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Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

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Sailing in Ireland. Sailors, Yachting, Clubs, Regattas
Royal Irish's XP33 Bon Exemple skippered by Colin Byrne
An 11-boat turnout for race ten of Cruisers One (IRC) saw the Royal Irish's XP33 Bon Exemple skippered by Colin Byrne take the gun in the AIB Dublin Bay Sailing Club (DBSC) Thursday night Series.  A 15-knot or less westerly breeze saw a…
The four superb J Class yachts got the party started with their own fleet start
The entire Superyacht Cup fleet made the Bay of Palma their arena today as Europe's longest-running superyacht regatta hit its stride with another day of sparkling Mallorcan sailing conditions. Pantaenius Race Day saw a slightly lighter breeze than Wednesday's opening…
The 44Cup at Marstrand, Sweden gets underway
Njörðr, the Norse god of the sea and the wind was clearly smiling upon both the 44Cup Marstrand and local team Artemis Racing for the first day of the 2022 44Cup’s third event off western Sweden’s holiday hotspot of Marstrand.…
Michael Chapman Pincher – virgin sailor, raconteur extraordinaire, evocative writer, testosterone-charged troubadour, survivor…..
When Michael Chapman Pincher arrived into Howth Yacht Club yesterday for the launch of his sometimes raunchy book The Lost Log, there was a slight shadow clouding his normally sunny visage. The book is about how in 1974 he lost…
Thomas Roche's Salona 45 Meridian from Kinsale Yacht Club is entered into October's Middle Sea Race from Malta
Some 49 yachts from 21 countries – including Ireland – have entered the Mediterranean’s premier 606-mile classic to date. Thomas Roche's Salona 45 Meridian from Kinsale Yacht Club is entered into the race that has seen a string of Irish boats compete…
Pat Kelly and the crew of the winning J109, Storm at Bangor Town Regatta
Maybe future Bangor Town Regattas could present a prize for the boat with the most family members on board? For the three-generation crewed J109 Storm from Rush Sailing Club and Howth Yacht Club which won Class 2, the RC 35…
Vincent Delany and Emma Webb of the Royal St. George Yacht Club in number 3 Pansy leading on the downwind leg in Dun Laoghaire from eventual RSTGYC Regatta race winner number 45 Mariposa sailed by Cathy Mac Aleavey and Con Murphy of the National Yacht Club
Wednesday night's regular Water Wag races also served as the fleet Frank Keane BMW George Regatta races at Dun Laoghaire Harbour.  A 26-boat fleet sailed one light airs in-harbour Jubilee Cup race won by Wag number 45 Mariposa sailed by Cathy…
Robert Rendell's Grand Soleil 44 Samatom from Howth Yacht Club is racing from Dun Laoghaire to Cork
Robert Rendell's Grand Soleil 44 Samatom from Howth Yacht Club is the latest boat to sign-up to Ireland's newest offshore race starting this Friday, July 1st. The 'K2Q' or 'Kingstown to Queenstown Race' has just announced a novel two races…
The Irish Optimist fleet is heading to Galway Bay for its Connacht Championships on July 9 and 10
9th and 10th of July will see one of the largest competitive fleets seen in Galway Bay for many years take to the water for the Connacht Optimist Championships which is being hosted by Galway Bay Sailing Club. Up to…
The current Irish GP14 fleet is so strong the whole way through it, that there will be many teams aiming to compete in the top 10
This Saturday the Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club is hosting the Ridgeway GP14 Irish National Championships on Belfast Lough and event director Gerry Reid casts his eye over the 40-boat fleet and looks at some of the runners and…
Dun Laoghaire Harbour provided sufficient shelter in strong south east winds to enable DBSC Tuesday night dinghy racing to take place
Up to 17 races have now been sailed in the 2022 AIB DBSC Dinghy series on Dublin Bay. Last night's racing for PY, RS Aero, Fireball, Radial, Laser Standard and IDRA 14 took place in strong and gusty south easterly winds racing took…
Participants in a previous RYANI Women on Water Festival
RYA Northern Ireland has announced this year’s Women on Water Festival, which is set to be an action-packed day at Donaghadee Sailing Club. This event, which will take place on Saturday 23 July, will be the third festival to run…
Class One J109s in the 2018 Royal St George Yacht Club Regatta on Dublin Bay
After the disappointment of the blowout of last weekend’s (June 25) RIYC Regatta, this weekend’s Royal St George big event on Saturday 2 July is much anticipated on Dublin Bay. The Frank Keane BMW George Regatta brings to a close the…
Controlled excitement – 1720s in Cork Harbour in a breeze that does them justice
When anybody asks how the concept of the Cork 1720 Sportsboat Class first came to see the light of day in Crosshaven in the early 1990s, the response these days tends to be “Which version of the story would you…
 The Tribal crew (from left) Liam Burke, Orla Conneely, Niall Thornton, Ally O'Sullivan, Ryan Mill and Yannick Lemonnier, missing from photo are crew Tom Murphy and Seàn Lemonnier
Galway Bay Sailing Club is celebrating an overall win for its Tribal crew at the WIORA championships hosted by the Royal Western Yacht Club on the Shannon Estuary last weekend.  The well campaigned Farr 31 took home first place in Class One…
The three-day Irish Topper National Championships will be held this weekend by Waterford Harbour Sailing Club at Dunmore East
A fleet of more than 50 Toppers from ten sailing clubs around the country will be arriving in Dunmore East on Friday to compete in the three-day Irish Topper National Championships, from July 1 to 3 at Waterford Harbour Sailing Club…

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]

Featured Sailing School

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Featured Clubs

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Howth Yacht Club
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