O’Leary’s Royal Cork Yacht Club contend in New York YC Invitational Cup

Women’s team takes UK Open Keelboat title as Irish crews impress internationally

Anthony O'Leary's Royal Cork Yacht Club (RCYC) team need to continue their consistent performance off Rhode Island this morning if the sole Irish entry are to stay in contention at New York Yacht Club's (NYYC) Invitational Cup.

It’s one of a number of late season achievements for Irish crews competing on foreign waters this week.

O’Leary, a regular at the Big Apple event, is sailing with sons Nicholas and Robert and the nine-man Crosshaven crew lie second after five races sailed to Canada’s Larchmont Yacht Club in a fleet of 20 Swan 42s.

Having finished fifth and eighth in the first two editions of this Corinthian event, the Irish national cruiser champion is aiming to make it third time lucky in Newport tomorrow as a majority of the RCYC team has competed in at least one of the previous events.


An Irish women's sailing team skippered by Laura Dillon of Howth has won the UK's Women's Open Keelboat championship. The Dublin crew, with tactician Laura Fitzpatrick also from Howth Yacht Club and Carol O'Kelly from Dún Laoghaire, counted four first places and two second places in the no discard event at Hamble River Sailing Club.

In France, Irish SB20 champion Ben Duncan, sailing for his native New Zealand, is lying fifth from 90 starters at the class world championships in Hyeres.

Mistral winds
Duncan is crewed by Dubliners Joe Turner and Aidan MacSweeny in a series battered by strong Mistral winds on the Cote D'Azur.

Two women's Olympic skiff sailing campaigns have merged in a bid to put Ireland on the 49erfx start line, a debut class for Rio 2016. Helmswoman Andrea Brewster and crew Saskia Tidey have teamed up as a new combination seeking the Olympic qualification standard.

In one of the first qualification events for next year's Optimist European dinghy championships in Dún Laoghaire, Munster Optimist sailors dominated last weekend's 138-boat breezy Leinster championships off Howth.

In the senior fleet national champion Harry Durcan won out, with Royal Cork club mate Chris Bateman the junior fleet winner. The Regatta fleet was won by Conor Gorman of Dún Laoghaire.

Beijing Olympian Ciara Peelo, a former Optimist sailor, is organising a reunion of Irish Optimist sailors young and old on October 12th at Malahide Yacht Club.

"'The idea is to get as many people from the 70s, 80s, 90s back together and catch up," says Peelo.

Les Glenans closes two bases here
Les Glenans, the French sail training association, one of the biggest sail training establishments in Ireland, is to close its two bases here at the end of the month.

In July, the recession-hit school warned of the possible closure of its Collanmore and Baltimore schools and this week the French-based board of directors voted 10-4 in favour of closing both, ceasing all Irish activity after 44 years.

A weather window for a bid on the Round Ireland speed record closed last weekend before Sidney Gavignet and Damian Foxall's French-based Oman Sail could get to the Dublin Bay start line.

Instead of the circumnavigation of Ireland, the MOD70 trimaran completed a training run between its home base at L’Orient, France, and the Fastnet Rock off the Cork coast.

After another night of close racing in the Clipper Round the World Race it was all change at the top of the leaderboard in the race from Brest to Rio de Janeiro.

Henri Lloyd has pinching the lead from Great Britain, with a lead of over 10 miles from Derry/Londonderry skippered by Seán McCarter.

David O'Brien

David O'Brien

David O'Brien, a contributor to The Irish Times, is a former world Fireball sailing champion and represented Ireland in the Star keelboat at the 2000 Olympics