. It  is Celtic Spirit of Fastnet, a sturdy 72-foot Cruiser/Racer. Its skipper Michael Holland became Afloat's first Sailor of the Month in 2008 after he voyaged…
Weather Forecast: Round Ireland Will Get off to 'Gentle Start'
Although it is still five days before the start the 3oth anniversary race looks like it is going to get off to a gentle start. Specialist wind forecaster Mike Broughton for the Irish Commodores Cup team says Sunday's noon start…
Tiger Roars into Quarter Ton Cup Top Ten
The team on board Tiger have leapt into the top ten overnight with a string of top ten results at the Coutts Quarter Ton Cup in the Solent. The Cork-based boat counted a 4-5-14-6 scoreline in the last four races…
'Goodness Gracious' Takes Light Air Win on Dublin Bay
Louise McKenna's Goodness Gracious made the best of tricky light airs on Dublin Bay this evening to win the Dublin Bay Sailing Club Tuesday night dinghy race from Neil Colin's Elevation. Third was Marie Barry's Reality Check. It was the…
37 Yachts Make up Round Ireland 2010 Entry
The entries for the 2010 Round Ireland Yacht Race are assembling. As predicted by race organiser Dennis Noonan 37 boats will make the line inWicklow on Sunday for the 30th anniversary race. We list the entrants below and wish them…
Cavatina Returns for Chance of Third Win in Round Ireland Yacht Race
Royal Cork yacht Cavatina (Eric Lisson), twice overall winners of the Round Ireland race is going round again in a bid top be the the first boat to win Ireland's classic offshore race three times. The news is one of…
Rosslare Europort to Sponsor Line Honours Challenger
Rosslare Europort is to sponsor the largest challenger in the Round Ireland Yacht Race, an Open 60 that will have a good chance of taking line honours. The boat, chartered by a team of Dun Laoghaire sailors headed up by…
Minis Near Fastnet Rock
The remaining Minis in the Mini Fastnet Race are approaching the Fastnet Rock this morning, with a line of six boats all within four miles of one another at the head of the fleet in a dying breeze. Upwards of…
Brits Dominate Coutts Quarter Ton Cup
Irish crews have yet to deliver at the Coutts Quarter Ton Cup taking place at the Royal Corinthian Yacht Club this week. After one day's racing, top Irish boat is the O'Neill/Kingston/Kenefick team aboard Tiger, lying in 14th place in…
Top Class Entry Expected for Etchell's Worlds at Howth YC
A fleet of around 50 boats, including some of the world’s top sailors and Olympic medallists, are expected for the Etchells World Championships, it was announced at a Reception in Howth Yacht Club attended by the Minister for Tourism, Sport…
Butler and McCarthy Lead Fireball Sailors to East Down Venue
Noel Butler and Shane McCarthy lead the Irish Fireball dinghy sailing rankings after success in the opening event of the season in Killaloe in the last weekend of May. The next event on the regatta circuit is the Ulster championships, hosted…

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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Featured Blogs

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