Menu

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

In association with ISA Logo Irish Sailing

afloat sailing header

Latest Sailing Stories
SCORA prizewinners with new Commodore Johanna Murphy
A large attendance of about 40 sailors at the SCORA AGM was swelled by a good contingent from Waterford Harbour Sailing Club who travelled to Crosshaven despite the bad weather writes Bob Bateman. The Royal Cork Yacht Club (RCYC) hosted meeting on…
Susie Goodall arriving at the Hobart Golden Globe Race film stop last month
British yachtswoman Susie Goodall was pitchpoled and dismasted in the Southern Ocean some 2,000 miles west of Cape Horn today. A distress signal was first picked up from her yacht by Falmouth Coastguard at 11:00 UTC, who then alerted Race…
Espey Leads RS400 Frostie Series at RNIYC
The RS400 crews gathered in the boatyard, scratching their heads considering if it was even worthwhile bothering to take the covers off as there wasn’t a breath writes Bob Hastings. The 420s were out drifting about and it looked like…
Darryl Hughes of Maybird with Anne-Marie Ryan, wife of the ISORA Chairman Peter Ryan, at the presentation of the historic Penmaen Plate in the National YC
The Irish Sea Offshore Racing Association has a long and varied history extending back to the 1930s writes W M Nixon. For although ISORA, as we know it today, was inaugurated as recently as 1972, it is directly descended from…
Johanna Murphy, Commodore of SCORA
Hello and welcome to my weekly Podcast …. Tom MacSweeney here …. “I intend to promote sailing in general and also to promote coastal offshore racing.” That was the declaration of Johanna Murphy from the Great Island Sailing Club in…
Sean O'Regan's Dehler 31 Vespucci reaching downwind in the Turkey Shoot Series on Dublin Bay
Sean O'Regan's Dehler 31 Vespucci has jumped into the overall lead of the Citroen South Dublin Turkey Shoot Series after five races sailed at the Royal Irish Yacht Club hosted event. The Dehler has broken the stranglehold of the J109…
Promoted
More and more centres in and outside of France choose the RS CAT14 as the pathway Catamaran class. This boat takes the enjoyment and handling associated with beach cats to a new level.
Irish RS agent Kenny Rumball will be at the Paris Boat Show from the 8-16 December 2018 to showcase the RS Zest, RS CAT14 and RS21 as well as many French bestsellers like the RS Feva, RS Quest and the…
Promoted
'Outrajeous' New J109 Arrives into Dublin
Continuing their 2018 development programme UK Sailmakers Ireland are working with John Murphy and Richard Colwell’s new J109 which arrived into Howth last month. After successful development and testing of the ‘JX’ headsail design on Dublin Bay the UK Sailmakers…
Motoring into Kingston Harbour escorted by Jamaican Coastguard, L-R is Conor Clarke (IRL), David Allen (JAM), Prof O'Connell (North Sails Ireland) and Michael Browne (NI)
Two years to the day that Ireland's Embarr team won the Melges 24 Worlds in Miami, Conor Clarke and Maurice 'Prof' O'Connell were back on the water for the 380–mile Round Jamaica Race on Mark Shield's Beneteau 35s5 "Breakaway". Mark is…
Fionn Lyden negotiates a wave in his home port of Baltimore
There was some high octane Finn dinghy sailing off Baltimore Harbour last week when Tokyo 2020 trialists Fionn Lyden, Oisin McClelland and visiting Finn sailors brought their boats to West Cork in the hope of some big wave experience. As…
Ronan Wallace leads Dave Quinn in Race one of the Howth Laser Frostbites, 2nd December
The mild Autumn / Winter shows no sign of letting up, with another nice morning for the Howth Lasers again this week. Illness, injury and possibly some early Christmas celebrations depleted the fleet this week, but the competition was still…
The start of the 2017 D2D race. Changes to the 2019race means navigators and skippers can plot courses to hug the coastline, and to go inside Islands and lighthouses as part of their strategy"
The 2019 Volvo Dun Laoghaire to Dingle “D2D” Race will start from the National Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire on Wednesday, June 12th 2019. The 2019 edition of D2D brings with it some important and exciting changes while retaining the…
Irish Fireballers Mark the Close of the Season with Prizegiving Dinner
The Irish Fireball Class Association marked the close of the summer season with their annual prize-giving dinner at the National Yacht Club on Friday 30th November. There was a good turnout for the dinner with a combination of young and…
DMYC Frostbite Co-ordinator, Neil Colin presides over today’s prize-giving
The fifth round of the DMYC-hosted Frostbites provided the fleet with the most challenging conditions yet and even then what was forecast didn’t really materialise. On Friday at the Fireball dinner and prize-giving the speculation was that we mightn’t get…
On the second round of the course, the fleet negotiate no.7 buoy
With one race left to sail, Kieran Collins's Olson 30 Coracle IV of the host club has moved into the overall lead of the O'Leary Insurances sponsored  Royal Cork Yacht Club League in Cork Harbour writes Bob Bateman. After five races…
Mojito co-skippers Vicky Cox and Peter Dunlop receiving the Wolf’s Head Trophy from Peter Ryan of ISORA at the annual awards ceremony in the National YC in November
The annual November awards ceremony of the Irish Sea Offshore Racing Association is a highlight of sailing’s social calendar, a convivial gathering of friendly rivalry from both sides of the Irish Sea. But though 2018’s was staged with the usual…

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]

Who is Your Sailor of the Year 2018?
Total Votes:
First Vote:
Last Vote:

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

DBSC
Howth Yacht Club
Kinsale Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club
Royal Saint George Yacht Club

Featured Brokers

mgm sidebutton

Featured Associations

ISA sidebutton
ICRA
isora sidebutton

Featured Events

tokyo sidebutton
sovscup sidebutton
vdlr sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
viking sidebutton

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Blogs

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

Please show your support for Afloat by donating