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Clockwise from top left: Ker 40 Keronimo, HH42 Ino XXX, JPK 11.80 Sunrise, First 40 Lancelot II
Teams from all over the world will be racing with the Royal Ocean Racing Club this weekend in the RORC Channel Race, the 11th race of the RORC Season's Points Championship, which precedes next month's Rolex Fastnet Race. Teams from…
Norbert Sedlacek's global challenge represents approximately 34,000 nautical miles and around 200 days at sea.
Former Vendée Globe skipper Norbert Sedlacek on his Open 60 is sailing south of Ireland today on his way to the North-West Passage on his journey around the world. Sedlacek's Open60AAL 'Innovation Yachts' officially crossed the starting line at 07:16:10…
Galway - Lorient twinning cruise arrives at the French Port on Saturday
Irish flags are flying during last Saturday's final short hop across in Galway Sailing's Cruise to Lorient.  The photo taken from the citadel at the entrance to Lorient Harbour shows some of the 25-boat flotilla from the west of Ireland…
An Italian pairing compete at the RS Feva Worlds in Follonica, Italy this week
Leonie Judge and Madison O'Conaill from the Royal Irish Yacht Club on Dublin Bay are Ireland's sole representatives at the RS Feva World Championships 2019 in Follonica, Italy this week.  The second day of racing at the 195-boat Championships 2019 greeted…
 George Kingston was the winner of the DBSC Laser Standard division race
Race 1 Cruiser 3 Tuesday Echo: 1. Jiminy Cricket, 2. Asterix, 3. Grasshopper Combined Cruisers Tuesday Echo: 1. Jalapeno, 2. Powder Monkey Sportsboat: 1. George 5, 2. Jay-Z, 3. Sea Jade Ruffian: 1. Carmen, 2. Bandit, 3. Alias B211 One…
Ballyholme Yacht Club hosts the 2019 Irish Laser National Championships
Ballyholme Yacht Club will host the 2019 Irish Laser National Championships from Thursday 22nd to Sunday 25th August 2019. All eyes have been on Japan this week and the Laser Radial World Championships where Aoife Hopkins and Aisling Keller are…
Aoife Hopkins (Howth, Co. Dublin) moved up a place after the penultimate day’s racing to 41st place in Japan
With just two races remaining at the Laser Radial World Championships in Sakaiminato, Japan to be sailed on Wednesday, both Irish Olympic campaigners are within reach of the single Irish qualification place for Tokyo 2020. Ten nation places are being…
Co-skippers Ari Huusela (left) and Mikey Ferguson on the former’s IMOCA 60 Ariel2
Bangor sailor Michael Ferguson (36), whose CV includes both dinghy and major offshore racing success, has been signed on to co-skipper the IMOCA 60 Ariel2 (formerly Dee Caffari’s Aviva) in the record 67-boat Transat Jacques Vabre fleet from Le Havre…
Eoghan Duffy (LRYC) and Cathal Langan (CYBC/SDC)
Blessington Sailing Club on the shores of the beautiful Pollaphuca Reservoir was the host venue to the Mirror Eastern Championships at the weekend. Six races were held in very difficult conditions for both race management and sailors with 40-degree wind…
Howth Yacht Club Hosting Marina Party This Saturday
Howth Yacht Club is calling on boat owners to be ‘mini-hosts’ as part of the special marina party this coming Saturday 27 July. The club promises “a great night” that kicks off with fireworks at 10pm and continues with guest…
This year’s Calves Week incorporates a race in the SCORA offshore series and will feature racing for six classes
With over 65 confirmed entries at present, representing fourteen clubs, ranging from Galway to Dublin, the 2019 Calves Week organised by Schull Harbour Sailing Club, is again shaping up to provide competitive and exciting racing for the annual West Cork…
Sam Shields (right), twice winner, has bought the famous Helen 76 (above) and completely rebuilt her for the Mermaid Championships
For the first time, The DBSC Mermaids are holding their annual Championship in Crosshaven over 4 days from 1st - 4th August hosted by the Royal Cork Yacht Club. The fleet has enjoyed numbers in excess of 25 to 30…
Aisling Keller lies 40th in the Laser Radial class in Japan
With just four races remaining at the Laser Radial World Championship in Japan, Ireland’s Aisling Keller and Aoife Hopkins are on target to secure Ireland's berth on the Tokyo startline in the Laser Radial class. Both Keller (Nenagh, Co. Tipperary)…
The Rolex Fastnet Race's largest monohull yachts at the start of the 2017 race
The weather will play a significant outcome in determining the overall results of the Rolex Fastnet Race. Winning your division is more within each team's control, and here we'll look at the top three IRC handicap categories in terms of…
Niels Frei and Yves Detrey with the hull of their prototype NTFM Syra 18 foiling dinghy
Besides the strong third-place showing by David Kenefick on Lake Garda a week ago, International Foiling Week also saw the launch of a new two-person foiling dinghy. The NTFM Syra 18 is the brainchild of America’s Cup winners Niels Frei…
Justin Burke's SB20 'Alert Packaging' competing on Dublin Bay
After what was a fantastic Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta with 16 SB20s competing for the silverware, the highlight of the SB20 season, the National Championships is now on the horizon. The three-day championship will be hosted by the Royal Irish Yacht…

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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