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Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

Irish Sailing Classes. Yacht, One Design & Dinghy Racing News, Class by Class
Lynn Kerin accepts the Loving Cup on behalf of her children Tom and Eva, husband Andrew and father Jonathan O’Rourke at the DBSC Mermaid prizegiving from Class Captain Paul Smith
Having sailed in combined races with Squibs in the 2021 season, the DBSC Mermaid Class had its prizegiving with the Squib class in the National Yacht Club last Friday, 25th February. The 17ft clinker-built dinghy designed by J. B. Kearney…
Stuart Childerley - Double Olympian turned offshore and one-design keelboat champion
Highly regarded international sailor, race officer and administrator Stuart Childerley will be the new Secretary of the J Class Association and is set to play a key role in delivering a bright, stable long-term future for one of sailing’s most…
Peter and Robert O'Leary will race their Star keelboat 'Ninky Nonk' in March's Bacardi Cup in Florida
Brothers Peter and Robert O'Leary sailing under the Baltimore Sailing Club burgee will race their Star keelboat 'Ninky Nonk' in the 95th Bacardi Cup in Florida next week. Joining them at the Coconut Grove event is their father, Royal Cork ace…
Peter Dunlop and Victoria Cox’s champion J/109 Mojito is entered into June's Wave Regatta at Howth
Peter Dunlop and Victoria Cox’s champion J/109 ‘Mojito’ is the first UK entry for this year's Wave Regatta in Howth Yacht Club in June. The Pwllheli Sailing Club boat from North Wales is a regular and prominent force on the…
GP14 Ireland is represented on The GP14 Association stand with Hon. Sec Andy Johnston (left) joining International Class President Curly Morris
The RYA Dinghy show is currently underway across in Farnborough in the UK and with the GP14 World Championships coming to Skerries in August, GP14 Ireland was represented on The GP14 Association stand with Hon. Sec Andy Johnston (who reports…
Noel Colclough and Rupert Westrup from Periquin were winners of the DBSC Squib class Cocktail Shaker Trophy
The Dublin Bay Sailing Club (DBSC) Squib fleet had their annual prizegiving at the National Yacht Club on 25 February 2022. The two-man keelboat fleet say they expect to increase the number of boats competing in Dublin Bay for 2022…
RS Aero Demo Day
Howth Yacht Club has announced that three RS Aero rigs will be available to demo in the harbour on Sunday 27 March. The demonstrations will run from 11am to 2pm on the day. Email the organiser Daragh Sheridan for more…
Sigma 33 - Squawk 2 (Paul and Emma Prentice)
In this post lockdown era, there are so many events on offer that sailors keen to compete in the big competitions are spoilt for choice, and this has never been so true as with the Sigma 33 class this season.…
The Beneteau First 21 class will race for National Championship honours as part of the RIYC's Dun Laoghaire Cup in May
The Royal Irish Yacht Club will host a four-class Dun Laoghaire Cup for sportsboats in May with racing for 1720, SB20, J80 and Beneteau First 21 classes.  The 1720 East Coast Championship, the J80 East Coast Championship and First 21 National…
Kinsale Yacht Club U25 sailors celebrate the launch of the new club J/24
Kinsale Yacht Club has launched its Under 25 Team’s J24 and named it ‘Kinsailor.’ The boat is the last J24 to have been built by Jeremy Rogers, who also built Contessas, on the Isle of Wight. “At 31 years old…
The RS Games run from July 21 to the 5th August at Weymouth
This summer, over 1500 competitors in 1000 RS boats will be descending on Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy for the dinghy sailing event of the year – the 2022 RS Games. In true RS style, it is set to…
The record number of 420s lined up at Kinsale for the first class training session of 2022
21 420 racing dinghies have arrived at Kinsale Yacht Club for their annual February Mid-Term coaching camp. This record number has doubled in number since it was last held at Schull in 2019. Boats have travelled from Wexford Harbour, Waterford Harbour,…
The fourth Cascais SB20 Winter Series had its debut postponed. The 22 boats of the popular class were forced to stay ashore on the opening day due to the strong wind that blew in Cascais on Saturday. On the second…
The FF 2022 European Championship and 75th Anniversary Race, will be hosted by Cowes Corinthian Yacht Club from 20 to 26 August 2022
The International Flying Fifteen 75th Anniversary Regatta, incorporating the 2022 European Championship and 75th Anniversary Race, will be hosted by Cowes Corinthian Yacht Club from 20 to 26 August 2022. Over the week before from 18 to 22 August, there…
Kevin and Debbie Aitken’s First 36.7 Animal
The RC35 class look like putting up a great show at Royal Ulster Yacht Club’s Bangor Town Regatta in June. At the moment the regatta website says, “We look forward to seeing all the entries and will be posting the entry…
Lough Ree Yacht Club
The Afloat.ie-administered “Sailing Club of the Year” award has been running continuously and successfully since 1979, yet in all its 43 years of honouring outstanding achievement across a wide range of criteria by Ireland’s diverse and nationally-spread yacht and sailing…

Irish Sailing Classes and Association – There’s no shortage of one-design classes from which to choose and each gives its enthusiasts great competition, fun and camaraderie, writes Graham Smith in this review of the classes. 

One-design racing is where it all starts. It is, after all, where all the top sailors earned their stripes, battling away for line honours without a thought for a handicapper’s calculator wiping away a hard-fought victory!

Indeed, you could count on less than one hand the number of top Irish sailors who didn’t cut their teeth in a one-design dinghy! Just think of Cudmore, Barrington, Watson, Wilkins, Hennessy and Dix to name a few and you realise that they honed their skills in everything from Enterprises to Lasers and a lot in between.

At present count, there are a little over 30 one-design classes in Ireland, split almost evenly between dinghies and keelboats, a statistic which might raise a few eyebrows. They range from the long-established Mermaids, IDRA14s and Dragons to the newer additions like Fevas, Topaz and RS Elite. They all fill a particular need and give their owners and crews considerable enjoyment.

Many have attracted their World or European Championships to Irish waters over the years and while 2009 is notable for a lack of such events here, the following year will see the Etchells Worlds at Howth and perhaps a few other international regattas too.

In addition to the review, we asked each class to complete a questionnaire giving details of their fleet numbers, whether they were on a growth pattern or holding their own, so we could highlight those ‘on the up’ and those remaining static in terms of numbers. The older traditional designs, as you might imagine, fall into the latter category, although that’s not a negative!

CLASS REVIEW  The State of the Classes – League Table (as at February 2009)

S = Static; U = Up/growing

275     Optimist   U

200+   Laser   S

189     Mermaid   S

160     Flying Fifteen   S

130     RS Feva   U

115     Shannon One Design    U

100+   Mirror   S

100+   Topper   U

99       Topaz   U

94       Laser SB3   U

87       GP14   U

85       Squib   S

70       Fireball   S

70       Ruffian   S

60       J24   S

60       Shipman   S

52       Dragon   S

50       RS400/200   S

50       420    U

43       Multihulls    U

42       Dragon    S

40       Water Wags    U

40       Wayfarer    S

34       IDRA14    U

33       Puppeteer    U

28       Etchells    S

27       E-Boat    U

26       Glen    S

25       Enterprise    S

18       Sigma 33    S

18       Howth 17    U

13       RS Elite    U

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