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Sailing on Saturday with WM Nixon
The J/109 Jelly Baby (Brian Jones) personifies the spirit of Cork sailing, which this weekend is being celebrated with the two-day AIB RCYC Tricentenary+1 Regatta
There's something about the last weekend of August which makes it a specially pivotal time in Irish sailing. And in this weird pandemic-emergence period, there's an extra sense of individually-tailored controlled events being added to the programme to meet immediate…
Two Commodores – Jonathan Nicholson (DBSC Commodore 2018-2020) and Ann Kirwan (DBSC Commodore 2020-2022) at this week's presentation of the Mitsubishi Motors
Dublin Bay Sailing Club is the current Mitsubishi Motors Sailing Club of the Year, and yesterday (Friday), their Commodore Ann Kirwan took over custodianship of the well-travelled ship's wheel trophy. It dates back to 1979 in a unique and informal…
The Lads with the Ladies Cup. The Bicentenary of Sligo YC's Ladies Cup – the world's oldest perpetual sailing trophy - was celebrated with it being the award for the J/24 Nationals 2021 last weekend, and the winning boat Headcase – the defending champion – is an all-Ireland project, with (left to right) Cillian Dickson (Lough Ree YC & Howth YC), Sam O'Byrne (Howth YC) Louis Mulloy (Mayo SC) with the famous Cup, Marcus Ryan, and Ryan Glynn
The Irish weather is no respecter of history, and sailing history in particular. Apart from the fact that it regularly appears to break meteorological records with an insouciant disregard for their significance and the patient effort that our ancestors put…
Fifty years ago to the day, Jack MacKeown's S&S 34 Korsar (RStGYC, sailed by John Bourke) is seen from Ronnie Wayte's Hustler 35 Setanta of Skerries as they duel their way westward into the Needles Channel in the early stages of the 1971 Fastnet Race, with the great Ted Turner's 12 Metre American Eagle thundering through with a performance which will take line honours and set a new course record
Time was when doing the Fastnet Race seemed a natural part of sailing life. The world was young, yet we'd sufficient maturity (no sniggering at the back, please) to appreciate the full meaning of the experience as a uniquely significant…
Home again. After an absence of 35 years - and all of 116 years after she first sailed here - the restored Dublin Bay 21 Naneen sails past Dun Laoghaire's East Pier lighthouse with a 21-gun salute
There's something about the way that Steve Morris and his boat-building team in Kilrush are restoring the 1903-vintage Dublin Bay 21s that speaks to people with only a vague notion of the sea and sailing. The class association circled around…
The mixed tapestry of Irish sailing – Olympians Finn Lynch and Annalise Murphy winning a race in Dun Laoghaire in a classic Dublin Bay Water Wag
The start of the Sailing Olympics tomorrow (Sunday) at Enoshima, fifty kilometres from central Tokyo, may seem to be the beginning of a boat event about as different as humanly possible from the staging next Friday (July 30th) of an…
Glen Class OD revelling in Dublin Bay sailing. Dating from 1947, the class now show the signs of successfully emerging from limbo into classic status
The cherished local One-Design classes of Ireland have never been more relevant than they are now, in these crazy times of soaring-graph numbers when local is good. The expectation of staying local, while making do with fairly modest socialising and…
Was your journey really necessary?
It has been said here before, but it's worth saying again – on Thursday evenings in normal times in summer, the Dublin Bay Sailing Club programme is so popular that the fleet out racing would be considered a splendid turnout…
Serious picture. The new billboard posting on Howth YC's gable wall carries the hopes of a large community
It's a serious-looking big poster that they've had newly-displayed for the past three days on Howth Yacht Club's gable wall. But then, the prospect of Rob Dickson of Howth and Sean Waddilove of Skerries representing Ireland in the Tokyo Olympics…
Ding-dong at Foynes – Gala Racing (Simon McGibney, Foynes YC) and Lola (Luke McBride, Sligo YC) trying their own side of the beat in search of success in last weekend's J/24 Southerns at Foynes on the Shannon Estuary. Alas, it was not to be – this wasn't the win move that seems to be promised here
The National YC's Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race of Wednesday, June 9th – just two days after such things became permissible on June 7th - may have been hailed here as "a spectacular pillar event to launch the 2021 Irish…
An impressive threesome enjoying each other’s company at the National YC in Dun Laoghaire – Olympic Laser sailor Finn Lynch, mentor and motivator Carmel Winkelmann, and Olympic Silver Medallist Annalise Murphy
Carmel Winkelmann of Dun Laoghaire, who has died in her 93rd year, was a universe, a force of nature, and an indefatigable and resilient optimist who carved her own unique course through Irish sailing at every level for sixty years…
Flying the flag……new spinnaker for Ireland's Olympic 49ers Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove, who are currently training in Santander in Spain for the Tokyo Olympics which will dominate late July and early August
When the Royal Cork Yacht Club was undergoing one of its infusions of new life and ideas during the early 1840s in order to keep up the necessary levels of vitality in a remarkable organisation which dates back to the…
While Paul O'Higgins' JPK 10.80 Rockabill VI (RIYC) – the defending champion in next week's NYC Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race – is clearly fond of a good breeze of wind, her experienced crew have shown they can stay ahead in lighter airs
Way back whenever, as each wave of COVID seemed to sweep over its predecessor with a power worthy of Aileens herself, the incurable optimists among Ireland's sailors continued to hope that by some miracle we'd have reached a stage on…
Bring it on…..for the past 14 month, the nearest we've got to being In Real Life is through the national ID letters on our sails, as seen in the First 31.7s racing in Dublin Bay
While there may have been nothing exactly like the current schedule-wrecking Pandemic before, in times past - nationally and internationally - we've come through comparable catastrophes. And enough of previous generations have survived to tell the tale and provide guidance…
Cometh the hour, cometh the boat. The Laser may have been around for more than fifty years, but thanks to being solo sailed, it was one of the real
"Sailing is a lifestyle activity which evolves as an expression of a vehicle sport afloat". There you go. So now you know. And please note that it's "lifestyle" and not "lifetime", though the latter also applies. Yet you were thinking…
An inspiration in dark times – Rob Dickson and Sam Waddilove saw the year of Olympic postponement as an opportunity to up their game to the stage where they secured the Men's 49er place in Lanzarote
Time was when the question of whether the 2020-Olympics-in-2021 should or should not be staged would have been described as the Elephant in the Room, suggesting the presence of an imponderable so large and unthinkable that the sanity-seeking majority of…

William M Nixon has been writing about sailing in Ireland and internationally for many years, with his work appearing in leading sailing publications on both sides of the Atlantic. He has been a regular sailing columnist for four decades with national newspapers in Dublin, and has had several sailing books published in Ireland, the UK, and the US. An active sailor, he has owned a number of boats ranging from a Mirror dinghy to a Contessa 35 cruiser-racer, and has been directly involved in building and campaigning two offshore racers. His cruising experience ranges from Iceland to Spain as well as the Caribbean and the Mediterranean, and he has raced three times in both the Fastnet and Round Ireland Races, in addition to sailing on two round Ireland records. A member for ten years of the Council of the Irish Yachting Association (now the Irish Sailing Association), he has been writing for, and at times editing, Ireland's national sailing magazine since its earliest version more than forty years ago