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Displaying items by tag: Tralee Bay Sailing Club

Tralee Bay Sailing Club and the West of Ireland Offshore Racing Association (WIORA) have announced its staging of the 2020 WIORA Championships at Fenit in County Kerry has been postponed until September.

TBSC Commodore Liam Lynch and WIORA Commodore Gary Fort agreed that it would be impossible to run the event under the current restrictions on its original dates from June (24th -29th).

New dates have been agreed for the end of September which will not clash with other events on the cruiser-racer calendar.

The event will now be held over two weekends, Saturday and Sunday, September 19th and 20th and Friday and Saturday, September 25th and 26th.

The Notice of Race and entry forms will be available at

There will also be a race to Kilrush on the Shannon Estuary on Sunday 27th to position boats for the RWYCI October Series.

Published in WIORA

The new year dinghy clinic organised by the Tralee Bay Maritime Centre is now in its third year and 2019's edition was a success with 30 boats attending.

16 Optimists including national champion Justin Lucas and Dublin ace Sam Ledoux trained under the direction of French coach Viviane Chaix and former medallist at Optimist worlds Sophie Browne.

Former Academy sailors Darragh O ‘Sullivan and Cian Byrne managed the two Laser groups (10 sailors) while Clinic Manager and lead coach Thomas Chaix worked with the four 29er partnerships.

29er TraleeFour 29er partnerships were afloat in Tralee Bay

The week proved to be outstanding with many hours secured in the mild conditions and great winds ranging from 3 to 18kts. The focussed training with experienced coaches proved to be very efficient and sailors and parents alike were very pleased to have started their new year in Kerry.

optimist tralee16 Optimists including national champion Justin Lucas and Dublin ace Sam Ledoux trained under the direction of French coach Viviane Chaix

Peter Williams was the recipient of the Maritime Centre coaches award adding his name to the big cup.

The clinic concluded with the traditional regatta run under PY on a windward leeward course. The average lap approach allowed the fast 29er and the slower optimist to compete against each other.

Laser traleeFormer Academy sailors Darragh O ‘Sullivan and Cian Byrne managed the two Laser groups (10 sailors)

Four races were completed in the 15-18 kts Southerly right in front of Fenit beach... Some of the races were very close with mere seconds separating sailors. Eventually, Adam Wash (Laser 4.7) managed to edge out Sam Ledoux and radial sailor Paddy Cunnane.

The new “battle of the classes” trophy was won by the laser 4.7 (Adam Walsh, Harry Pritchard and Stephen Cunnane) ahead of the Optimist (Sam Ledoux, Peter Williams and Killian Reidy). Download results below.

lasers Dinghy traleeLaser and Optimist Dinghies are recovered in Fenit

Published in Youth Sailing

The J/24 Association of Ireland has announced the calendar for its regional and national championships in 2019.

Lough Ree Yacht Club will host the class for its Westerns in the first big event of the year on the weekend of 13-14 April — the week before Easter.

The following month the fleet moves to Tralee Bay Sailimg Club for the Southerns on 25-26 May.

Howth Yacht Club will host the Eastern Championship on 15-16 June, and the Nationals on 23-25 August will be sailing out of Lough Erne Yacht Club.

Published in J24

Tralee Bay Maritime Centre have over 50 boats on the water this week at Fenit in County Kerry. Brian O'Sullivan, Centre Principal, told he is delighted with the response to the performance coaching clinic, led by Thomas Chaix, with some of the best junior sailors in the country coming together in three different dinghy sailing classes - Lasers, Toppers and Optimists

Coaches from Greece, Portugal, France, Poland and Ireland have their hands full with a massive turnout for the inaugural clinic at Europe's most westerly port.

Published in Youth Sailing

Tralee Bay Sailing Club in Fenit may seem a long way from the established sailing centres in Cork, Dublin and Belfast Lough writes W M Nixon. But it is set in the heart of one of the most energetic and sports-mad areas in Ireland, and if it were to re-name itself as the Kingdom of Kerry Yacht Club, it might better express its key role in channeling the sailing spirit of Ireland’s largest and most characterful county.

With a proper marina well filled with serious boats and set within the shelter of Great Samphire Island where Fenit Harbour provides total shelter, the hospitable village is accessed by a causeway bridge. And at Fenit itself, Tralee Bay SC in its spectacular location above the dinghy park and slip provides a strong focal point to co-ordinate sailing at every level from a village which has the added advantage of being south-facing.

tralee bay sailing club
Optimists launching for a major championship at Tralee Bay SC

tralee bay sailing club marina Fenit
The marina at Fenit loking east

The Roll Call of historic sailing events – local, national and world level – which have been staged here in the club’s sixty years would put many a larger and longer-established club to shame. But such has been the hectic level of activity in every area of sailing that the club find their 60th Anniversary is roaring down the line for celebration on July 16th without a reasonably complete selection of historic material in place in order to do the TBSC story full justice.

In other words, if you’ve relevant sailing and sailing people photos going back to 1956 and even beyond, please get them to the club pronto, as they want to have a proper exhibition in place to tell the Tralee Bay Sailing Club Story on July 16th when a programme of special events afloat and ashore will celebrate three score years years of a great sailing club.

Tralee_bay_Yachts_RacingBig sailing winds - ICRA Nationals in Tralee Bay. Photo: Robert Bateman

Published in News Update

Three Tralee Bay Sailing Club members set out from Fenit in county Kerry yesterday to retrace a TBSC voyage first made 25 years ago. Ribbers Cian O'Donnell, James Landers and Giles Kelliher set out from the most westerly port in Europe on the 700–mile circumnavigation. Pit stops are planned in Burtonport tonight, then Bangor, Kilmore Quay, Dingle before returning home to Fenit. 

Published in Powerboat Racing

Beautiful sunshine and a wide range of wind speeds greeted the participants of the two day training weekend organised by Simon McGibney from ICRA/WIORA and Des McWilliam and Graham Curran of UK McWilliam Sailmakers. This was the second year of the training clinic, successfully hosted again by Tralee Bay Sailing Club with boats from the Royal Western Yacht Club, Galway Bay Sailing Club, Foynes Yacht Club and Tralee Bay Sailing Club taking part.

Building on the format developed last year the weekend began with an early start for a long day on the water with OOD Peter Moore and his team from TBSC. Des and Graham were on the water in RIBs and followed the fleet throughout the day, observing and videoing race starts, mark roundings, tacks, gybes, sail trim etc. They also went onboard boats to watch crews as they went through procedures and throughout the day were able to interject with advice when required.

The race team got in seven races on a windward leeward course with the addition of a gate to ensure boats completed gybing manoeuvres downwind. To keep racing interesting crews had to listen out for any ‘special instructions’ from the OOD such as every boat must put in a certain number of tacks before the windward mark. Racing was very close with an evenly matched fleet of boats competing. The weekend also included practice race starts which consisted of eight races starts run off one after another with just three minute countdowns. Exhausting work for crews but great for practicing skills! Saturday drew to a close with BBQ in clubhouse overlooking the beautiful Tralee Bay a full debrief session an each of the skills where crews had the opportunity to watch some of the recorded footage of the day. After the debrief session Elaine O’Mahoney from Foynes Yacht Club ran a very entertaining nautical quiz, which the participants really enjoyed.

Graham Curran onboard Huntress

Graham Curran of UK McWilliam Sailmakers onboard Huntress 

There was plenty of chat about the live results that were efficiently provided by ICRA’s scoring guru Denis Kiely and could be accessed by competitors between races out on the water on ICRA’s website

Racing on Sunday began early again – something about being ashore for a Kerry/Dublin football match! The training team got in another seven races to bring the tally to fourteen for the two day training clinic. The weekend concluded with a final debrief session with Des and Graham and a lot of happy crews went home with a bit more knowledge on how to improve their racing. Looking forward to the next one! Would highly recommend this training clinic to any club to organise. Contact can made with Des through here 

Published in ICRA

#TBSC - Tralee Bay Sailing Club hosted the UK Sailmakers Ireland team of Des McWilliam and Graham Curran on the water for two days of coaching this past weekend (13-14 June).

A series of 16 races was run over the two-day event in Fenit, where a lot was learned and plenty of fun was had by all, as the video above can attest! A photo gallery of the weekend is also available HERE.

Published in News Update

#icranats – Take sixty-one offshore racers, recruited from Ireland's leading sailing centres. Place them in a bay of stunning beauty, set among spectacular mountains perhaps, but nevertheless a bay which is inescapably located right on Ireland's Atlantic weather frontier. Then take a witch's brew of weather, with at least three different low pressure areas circling with malice around your race area on an axis of about 400 miles.

That done, carefully calibrate the line of the Polar jetstream so that its most vivid red hues on the charts are located precisely over your chosen location, massively accentuating the power of any breezes or rainstorms occuring within its ambit. Then sit back and contemplate the extreme results of your wicked work. And what you have is precisely the setup which developed as the four day WIORA Championship and ICRA Nationals were staged at Tralee Bay.

For the ICRA Nats from Thursday June 13th to Saturday June 15th, they'd scheduled six races in a no-discard series. They did well to get a series with the minimum staging of three races, two on the Thursday in champagne sailing conditions, and then as the weather went down the tubes on Friday, just one hour long event in filthy rain to hit the quota.

Sailingwise, Saturday was totally blown out. But they'd a result already, and of course by having the incorporated WIORA series starting a day earlier, the most enthusiastic participants saw themselves as losing only one day's racing out of a four day series. Horses for courses, perhaps, but for some determined western sailors, this was exactly as it should have been. They're singularly proud of the fact that WIORA has held an annual championship since 1976 – it's an education to read on their website the champions list of gallant western boats and skippers going back 37 years – while ICRA is the new boy on the block, still wet behind the ears with its foundation as recently as 2002.


Tralee Bay, a place of stunning beauty a great sailing venue twice visited by the ICRA national fleet. Photo Bob Bateman

The lead-in to the series at Tralee was deceptive, as the Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race of June 7th, used by many as a feeder, was gentle summer sailing at its very best. The very best, that is, if you won on a rising breeze from the back of the fleet, which is what Tralee skipper Brian O'Sullivan and his crew managed with their veteran Oyster 37 Amazing Grace. But maybe not so good for the O'Leary family with their Baltimore/Crosshaven Ker 39 Antix, which achieved line honours in handsome style in Dingle, only to see their placing slip to 14th overall as the tail-enders became the leaders.


The Oyster 37 Amazing Grace from the host club. Photo: Bob Bateman

So as the boats gathered in Fenit a couple of days later, there was keen anticipation to see if the pattern of the Dingle race results could be reversed. And there was a completely new boat in the picture too. The latest race machine from X Yachts of Denmark, the XP33, made her debut only last November. But Conor Fanning of X Yachts secured one for Ireland, and with Colin Byrne of Dun Laoghaire on the helm and the legendary Jochem Visser on the strength, clearly this boat Bon Exemple was one to watch.


IRC one champion Bon Exemple, is the new Xp33 design. Photo: Bob Bateman

Not all boats had entered both championships, so the WIORA Overall Results posted soon after Friday's gloomy token race have notable absentees. In IRC0 the four entries appropriately had a western champion, Martin Breen's Reflex 38 Discover Ireland with Denise Phelan's Ker 37 from Jump Juice second five points behind. But in IRC 1 the points margin was in a different league – the XP 33 was put of sight with just 5 points, while John Gordon's X332 from Mayo had 20. Another western boat, Ray McGibney's Dehler 34 Dis-a-Ray from Foynes, won IRC2 with 9 points from two Corby 25s, Liam Burke's Tribal from Galway on 14, and Rob Allen's Smile of Kirush and Galway on 20. IRC 3 saw an east coast winner, Barry Cunningham's Quarter Tonner Quest from the RIYC by 10 points from the 15.5 of the host club's Gary Fort with his J/24 Jaguar.


Antix, the Ker 39, is the IRC Zero champion. Photo: Bob Bateman

When the ICRA imprimatur came into play on the Thursday, the competition notably intensified, and the pace of sunny Thursday was maintained into Friday's "grand soft day, thank God". The Antix crew were in fighting form in the five boat IRC 0, but fair play to the Galwaymen on Lynx Clipper, they were only 2.5 points adrift at the end, Antix on 5.5 to Lynx's 8, while ICRA Commodore Nobby Reilly of Howth took third with co-owner Alan Chambers on their Mills 36 Crazy Horse Mills 36, only 1.5 points behind Lynx.

The big turnout in IRC 1 saw Bon Exemple resume her successful debut, but not until after she'd trailed Pat Kelly from Rush with his J/109 Storm – the Fingal flyers finished only two points behind the hyper-hot new X boat, and another J/109, Ian Nagle's Jelly Baby from Cork, was in the hunt too, finishing on 10 to be 3 points clear of Paul O'Higgins Corby 33 from Dun Laoghaire.

IRC2 had an even better geographical spread of top boats, underlining the truly national nature of this event. Indeed, in this class it was international, as winner Nigel Biggs with his Half Tonner Checkmate may race for RStGYC in Ireland, but he's from North Wales, and you're as likely to find him competing in the Solent. Normally it's a direct ding-dong between Checkmate and David Cullen's classic Half Tonner King One from Howth, but Ray McGibney from Foynes with his veteran Dehler 34 Dis-a-Ray pulled off a coup by getting between them with second on 9 points while King One was third on 12, fourth going to Paul & Deirdre Tingle of Cork with the Corby 25 Alpaca while sister ship Tribal (Liam Burke, Galway) was fifth.

Barry Cunningham of Dun Laoghaire in IRC3 was the only skipper to pull off the double of winning overall in both WIORA and ICRA with his sweet little Humphreys Quarter Tonner Quest. The enthusiastic Losty team from Cobh with their restored French Quarter Tonner Illes Pitiuses were second on 8 points to Quest's 5, while local helm Gary Fort was in the frame again, third on 9 points with his J/24 Jaguar, well clear of fourth placed Alliance II, Vincent Gaffney's interesting and rare Laser 28 from Howth, on 16 points.

 MG 98812

The marina in Fenit was the base for the60-boat ICRA championship fleet. Photo: Bob Bateman

When Tralee Bay SC staged the Irish Intervarsity Team Racing Opens for 26 teams back on the St Patrick's Weekend in March, they had great luck with the weather – reasonably gentle sunny conditions, while most of the rest of Ireland continued ion th grip of winter. So maybe the Kerrymen used up their quota of good weather luck three months ago. But although the last day may have been blown out on Tralee Bay for the ICRA Nats, when the sailing was good, it was very good indeed, and the images from this championship show sailing at its best.


Champions with ICRA commodore Nobby Reilly (centre) at TBSC. Photo: Gareth Craig

The 2013 Irish Cruiser racer national champions are:

Class 0 IRC

Antix Anthony O Leary. RCYC 

Class 0 Echo

Discover Ireland Martin Breen GBSC 

Class 1 IRC

Bon Example Colin Byrne RIYC

Class 1 Echo

Joker 11 John Maybury RIYC 

Class 2 IRC

Checkmate Nigel Biggs RST G 

Class 2 Echo

Surfdancer Charlie Mc Donnell RCYC 

Class 3 IRC

Quest Barry Cunningham RIYC 

Class 3 Echo

Jaguar Gary Fort TBSC 

Corinthian Cup

Growler Diarmuid Dineen TBSC IRC Non Spinnaker

Ridire Ban Mike Mc Donnell TBSC Echo Non Spinnaker

Published in ICRA

ICRA Feeder races from Dublin bay, Galway bay and the Shannon Estuary, some with early starts to avail of favourable tides are planned for early June all to arrive in good time for the Fenit based National Cruiser Championships.

The Dun Laoghaire to Dingle (D2D) race starting on Friday, June 7th from Dublin Bay has over 20 boats entered so far. Significantly entries are ranging on IRC handicap points difference from .898 to 1.144 and maybe higher, so there will be a well spread fleet going down the east coast of Ireland on June 7th.

A favourite west coast feeder is the O'Sullivans Marine 100–mile race. This annual fixture is planned to leave Galway docks at 20.00 also on Friday, June 7th for an over night race into Fenit marina the following day and is billed as ideal for ICRA boats coming from Sligo, Mayo, Clifden.


Published in ICRA
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