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Latest Sailing Stories
30 Entries for ICRA Nats
30 entries have already been received for the Liebherr Cruiser Nationals sailing in Dun Laoghaire from May 21st to 23rd and this number is expected to grow over the next week as the discounted entry fee deadline of 31st March…
Route to Galway nearly complete
The route for the longest trip to Galway is nearly complete, with just one gap remaining in the Volvo Ocean Race itinerary. The pic (over the fold) shows that with the announcement of a Miami stopover, only one pacific gap…
Stars to Gather in the Solent
The RORC Easter Challenge is the first inshore regatta of a busy season of racing with the Royal Ocean Racing Club. A strong line up will be mixing it up on tight Solent courses over the Easter weekend. Seven races…
Dinner and dance at the RCYC
Louay Habib first went to Cork Week in 1990, he had his stag party there in 2004 where he picked up the nickname ‘coiler’. He will be there again in 2010, writing the daily reports for the RCYC. “Sailing Logic…
Team Ireland Lines Out in Spain
A small and youthful Irish team is among 680 boats, 1,000 sailors and 40 nations for the Trofeo SAR Princesa Sofía. In this second year of the ISAF Sailing World Cup, the Sofía Mapfre opens the sailing season in Europe…
Seaton and McGovern Take Black Flag in Opening Race
A black flag was not the most auspicious start to Princesa Sofia Mapfre trophy. Northern Ireland's Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern bounced back in their second race though with an eighth place leaving them 41st. Low and instable wind on…
Good Sign for Gemini
The O’Regan, Salter and Minihan combination on Gemini captured the overall trophy yesterday in the Frank Godsell sponsored March League 2010 at Kinsale Yacht Club writes John Cooley. 16 boats came to the start line and with all to play…
UCD Win Scottish University Champions
University College Dublin took first place at the Scottish University Championships, adding an overseas victory to the sailing club’s achievements this season. The Scottish University Sailing Association (SUSA) Championships, hosted by University of Strathclyde Sailing Club, took place last weekend…
Route to Galway is complete
The final gap in the Volvo Ocean Race route was plugged overnight, with Auckland, the City of Sails, announced as the second Pacific stopover. The fleet will sail from Sanya in China to Auckland before the leg around Cape Horn…
Cork Clipper Skipper to the Rescue
Newly appointed Cork Clipper round the world yacht race Skipper, Hannah Jenner, will earn her 2010 sea legs earlier than expected. The volcanic disruption of the air space has left Qingdao’s Skipper Chris Stanmore-Major stranded in the UK after he…
O'Leary and Milne are Sailors of the Month for March
Peter O’Leary and Stephen Milne are the Afloat.ie/Irish Independent “Sailors of the Month” for March after their superb performance to place second overall in the Olympic Star Class Bacardi Cup series against an international fleet of 84 boats in Florida.…
Irish lead RORC fleets overnight
Anthony O'Leary's Ker 39 Antix has slipped into second place at the RORC Red Funnel Easter Challenge in the Solent, after sharing the IRC Zero lead overnight. Niklas Zennstrom's Farr 45 Ran took first blood in Sunday morning's racing to…
Jump Juice Wins on the Solent
Racing in IRC One, Conor Phelan’s Ker 37, Jump Juice, has won the weekend's Easter's Red Funnel Challenge on the Solent. Anthony O'Leary's Antix, a Ker 39, was second in IRC Zero. In spite of the fact that Christopher Opielok’s…
CityJet North & East Coast Club Championships is Announced
The challenge to find the top club racing team on the North & East Coasts is on, with the news that Howth Yacht Club is to host the inaugural CityJet North & East Coast Club Championships on April 24/25 on…
ICRA Entry Approaches 100
ICRA are reporting its national sailing championships entry is approaching the 100-mark nearly two months out from the event, the first big regatta of the sailing season. The Liebherr Cruiser Nationals to be held in Dun Laoghaire from May from…
Wicklow duo for Round Ireland
Brian Flahive and Bryan Byrne are the latest sailing pairing to announce their intention to compete in the 2010 Round Ireland, entering the double-handed class in a borrowed GibSea 37. The pair are racing to raise funds for the National…

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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