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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.

A unique club in a unique setting – when Howth Yacht Club moved into its new premises at mid-harbour early in 1987, it became that year’s Mitsubishi Motors “Sailing Club of the Year”.
Environmental awareness and sailing success to top international level were dynamically intertwined at this week’s official presentation of the Mitsubishi Motors “Sailing Club of the Year 2019” award to Howth Yacht Club writes W M Nixon The announcement that Howth…
The growing RC35 class were one of the strengths of the successful Bangor Town regatta in 2018. The Regatta is now set to be run on a biennial basis
An event which was once a major highlight of the Belfast Lough programme in times past found a new and very active lease of life when Bangor Town Regatta was re-introduced as a major biennial event in July 2018. The…
Bernard Moitessier’s steel ketch Joshua. A One-Design class of ten new boats developed to this design is planned to provide the backbone of the fleet for the 2022 Golden Globe re-enactment.
For those of us who find historical re-enactments to be slightly spooky, following the twists and turns of the Golden Globe Golden Jubilee Race through the latter half of 2018 and into the early months of 2019 has been -…
Conor Doyle’s impressive XP 50 Freya will sail for the honour of the home fleet
Kinsale in the summertime…..If you set out to create the dream harbour as the perfect location for a regatta which captures the essence of the many pleasures of sailing and racing on Ireland’s south coast, then you’d end up with…
Symbol for a voyage – the Salmons Wake logo inscribed on Ilen’s squaresail in the Ted Russell Dock in Limerick
The historic ketch Ilen of Limerick puts to sea again from her home port this weekend at the beginning of a complex 2019 sailing programme which will see the restored ship voyage in July towards southwest Greenland writes W M…
Close-fought GP 14 action on Lough Owel at Mullingar. The class starts its national programme at this central location on April 27th-28th
The keenly-run GP14 Ireland Association starts its national season in the final weekend of April (27th & 28th) in the central location of Lough Owel at Mullingar Sailing Club with the prestigious O’Tiarnaigh Trophy championship writes W M Nixon. The…
Cormac Lowth is one of Ireland’s leading amateur maritime historians. The support of his late wife Barbara has enabled him to develop a remarkable collection of material
The heartfelt sympathies of all those with extensive interests in the culture and history of the maritime world are with Cormac Lowth of Dublin and his sons on the sad loss of his wife and their mother Barbara, writes W…
The Swiss entry Team Work (Justine Mettraux and Gwenola Gahinet) showing the new Figaro 3’s foiling potential during the current Sardinha Cup series. A non-foiling version of the boat is being proposed as an economical possibility for the new Olympic Offshore Class. Meanwhile, the new fleet have to address some rig challenges and other teething problems before the Golden Jubilee Figaro brings the class to Kinsale in early June
The miraculous years of 2016 and 2017 provided a magic time in Irish sailing writes W M Nixon. Annalise won her Olympic Silver Medal. Shane McCarthy won the GP14 Worlds. And the most glamorous Round Ireland Race ever staged saw…
Smurfit Kappa has shown some impressive bursts of speed
Smurfit Kappa, the new Figaro 3 being raced in the current Sardinha Cup series in France by Tom Dolan and Damian Foxall, has been comfortably in the top ten since the start of the 320-mile Leg 3 off St Gillles…
She likes a breeze. The new foiling Figaro 3 has been recording impressive speeds in the current Sradinha Cup series when the wind is up, but strong winds are unlikely for the long Stage 3 now re-scheduled for Tomorrow (Thursday).   
The start of the Sardinha Cup Stage 3 for the new Beneteau Figaro 3 fleet has now been reset for 1330hrs local time tomorrow, Thursday, April 11th off St Gilles Croix de Ville, following a massive effort by the shore…
The new Figaro 3 fleet at the start of the Sardinha Cup series. Rig problems for a significant part of the fleet have resulted in Leg 3 being postponed until the weekend
After the heavy going experienced for much of the first two stages of the Sardinha Cup for the brand new Figaro 3 boats, a significant part of the fleet had sustained such serious rig problems that the long-distance Leg 3…
The essence of the Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta. The Dublin Bay 24 Periwinkle (built 1947) and the 1897 classic cutter Myfanwy approaching the harbour mouth racing neck-and-neck in idyllic summer sailing conditions in July 2017
In the years to come, Thursday, April 4th 2019 will be remembered as a pivotal date in the development of Dun Laoghaire Harbour as a maritime, recreational and community amenity, a key moment in the significant growth of a shared…
James Dwyer-Matthews pictured in his home waters of Kinsale at the 2018 Irish Nationals
James Dwyer Matthews (15) of Kinsale and Luke Turvey (13) of Howth have led the charge for Ireland in the 155-boat International Optimist British Spring Opens at Lymington, with both on the podium at the finish yesterday evening – Matthews…
The successful Cork Institute of Technology team at the Student Yachting Selection Trials at Howth over the weekend were (left to right) Ewan O’Keeffe, Mark Murphy, Morgan Knight, Harry Durcan (helmsman) and Grattan Roberts, with Commodore Ian Byrne HYC, and Race Officer Scorie Walls
The annual selection trials for the Irish team for the Student Yachting Worlds in France this Autumn has seen two days of superb racing over the weekend in Howth, with no complaints of lack of wind for the Howth YC…
Editorial desk with a difference……..on board the 64ft gaff cutter Annabel-J, powering along off the West Coast of Ireland. Annabel-J is owned by long distance voyager Andrew Wilkes and his wife Maire Breathnach of Dungarvan, who is currently Honorary Editor of the Irish Cruising Club Annual
When the Irish Cruising Club was established in Glengarriff at the head of Bantry Bay on Saturday 13th July 1929, the friendly gathering of the crews from a modest flotilla of five decidedly varied sailing yachts – mostly small craft…
Headsail trim on the Nixon Squib in the good old days of forty years ago, with taut forestays and wide slots…
A long time ago when I brought the first very second-hand Squib to Howth Yacht Club in 1979, things were different writes WM Nixon. After all, it was forty years ago (there’s another local class anniversary for you), and I’d spent…
New Date for Golden Oldie Round Ireland Show in Dublin
The unavoidably-postponed show in March by owner-skipper (and restorer) Darryl Hughes, of the classic 1937 43ft Tyrrell of Arklow ketch Maybird’s remarkable achievement in becoming (in 2018) the first gaff-rigged (and oldest) boat to complete the Round Ireland Race, has…
Special gathering – the four “Sailors of the Year” together in Sutton this week are (left to right) Conor Fogerty (2017), Annalise Murphy (2016) and Sean Waddilove & Rob Dickson (2018)
Annalise Murphy’s role in raising sailing’s profile in Ireland was brought home to us last weekend when The Irish Times ran a St Patrick’s Eve Quiz. Set by Eoin Butler, it aimed to test how truly Irish we who like…
Outgoing NYC Commodore Ronan Beirne
One of the most popular figures on the Dun Laoghaire waterfront, National Yacht Club outgoing Commodore Ronan Beirne, completes his two-year term of office this Saturday night with the traditional formal Commodore’s Dinner, which is only held when the role…
An eye-catching book cover…….having Winslow Homer’s famous 1899 painting “The Gulf Stream” - with its graphic suggestions of inevitable tragedy - superimposed by the chirpy title “Fun with Sailboats” may not be to everyone’s taste. But it certainly captures attention for American Pete Brennan’s book on his sometimes quirky sailing experiences on both sides of the Atlantic
Pete Brennan is an American of partially Irish ancestry who came originally from New Jersey, and now lives in Florida writes W M Nixon. For most of his life he has had steady jobs which had nothing whatever to do…
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