Entries for Sovereigns Cup exceeds 100-boat mark

Four-day event at Kinsale will see biggest turnout on south coast this year

Sovereigns Cup at Kinsale this year will see the biggest boat turnout on the south coast

In a further indicator of recovery in the sailing and the wider economy, entries for next month’s biennial Sovereigns Cup at Kinsale have exceeded the 100-boat mark.

Teams from every county, as well as England, Scotland Wales, have entered as the four-day series includes the Irish Cruiser Racing Association’s (ICRA) annual IRC national championships.

At 105-boats as of this week, organisers are predicting that, with almost a full month remaining for late entries, possibly another 20 crews are waiting to enter which would bring the turnout level with last year’s event at the Royal Irish Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire.

Even at the current fleet-size, this year’s championship will be the biggest turnout on the south coast.


So far, 12 entries are listed in Class Zero and 20 boats will each compete in Classes One and Four while the others should also reach that level next month. Racing is also provided for White Sails only crews opting for more relaxed competition.

Meanwhile, the Kinsale Yacht Club event will coincide with the closing stage of the Volvo Ocean Race that this week returned to Europe after the final trans-oceanic leg from Newport, Rhode Island, to Lisbon.

Overall leader Ian Walker on Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing with Irish veteran Justin Slattery on board, slipped-up on weather strategy midway across and even languished in last place for the leg that put their overall lead in jeopardy.

A late surge saw the Emirati-flagged entry improve to fourth place on the final approach to the Portuguese coast on Tuesday when Slattery predicted in his The Irish Times log a shake-up of the standings in the River Tagus.

Prove accurate

In the last event, the leaders “parked-up” within sight of the finish and the Cork sailor’s prediction for this edition was to prove accurate.

In the event however, Walker’s team was relegated to fifth place for the leg when Charlie Enright’s Alvimedica surged past with slightly better wind than the becalmed race leaders.

Walker’s overall lead shrinks to five points with just two short sprint-legs remaining before the final In-Port Race in Gothenburg.

David Branigan

David Branigan

David Branigan is a contributor on sailing to The Irish Times