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WM Nixon

WM Nixon

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William M Nixon has been writing about sailing in Ireland for many years in print and online, and his work has appeared internationally in magazines and books. His own experience ranges from club sailing to international offshore events, and he has cruised extensively under sail, often in his own boats which have ranged in size from an 11ft dinghy to a 35ft cruiser-racer. He has also been involved in the administration of several sailing organisations.

Home again – solo sailor Richard Hayes in his Ireland-circumnavigating Laser is welcomed back to Rinville and Galway Bay Sailing Club
The contrast could not have been greater writes W M Nixon. On Friday, September 14th on Ireland’s relatively sheltered East Coast, 302 Laser dinghies came in from Dublin Bay to Dun Laoghaire’s elegant and busy harbour to conclude the penultimate day’s…
Mona (Denis Aylmer) and Tir na nOg (Sean Walsh) racing in the inaugural event for the DBOGA’s Leinster Plate in 2013. This Sunday’s planned staging at Dun Laoghaire of the Leinster Plate Race 2018 may be affected by the inclement weather, and a decision will be taken on Saturday morning
This year's Centenary of the wartime sinking of the mailboat RMS Leinster on 10th October 1918 will see a significant Dun Laoghaire and national commemoration on the day itself writes W M Nixon. As part of the buildup to those…
Extreme conditions during the Sydney-Hobart Race, one of the topics scheduled for the Weather & Sailing Conference in Dun Laoghaire on Friday November 23rd
Ireland’s weather fascinates everyone. But for boat enthusiasts, an informed insight into the workings of maritime meteorology anywhere in the world has many practical and often vital applications writes W M Nixon. With this in mind, Darryl Hughes (best known…
The restored Ilen looking well at Oldcourt, with some final trimming still needed to bring her to her marks
The successful ten-year restoration of the 1926 Baltimore-built 56ft trading ketch Ilen, originally constructed by Tom Moynihan and his shipwrights in West Cork to designs by pioneering global circumnavigator Conor O’Brien of Limerick, has been a continuing story in Afloat.ie…
 Sebastien Simon (above) is the provisional overall winner of the 49th edition of the La Solitaire du Figaro
A freshening nor’west to north wind brought life to the final stages of the concluding Stage 4 of the Solitaire URGO Figaro 2018 off Saint Gilles this afternoon, and kept Anthony Marchand in the lead at the finish of the…
Ireland’s Tom Dolan in Smurfit Kappa (15) on port tack shortly after the start
The final 165-mile stage of the Solitaire URGO Figaro 2018 – which began last night at 1830 hrs - is envisaged as a sprint of less than 24 hours in which the 36 solo skippers will do entirely without sleep…
A race and a place imbued with history – the Rock is astern in 2015’s Rolex Fastnet Race with the classic Stormy Weather (overall winner in 1935) leading from fellow-classic Dorade (overall winner in 1931 and again in 1933).
It was announced this week that the 2019 RORC Rolex Fastnet Race from Cowes will have a change of its original date, with its start moved back from Sunday, August 18th all the way to Saturday, August 3rd. W M…
Tom Dolan has achieved a clear win in the First Timers section in the 410-mile Stage 3 of Solitaire URGO Le Figaro, taking eleventh overall just 15 minutes behind the leader after 3 days and 16 hours of racing
Tom Dolan of County Meath racing Smurfit Kappa took the coveted Top Rookie spot after a worthwhile little breeze finally spread in over the calm-bedevilled Figaro fleet last night as they raced Stage 3 from Northwest Spain, bringing leader Sebastien…
Sebastien Simon, front-runner in the Solitaire URGO Figaro. He has a new IMOCA 60 on the way for the Vendee Globe 2020
It’s a cruel scenario, the final wind-lacking 70–miles of Stage 3 of the Solo URGO Figaro 2018 from northwest Spain across the Bay of Biscay to Saint-Gilles in the northwest of France’s Vendee region writes W M Nixon. We may…
Tom Dolan with his Figaro 2 Smurfit Kappa nicely in the groove as as the fleet shapes up to take on the long slow beat across the Bay of Biscay. Photo Figaro URGO Solo
With a hundred miles still to race this morning to the finish at Saint Gilles Croix de Vie on France’s Biscay coast, the shortened 410 miles Stage 3 of La Solitaire URGO Figaro 2018 from northwest Spain is even more…
Tom Dolan’s Figaro 2 Smurfit Kappa is currently among the front-runners in Stage 3 of the Figaro Solo
Ireland’s Tom Dolan has seen his position move between 7th and 12th this morning as he features frequently in the Top Ten with the Solitaire URGO Figaro fleet racing in difficult headwinds across the southern Bay of Biscay from Northwest…
An emotional moment – Ireland’s Joan Mulloy receives her Special Award for overcoming adversity from the communities of Ria de Muros
Joan Mulloy of Mayo overcame the setback of a broken main halyard to get back in the hunt in Stage 2 of the Solo URGO Figaro from Saint Brieuc in Brittany across the Bay of Biscay to Ria de Muros…
Gold galore! New Olympic 49er U23 Gold Medallist Robert Dickson (left) with HYC Commodore Joe McPeake and fellow Medallist Sean Waddillove at Howth Yacht Club’s “Welcome Home” celebration last night.
Howth Yacht Club members have already logged some remarkable successes during the 2018 season, but the Gold Medals won by Robert Dickson (21, HYC) and Sean Waddilove (20, Skerries SC) in the Olympic 49er U23 Worlds last weekend at Marseilles…
The Supreme Master – Bruce Kirby designed the hugely popular Laser 48 years ago.
Lasers Masters do not grow old as those who stay ashore or go into keelboats grow old. On the contrary, they’re Tir na nOg afloat. It’s the Land of the Ever-Young out on the sea. And the prospect of the…
The fleet nicely stitched up at the start. Jonny Swan’s Harmony (foreground) and Dave Cullen’s Checkmate XV (blue bow) nicely clear in a Half Ton Classics start in Belgium. The final overall result was Checkmate first and Harmony second
A properly managed race-winning cruiser-racer talks to us. And we, in turn, think in terms of “a well-presented boat” writes W M Nixon. But there’s much more to it than stylish presentation. It’s not enough just to look good. Everything…
The home place……clear evening at Greystones Harbour with the Sugarloaf Mountain silhouetted against the last of the sunset. This weekend sees the two-day Taste of Greystones Regatta in the continuing celebration of Greystones Sailing Club’s Golden Jubilee Year
When 2018’s rain-free heat-wave of zephyrs and calms was at its peak in July, old salts of every age and gender naturally and inevitably observed in their sagacious way that it would all end with a bang. They reckoned that…
Hanging in there……Ireland’s community-minded International GP 14 Class meet for their three-day Irish Nationals at Sligo today. Skerries SC and GP14 Ireland will be hosting the Worlds at Skerries in 2020
With 178 Optimists racing in the Irish Nationals at Kinsale, and Ireland’s GP14 dinghies in fine form after the massive Worlds in England as they gather for their own Nationals in Sligo this weekend through to Monday, there’s much to…
John Maybury’s J/109 Joker II will be looking to take her fourth ICRA National title in a row in Galway next week after an extraordinary month in July when she achieved success in the Round Ireland and Beaufort Cup skippered by Commandant Barry Byrne
With three-times-in-a-row class champion Joker 2 (John Maybury, Royal Irish YC) set to defend her title for an unprecedented fourth time, the Irish Cruiser Racing Association Nationals in Galway next week will be making history at least twice over in…
West Cork sailing at its best – Paul O'Higgins' JPK 10.80 Rockabill VI in action at Calves Week
West Cork, Ireland's own Lotus Land, should be designated a licensed substance writes W M Nixon. A licensed substance with a proper scientific code, to be administered only by highly-trained professionals. People in white coats. In a clinical setting. For…
May 7th, 1915. The sailing fishing boat Wanderer from the Isle of Man is first on the scene after the Transatlantic liner Lusitania is torpedoed ten miles off the Old Head of Kinsale by a German submarine as an act of war. The first survivors have already been hauled on board Wanderer, while others struggle towards their rescuer in the water or on lifeboats
In the midst of high summer, with life slowed by the all-pervading heat, it is almost impossible to contemplate the sheer horror of total conflict as experienced in the industrialised attacks of the Great War of 1914-18 writes W M…
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