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Latest Sailing Stories
Annalise Murphy and Katie Tingle sailing at their Vilamoura base in Portugal
Just crowned Irish Sailors of the Year, Robert Dickson and Robert Waddilove were back on the water in Portugal finishing 23rd in a fleet of 53 at the second round of the Portugal Grand Prix in Vilamoura. Top Irish 49er…
Maserati Blasting round the course - Multi 70 Maserati
Maserati Multi 70 skippered by Giovanni Soldini (ITA) crossed the finish line of the RORC Caribbean 600 at 20:49:00 AST on Tuesday 19 February 2019 in an elapsed time of 1 day, 06 hours 49 minutes and 00 seconds, taking…
A superb start to the 2019 RORC Caribbean 600 in Antigua saw 76 boats from over 20 countries in the 600 nautical mile non-stop race. Bella Mente, Wizard and Caro in IRC Zero
The 2019 RORC Caribbean 600 kicked off in spectacular conditions off the south coast of Antigua with the magnificent fleet starting the 600–mile non-stop offshore race in bright sunshine, full-on gusting tradewinds and two-metre high waves. The 11th edition of…
The eternally youthful Curly Morris
Curly Morris of East Antrim Boat Club in Larne has sailed in a number of boats over a long period, but the GP 14 has always been the love of his life writes W M Nixon. And in the GP…
Former 49er sailor Matt McGovern
Belfast Lough former 49er sailor Matt McGovern will be at East Antrim Boat Club this Wednesday (20th) from 7:30 pm for a talk on performance sailing. As well as relaying the ups and downs of his journeys to the London and…
Australia SailGP Team celebrate their win in the home water’s of Sydney Harbour on the first stop of the inaugural race series
More than 20,000 people turned to for the inaugural SailGP event on Sydney Harbour this past weekend, with the home team Australia — helmed by local hero Tom Slingsby — beating Japan in the final to clinch the first victory…
Wind Shifts Pay Dividends at Howth Yacht Club Laser Dinghy League (Video Here!)
What a change a week makes! There was a certain sceptical air in the Howth Yacht Club Laser dinghy pen as sailors took off coats and searched their bags for baseball caps in very mild and sunny conditions. The breeze…
Lasers reach a weather mark in yesterday's in-harbour DMYC Frostbites at Dun Laoghaire
From the previous Friday morning, the XCWeather website had been consistent in its forecast for Sunday afternoon at 14:00, winds of the order of 17/18 knots with gusts to 28/30 knots from a direction of south or south of south-west.…
Rocco Wright sailing in Palamós
It was a strong seventh-place finish overall for Howth Yacht Club’s Rocco Wright at the International Palamós Optimist Trophy, which concluded yesterday (Sunday 17 February) on Spain’s Costa Brava. The youngster remained in medal contention among a 110-boat gold fleet…
Gregor McGuckin pictured shortly after the start of the Golden Globe Race last July. His yacht is now the subject of a salvage attempt off the coast of Australia.
Gregor McGuckin's Yellow Brick tracker onboard his abandoned Hanley Endurance Golden Globe yacht is running in stealth mode to stop others from trying to salvage the boat according to Race Headquarters. While McGuckin has returned safely to Ireland a salvage…
Summertime at Lough Ree Yacht Club at Ballyglass near Athlone, hospitable hosts for Ireland’s varied cruising interests on Saturday
Lough Ree Yacht Club at Ballyglass, where the spacious waters of the great Shannon lake start to narrow back to river size for the passage south through Athlone, is already well into planning for its Quarter Millennium in 2020. Founded…
GP14s are heading for Cullaun Lake in May
2019 will be a busy year for the Irish GP14 dinghy fleet and to celebrate the progress being made in Cullaun with a new Clubhouse at Kilkishen in Co Clare and also to recognise the recent growth of GP14 sailing in…
The RCYC Academy is made up of 16 and 25 year -olds who get the chance to experience local sailing plus a chance to compete nationwide at Summer events.
Winter sail training for the Royal Cork Yacht Club Under 25 Keelboat Academy sponsored by EY is continuing in Cork Harbour this February writes Bob Bateman Primarily using the club's 1720 sportsboats, the Academy is made up of 16 and 25…
MBSC Laser winners from left:  Harry Pritchard Radial winner, Chris Bateman Overall Winner "Yard of Ale Trophy" And Ronan Keneally Organiser and second overall. Scroll down for photo gallery
Saturday, February 16th saw the Laser sailors of Cork gather for the final day of the Monkstown Laser Frostbite League, sponsored by CH Marine writes Chris Bateman. The morning began with a mixed sky over the bay. Patches of blue were…
The magic atmosphere of classic boat-building - the Dublin Bay 24 Zephyra under re-construction at the Apprenticeshop in Maine, USA.
Dublin Bay has an unrivalled continuous history of One-Design sailing and racing writes W M Nixon. It runs in a golden thread all the way back to 1887, when Ben Middleton launched his little class of Water Wag dinghies to…
The ICRA Nationals returns to Dublin in 2019
The three-day ICRA Championships being held in Dun Laoghaire from June 7 will comprise of four fleets accommodating offshore, traditional and white sail racing. Each fleet will get its own race areas with race management lead by International PRO David Lovegrove. Back…

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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