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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.

The busy National YC in Dun Laoghaire will be the focus for Women's Sailing this weekend
With Ireland's diverse selection of women sailors achieving an extensive range of success locally, nationally and internationally during 2022, interest in getting involved is running at a high level across the population generally, and this Friday evening (August 26th), the…
They're getting used to it - the successful Headcase J/24 squad of Cillian Dickson, Sam O'Byrne, Ryan Glynn, Louis Mulloy and Marcus Ryan with their latest winning trophy at Howth
With a fleet of 20 boats and crews drawn from 15 different clubs, including Seattle to the far west and Poole to the nearer southeast, the Irish J/24 Easterns over the weekend at Howth set the ball rolling towards the J/24…
All in a Rush together....Patrick Boardman's King One (Rush SC & Howth YC) on the way to overall victory in the RORC Half Ton Classics at Cowes
A breezy session to round out a rugged series today (Friday) saw Patrick Boardman's immaculate Classic Half Tonner King One from Rush SC and Howth confirmed as overall winner of the RORC Half Ton Classics 2022 at Cowes from a…
When Irish sailing conditions are good, they’re very good indeed. Aboard the successful J/99 Snapshot during the Fastnet Race in the recent Calves Week at Schull, with Des Flood on the trim, Richie Evans on the helm, and Mike Evans keeping things in order
So where are they? The hurricanes, we mean. Or more accurately, the “decaying tropical storms” which occasionally make their ominous and often unpredictable way towards Ireland as the Summer progresses and morphs into Autumn. For as it happens, back in…
Slicing up the Solent: Jonny Swan's Harmony and Dave Cullen's Checkmate (both from Howth) battling it out for top honours in the current International Half Ton Cup at Cowes
The three top Fingal-based classic Half Tonners - Patrick Boardman's King One from Rush, and Harmony (Jonny Swan) and Checkmate XV (Dave Cullen) from Howth - are having themselves a rare old time in the17-strong fleet in the RORC's Half…
Line Honours for Team Medallia - L to R: Nick Bubb, Paul Larsen, Pip Hare, Kevin George, Ben Schwartz
There has been so much enthusiasm and energy put into setting new sailing speed records in every discipline over the years that it may well be the only way to make a breakthrough is to see just how slowly you…
A dream emerges from the mist - ST Grace O'Malley Arrives In The Liffey
When we remember that as recently as 1576, the most memorable visit to the Dublin area by the Connacht Pirate Queen Grace O'Malley resulted in her kidnapping of the heir to Howth Castle in a dispute about the hospitality -…
Clean away – Squib action in the Easterns at Howth
“Mixed feelings” might describe the ordinary host club members’ feelings in contemplating the results of the Squib Easterns at Howth. For although Derek Bothwell, one of HYC’s elite squad of Race Officers, managed to pull a very complete set of…
Dreamship from a different world – the world-girdling Colin Archer Ketch Sandefjord in Dun Laoghaire Marina this week
There’s a small but sure glow of stardust in Dun Laoghaire Marina at the moment. Rugged stardust perhaps, but unmistakably genuine stardust nevertheless. The Norwegian gaff ketch Sandefjord, the quintessential Colin Archer-created rescue vessel of 1913 vintage which added ocean…
A heart-stirring sight – Grace O’Malley under full sail
In recent days, we’ve seen celebrations honouring the super-star young sailors who have brought major international sailing medals of gold, silver and bronze home to Ireland and their rightfully-delighted families and cheering local clubs. These are sailors whose special talent…
On course for Greenland…….Pip Hare’s IMOCA 60 has struck out into the open Atlantic from the Blaskets in search of wind in the RORC Sevenstar Round Britain & Ireland race
The clockwise 1800 miles Sevenstar Round Britain & Ireland Race has been dogged by light winds and calms ever since it started from Cowes at the weekend, and the bulk of the 30-strong fleet is still struggling along Ireland’s southwest…
A windfoiler arrives alone into the ultra-remote inlet of Portacloy in northwest Mayo. That would quite unusual in itself. But by the time this photo was taken, Hannes Louet-Feisser of Carlingford was already two-thirds of the way around Ireland on his extraordinary solo circumnavigation project
Most of us thought that all Round Ireland Sailing Records at the lower end of the size scale had been long since put to bed. After all, it was way back in 1961 that Kevin & Colm MacLaverty with Mick…
Serious competition at the sharp end of the traditional fleet at Kinvara during Cruinniu na mBad at Kinvara
When the highly-respected Organising Chairman Dr Mick Brogan declared - in May 2020 - that the annual Cruinniu na mBad - the Gathering of the Boats - could not be held in August at Kinvara in face of the spread…
Summertime sailing on the Fingal coast. The 1907-vintage Howth 17 Rosemary, built by James Kelly of Portrush and owned since 1974 by David Jones and George Curley with David Potter a more recent additional partner, comes to the lee mark under spinnaker in third place in one of Saturday’s four races. After the completion of the five-race series, Rosemary was Howth 17 National Champion for the first time
Even by the long-view standards of the 124-year-old Howth 17 Class, the 48-year owning partnership in the 1907-vintage Rosemary between David Jones and George Curley - with David Potter more recently joining the strength as George turned 90 last year…
HYC Commodore Paddy Judge welcomes the Howth squad home from the ILCA6 Youth Worlds in Texas with (left to right) Luke Turvey, Eve McMahon (Gold) and Rocco Wright (Bronze in U17). A carnival-style welcome home celebration will be staged at Howth YC next Friday (August 12th), starting 4 pm
In some ways, Howth Yacht Club has it easy. It isn’t hampered by being the senior sailing centre in Ireland. That particular burden has been carried since 1720 by Cork. Nor is it sailing’s premier centre. Since the active first…
Laura Dillon collects her Cowes Week trophy
Lady's Day at Cowes Week may sound like a charmingly old-fashioned Victorian concept, but there was nothing old-fashioned about the way that top women sailors of the calibre of Laura Dillon of Howth contested the time-honoured event yesterday in the…
Flying the flag for Ukraine and Clare – Seol Sionna’s new St Ayles skiff Ealu from Kilrush has a paint finish honouring both beleaguered Ukraine and the Banner County. Providing the rowing power on her traditional sunwise circuit of Scattery Island are James Madigan, Sean Walsh, Aisling Heaps, Peter Ranalow and John Kennedy
When it came to painting the new St Ayles skiff Ealu built by Seol Sionnas (the owners of the much-admired traditional cutter Sally O’Keeffe) under the direction of Steve Morris in Kilrush Boatyard, it was “No Contest” as regards décor…
Go to the islands for the sun – bright morning for the GBSC Lambs Week boats at Kilronan while the clouds hang out over nearby Ireland
It can sometimes take quite a bit of tough windward slugging to get to the islands out in the Atlantic off the Connacht coast. But those boats that do are usually well rewarded, as rain-bearing clouds from the west will…
Eve McMahon on her way to World Championship success in Texas
Eve McMahon (18) returned to top form for Ireland with two more bullets in today (Saturday's) final three races in the ILCA6/Laser Radial Youth Worlds 2022 at Houston in Texas. After six straight wins in the first four days, there…
The Charge of the Centenary Brigade – Shannon ODs (of all ages) in full flight on Lough Ree with (left to right): 99 (Peter Mulvihill, built 1975); 37 Kiwi (Mags Delany, 1923), 176 (Harman Murtagh Jnr, 2008); 138 (DJ Algeo, 1987); 142 Frank Guy (overall winner LRYC SOD Centenary Regatta and Combined LDYC/LRYC Centenary Regattas, 1990); 71 (Oonagh Reid, 1960); 73 (David Dickson (6th LRYC SOD Centenary Regatta, 1961); 151 (Graham McMullin 5th LRYC Cent. Reg, 1995); 155 (Cathal Breen, 4th LRYC and 2nd Combined LDYC/LRYC Regattas, 1999); 32 (Mary Cox (formally Syd Shine's boat) built 1922
The unique 18ft Shannon One-Designs have lived through some decidedly mixed times in Ireland during their hundred years of setting the sailing pace on the great lakes of our lordly river. And the two special Centenary Regattas at their main…
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