Recent eNews:


One year on...

16 August 2017

One year on... Today marks one year since our last Olympic success and only 1072 days until our next!  Read our eNews story here

 


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Ireland takes 1 and 2 on the podium in Douarnenez, France

26 July 2017
Ireland takes 1 and 2 on the podium in Douarnenez, France. Read our e-news story here
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Irish Sailing Foundation Spring 2017

13 April 2017
Irish Sailing Foundation Spring 2017. Read our eNewsletter here
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Happy St. Patricks Day! Annalise Murphy is Grand Marshal in Dublin St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

17 March 2017
Happy St. Patricks Day! Annalise Murphy is Grand Marshal in Dublin St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Read our e-news story here
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Colm Barrington Elected as Olympic Council of Ireland’s First Vice President

09 February 2017
Irish Sailing Foundation Chairman Colm Barrington Elected as Olympic Council of Ireland’s First Vice President.  Read full article from Afloat here.
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Interview with Colm Barrington

14 November 2016

Interview with Colm Barrington, Chairman of the Olympic Steering Group and the Irish Sailing Foundation prior to Annelise Murphy’s Olympic medal in Rio

In this interview with Afloat.ie in July 2016, Colm outlined his hopes for the Olympic Regatta, the future funding arrangements for Irish Olympic sailing and explained what an ‘elusive’ Olympic sailing medal would mean to Ireland.

 

Q: In your tenure as Chair of the Olympic Steering Group, there have been some excellent performances. Have these results helped with generating tangible support for the current Olympic campaigns?

 

A: Most importantly, the results achieved through the ISA Performance Pathway have resulted in greater competition for Olympic places and so have helped to up everyone’s game. This has been most evident in the Laser and Laser Radial classes where we had competition for places. As our Pathway sailors mature we believe that this trend will increase giving us several young Irish sailors competing in each of the 4 Olympic classes.

As regards financial support, in every Olympic cycle interest peaks around the time of the Olympics. Sport Ireland has assessed our progress on a year by year basis and even though results have been really strong at Youth and Senior level it has not had an impact in terms of funding increases. However, this has to be viewed in terms of the overall level of government support for sport which has remained static over the last four years in the difficult economic circumstances. Relatively speaking sailing has done well in comparison with other sports. With the number of squads in our Pathway increasing it means there is no tangible increase in funding at an individual level even though more sailors are now benefitting from the programme.

 

Q: How do you see the role of the Irish Sailing Foundation in developing a sustainable and repeatable support structure?

 

A: The Irish Sailing Foundation was set up to support, develop and make sustainable a repeatable structure that is already in place with the ISA Performance Pathway. The Pathway is the project that our Performance Director James O’Callaghan and his team of coaches have implemented over the last ten years. The success of this programme is clear to see – in the last four years we have medalled three times at youth worlds. It is now our job to make sure these talented youngsters progress. The goal of the Foundation is to widen access to the Pathway and High Performance sailing to many more young Irish people, regardless of their means.

 

Q: What would be the impact of a Rio medal?

 

A: I believe that the impact on sailing in Ireland of an Olympic medal would be hugely positive. Take the public interest generated in women’s boxing by Katie Taylor winning Gold at the London Olympics and in women’s rugby after we beat New Zealand. Ireland has not won a sailing medal at the Olympics since 1980 and despite the fact that our sailors have won World Championships, European Championships and World Cup medals in recent years, sailing is still very much below the public horizon. We have the potential to deliver a medal which would help attract a wider audience. When Annalise Murphy came 4th at the London Olympics, there was a huge increase in the number of young Irish girls with Olympic ambitions. A medal would bring sailing to the attention of a wider group which would benefit our clubs, our sailing schools, our training programmes, the ISA and the sailing community in general.

 

Personally, I would be delighted if we could get that elusive medal. I would be particularly delighted for the athletes involved, for their families, for their trainers, for their mates in the training programmes and for all those who have supported them through the many hard years of training and competing, both financially and emotionally. This is my last chance as chair of the OSG as I will step down after twelve years shortly after the games end in Rio. I will remain as chair of the Foundation and I believe that a medal in Rio would help us achieve our fundraising goals.


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Olympic Silver in Rio 2016

09 September 2016

Irish sailing reached a new high in the summer of 2016. Annalise Murphy sailing the Laser Radial became the first female sailor from Ireland to win an Olympic medal. The silver she secured was also Ireland’s first in 36 years. David Wilkins and Jamie Wilkinson won a silver medal at the Moscow 1980 Olympic games.

 

At the conclusion of the race Murphy said “she did not know whether to laugh or cry” such was her elation. The sense of relief was palpable. Murphy had come agonisingly close at the London 2012 Olympics but in the end came home with 4th place, the infamous “leather medal.” Fours years wiser this time she was not going to let the opportunity pass her by. Five of the best sailors in the world had the opportunity to take one of the three medals available in the final race 1cjnl6b. Conditions were light and tricky and Annalise sailed a masterclass.

 

Reflecting on the medal in the weeks following the games ISA Performance Director James O’Callaghan said ” the medal for us represents proof of concept.” O’Callaghan has been largely responsible for implementing a system and structure into Irish sailing which has been delivering outstanding results in the last six years. Murphy herself entered the programme in 2005 under the tutelage of race coach Rory Fitzpatrick. He has been with her every step of the way on the eleven year journey. Talent takes time to deliver and considerable amount of blood sweat and tears, Murphy’s achievement is testament to this.

 

Talking to O’Callaghan it is clear he believes this is the beginning of a new chapter in Irish sailing rather that end of one. “Annalise’s silver is going to be the catalyst for many more achievements by Irish sailors.” Any neutral observer at the teams homecoming could not fail to have been impressed by the sheer number of children gathered to greet their olympic heroes home. Sailors from far and wide had gathered to get a fist bump or even better an autograph from the 2016 team.

 

It is hard to argue with the logic, all of the team in Rio achieved personal bests including another medal race finalist in the 49er class. When you consider Ireland also just won it’s fourth world medal at youth level in the last 5 years it is easy to understand why #futureisbright is used repeatedly across Irish sailing’s social media platforms.

 

On the challenges ahead O’Callaghan points to the fact that the system is now producing so many sailors with outstanding results the difficulty will be resourcing the campaigns properly. This was a challenge Irish sailing had foreseen and is one of the main reasons the Irish Sailing Foundation was set up. The sailors have delivered on their potential with more to come now it is over to the stakeholders and individuals passionate about the success of Irish sport to get behind this juggernaut.

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Seaton and McGovern take GOLD in 49er at Princesa Sofia regatta

05 April 2016

In a thrilling medal race final on the Bay of Palma today, Providence Team IRL’s Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern won the Gold medal in the 49er skiff event at the Princess Sofia Regatta site here.

 

The veteran Olympians had initially completed the 15 race series on Friday night, apparently with a commanding lead that assured the Gold medal.

 

But in a late evening twist, London 2012 Olympic Gold medallists Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen had an earlier race disqualification reinstated that changed the score. While an Irish podium result was certain, Gold required placing eighth or better in today’s medal race decider.

 

Seaton and McGovern started cleanly and led the fleet to the first mark but touched it slightly which obliged them to take a penalty turn. Their lead slipped and suddenly they were ninth out of ten boats.

 

But the Irish pair worked their way steadily up the fleet to finish sixth, one place behind Outteridge and Jensen and sufficient to claim the Gold medal. However, wary of the previous evening’s experience, it wasn’t until after their coach verified the result that the celebrations could begin.

 

Seaton and McGoverns’ previous best results include Silver at the French Olympic classes regatta in 2014 while they placed 14th at the London 2012 Olympics, their debut appearance.

 

“This is a super result for Ryan and Matt, not least because it’s an Olympic year but also for the quality of the competition in Palma,” commented James O’Callaghan, ISA Performance Director. “Winning a Gold medal four months before the Olympic regatta in Rio is a major boost to their campaign. However, there is still a lot of hard work to be done.”

 

The Irish crew are training partners with Australians Outteridge and Jensen who took the Silver medal in Palma while Spain’s Diego Botin and Iago Lopez took Bronze in the closely contested final.

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Andrea Brewster & Saskia Tidey Qualify for 2016 Olympic Games in 49erFX

24 March 2016

Following a four month delay, World Sailing (formerly ISAF) has confirmed that Ireland’s Andrea Brewster and Saskia Tidey have qualified for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in the 49erFX skiff event.

 

News today that Africa would not enter the 49erFX skiff event released another Olympic place and as the next in line based on the world championships in Argentina, Providence Team IRL’s Brewster and Tidey have secured qualification for Ireland.

 

The pair delivered a strong final day performance at the 2015 World Championships in Argentina and appeared to secure a berth when they finished 14th overall.  However, a rules protest ashore meant they would have to compete for the final European place at the games in next week’s Princess Sofia Regatta in Mallorca.

 

The pair will shortly be nominated as part of the Irish Sailing Association Performance squad to the Olympic Council of Ireland for inclusion in the team competing in Rio 2016

 

“This is a hugely significant development for Andrea and Saskia who earned qualification by fighting to deliver a strong finish to last year’s world championships,” commented James O’Callaghan, ISA Performance Manager.  “It’s a very emotional day for them and they can now concentrate fully on building toward their Rio goals.”

 

Brewster and Tidey will be among 13 Irish sailors competing at the Princess Sofia Regatta that begins on the Bay of Palma on Monday 28th March and runs for six days.  A record entry of 775 and more than 1,000 athletes will compete in ten Olympic disciplines.

 

Ireland has now qualified for representation in four sailing events at the Rio 2016 Olympics including the Men’s 49er skiff, Laser Standard, Laser Radial as well as the 49erFX women’s event.

 

Notes

 

Irish Olympic Qualification

  • Annalise Murphy – Qualified the nation in the Laser Radial
  • James Espey – Qualified the nation in the Laser Standard
  • Ryan Seaton & Matt McGovern – Qualified the nation in the 49er
  • Andrea Brewster & Saskia Tidey – Qualified the nation in the 49erFX

*Trials are ongoing to determine which sailors will represent Ireland at the 2016 Games.

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ISA Pathway Spring Training

23 February 2016

The February mid-term break saw over 220 young sailors make their way to West Cork to take part in training camps for the ISA pathway classes.

 

In Baltimore, 140 optimist sailors attended the now famous IODAI mid term break camp. Meanwhile over in Schull 30 lasers trained with the regional squads, and 14 420s took part in their training camp before the Munster Championships.

 

It was also great to see clubs leading the coaching initiative with 14 Toppers from both RCYC and HYC making the trip and taking advantage of the excellent conditions down on Schull harbour.

 

Conditions were varied and temperatures mild allowing for a great week of sailing to get everyone on the water and look towards the Pathway Nationals which will take place in Howth Yacht Club from the 31st of March to the 4th of April.

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Seaton & McGovern Secure A Top 10 Finish

15 February 2016

Team IRL pairing of Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern secured 10th place in the 49er World Championship on Sunday in Clearwater, Florida. Following a mixed week of results, which included a bullet (1st place), a 2nd and several top 10 finishes, the Ballyholme Yacht Club skiff duo qualified for the medal racing on the final day and secured two 6th place finishes to cap off a better than expected week.

 

Having already qualified for the Olympic games, Seaton & McGovern were using the regatta as preparation for the ultimate test this summer. Former World Cup silver medallists and Olympians at the London 2012 games, the Irish 49er skiff pairing were up against the world’s best sailors, including Australian Olympic champions Nathan Outteridge & Iain Jensen and the unbeaten New Zealand pairing of Peter Burling & Blair Tuke, who have not lost a competitive race in over 3 years on the global circuit, and took home this championship with some ease.

 

 

In the female discipline, 49erFX pairing of Andrea Brewster & Saskia Tidey had to withdraw from the World Championships due to an ankle injury Brewster sustained in the lead up to the recent World Cup event in Miami. Ireland’s only senior 49erFX team will instead focus on getting ready for an Olympic qualification battle. The Royal Irish Yacht Club pairing narrowly missed out on qualification in November last at the World Championships in Argentina. Now one European place remains available, which they can still compete for at the Princess Sofia regatta in late March in Palma, Mallorca.

 

Ryan Seaton commented on this year’s championships: “We feel the last few months of training and competition have been productive and the worlds gave us another chance to prepare for the Olympics against the best sailors in the world. We are now looking forward to the World Cup series and will continue the good work we have done this week.”

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Elmes & O'Sullivan Take Worlds Bronze

03 January 2016

Langkawi, Malaysia, Douglas Elmes and Colin O’Sullivan secured a Bronze medal at the Youth World Sailing Championships. It caps off another remarkable year in Irish sailing. Irish sailors, in recent years have become accustomed to standing on the podium at this prestigious event. The Howth duo’s medal is Ireland’s third in four years – it is however the first medal achieved in a two person boat since Laura Dillion and Ciara Peelo achieved the feat in 1996.

 

The Howth Yacht Club team held off a much fancied Australian pairing to finish a point ahead and take the Bronze medal for Ireland. The pair started the week brightly, claiming a number of top 10 finishes, including a first place on day two. With mixed conditions on the race course, skills were truly tested. All week Elmes and O’Sullivan progressively climbed the leaderboard to secure third place heading into the final day’s racing. After a tense final race where the Aussies mounted a strong challenge, ultimately the boys were not going to be denied their podium position.

 

 

In addition to the 420 success, Irish sailors Aisling Keller and Liam Glynn had excellent results in the stiffest of competitions. In the Girls Laser Radial class, Lough Derg’s Keller finished strongly to earn a 10th place overall – the best result in a generation of youth females. Glynn finished the event strongly and jumped back into the top 15.

 

The Irish Sailing Association’s Performance Director, James O’Callaghan commented on their result: “2015 has been a fantastic year for Irish Youth sailing. Doug and Colin’s result is the standout of many great performances. Success at the Youth Worlds is rare and with the largest fleet ever to compete, this year’s championships were tougher than ever.”

 

Following this result, Elmes & O’Sullivan’s 420 coach, and former Olympian Ross Killian described the path to their success: “Doug and Colin have been working really hard for the last 2 years to podium at this regatta. The last few months have been particularly challenging from a training point of view with all the storms at home, but at every opportunity the guys were on the water. This really paid off this week, where they showed great control on the water at the most challenging and unique of all youth regattas.”

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Murphy Takes The Lead In Rio Trial

22 December 2015

Murphy’s class shines through in first trial regatta

 

Following a week of sailing at the Copa Brasil in Rio, Providence Team IRL sailors and London 2012 Olympians, Annalise Murphy and James Espey take the lead their respective trials.

 

It was an act of sportsmanship that was unnecessary but reflects the class of Annalise Murphy. Her rival for the Olympic berth, Aoife Hopkins, broke her mast and would have been unable to compete in the last race had it not been for Murphy’s intervention. Annalise lent the young Howth sailor her own spare mast. Aoife gratefully accepted the generous offer and went on to post her best race of the event finishing 15th. Murphy’s class shone in other ways too during the regatta, which regularly saw temperatures over 40 degrees and light, fickle winds. She placed 3rd in one of the ‘light’ races but it was her consistency throughout the week that will be a real boost to her confidence coming into 2016. Annalise finished 15th and Aoife 28th overall. The second trial event is the ISAF World Cup regatta in Miami at the end of January.

 

In the men’s trial, James Espey holds pole position by the tiniest of margins. Espey finished in 38th while Finn Lynch finished 39th. Close behind was UCC scholarship student Fionn Lyden in 43rd. This effectively means the Men’s trials is very much still a three horse race. For Lynch it was a significant achievement to get to the start line, as only five weeks ago he dislocated his shoulder and was in a race against time to get fit, and only managed to make it with intensive rehabilitation. James Espey, Ireland’s 2012 Olympic representative will be drawing on all his experience to try and widen the gap at the next trial event – the Princess Sofia regatta in late March, in Palma, Mallorca. Overall, James Espey has 38 points, Finn Lynch 39 and Fionn Lyden 43.

 

Both Skiff campaigns also raced in Rio, and while overall results were not spectacular, there were positives. Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern were happy to bag a race win on the Olympic waters. Andrea Brewster and Saskia Tidey got to experience a Medal race final a feat they will hope to repeat next summer.

 

Standings after 1st Trial Regatta:

 

Laser Radial
• Annalise Murphy 15 points
• Aoife Hopkins 28 points

 

Laser Standard
• James Espey 38 points
• Finn Lynch 39 points
• Fionn Lyden 43 points.

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Irish Trio Qualify for Rio Paralympic Games

02 December 2015

Providence Team IRL sailors John Twomey, Austin O’Carroll and Ian Costello have qualified for the 2016 Paralympic Games, which takes place in Rio di Janeiro next September. This also marks a particularly special moment in Irish Paralympic history as Kinsale Yacht Club’s John Twomey (Helm) from Ballinhassig, Cork will now compete in a record 11th games.

 

The Sonar crew have qualified with a day to spare in the championships. The final race of this eleven race regatta takes place tomorrow at the earlier time of 11am (local time).
John Twomey, skipper of the Irish Sonar Paralympic team, said: “We have achieved what we came to Melbourne for, which is qualification for Rio 2016. We still have a lot of hard work to do starting with the final race of this regatta tomorrow.”

 

Commenting on the team’s qualification, ISA Performance Director, James O’Callaghan said:

 

“I’m delighted for the team, who have worked incredibly hard to get this far, and for John in particular – his achievement is one he, his family and the entire Irish Sailing community can be incredibly proud of.”

“This is a great result for John and his team. They have done it in style with a race to spare. It is fantastic that Ireland will now contest the Paralympic sailing event in Rio”

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4 World Championships And Rio Qualification

13 November 2015

Two Providence Team IRL crews will compete in the 49er World Championships from November 17-22 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Ireland’s 49erFX team of Andrea Brewster and Saskia Tidey will compete in the main event of the year in the 49er calendar, as will Ireland’s 49er team of Matt McGovern and Ryan Seaton.

 

The World Championships are a qualifier event for the Olympics in Rio next year, and sailors Andrea Brewster & Saskia Tidey are vying for a place in the games next summer. There are three places up for grabs and Team Brewster-Tidey may qualify the Nation for the Games with a strong showing.

 

SA Performance Director, James O’Callaghan gives us his November preview

 

On the laser front, the best female laser radial sailors in the world including Ireland’s Annalise Murphy will be sharpening their skills and tactics ahead of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games when the 2015 Laser Radial Women’s World Championships get underway in Mussanah, Oman, later this month.

 

This event is the second last Laser Radial World Championships before Olympic sailing starts on 15 August 2016, and the final qualifying event of the cycle, the 100 top Laser Radial sailors including London 2012 gold medallist Lijia Xu from China and Evi Van Acker from Belgium who is ranked world number one, will be arriving at Al Mussanah Sports City determined to leave their mark on this fiercely competitive fleet. In total, 100 sailors representing 50 nations will attend the 2015 Laser Radial Women’s World Championships. A further 39 coaches will be in attendance alongside other back up staff members of the national squads and Laser class officials.

 

Irish Paralympic Sailors, John Twomey, Ian Costelloe and Austin O’Carroll set off for Melbourne, Australia to compete in the 2015 Para Worlds Sailing Championships for a place on the start line in Rio next year. The final qualifying event takes place in Melbourne Australia from November 28th to the 3rd of December 2015.

 

The team compete in the 23 foot Sonar Class, which for Paralympic events is a two sails keelboat. The Irish team came 3rd in the ISAF sailing world-cup in Weymouth June 2015 and are currently ranked 5th in the world.

 

The Irish team will spend nearly four weeks in Australia as part of the qualifying preparation for the RIO 2016 Paralympic Games. The 2015 Para World Sailing Championships hosted by the Royal Yacht Club of Victoria will take place in Williamstown, Victoria, Australia. This event is the final qualifier for the RIO 2016 Paralympic Games.

 

John Twomey, from Ballinhassig Co. Cork, has been sailing since 1979, having competed in 10 Paralympic Games. Winning a Gold medal in Seoul 1988 and Bronze medal in Great Britain 1984 while throwing the discus and he has competed in the Sydney 2000, Athens 2004, Beijing 2008 and London 2012 Paralympics in sailing. If he successfully qualifies for Rio 2016 this will be his 11th Paralympic Games.

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ISA Performance Fantastic 5

08 September 2015

What a summer’s it’s been for Irish junior and youth performance sailing – from the hard work that went into training camps, to sailors being coached internationally and the logistics of getting over 100 sailors to the start-line; 2015 has proved to be another successful year on the pathway programme.

 

Five sailors from across the country made it into the top 10 across a number of European and world championship events in both Toppers and Lasers. The highlight of the summer was Howth Yacht Club’s Ewan McMahon claiming a silver medal at the U17 Radial Youth Europeans in Portugal. Ewan was unfortunate to miss out on a Gold medal, and but for a protest would have gone into the worlds as European champion. The World Championships also proved successful for Ewan, where he claimed a Bronze medal in Kingston, Canada.

 

Lough Derg Sailing Club’s Aisling Keller also placed well in a number of events, posting a 6th place at the Radial Youth Worlds in Canada and secured a top 10 finish at the Radial Youth Europeans in Portugal. Howth Yacht Club’s Aoife Hopkins also had a memorable summer, with a 9th place finish at the same Radial Youth European’s and following a successful Delta Lloyd Regatta in Holland, qualified for the ISAF World Cup event in Weymouth, England. Aoife fared well there and secured a number of finishes ahead of far more-seasoned competitors.

 

It’s fair to say that the future of Laser Radial sailing is in good hands with Nicole Hemeryck and Erica Ruigrok amongst others having excellent summers, finishing in the top 20 of the Worlds and Europeans, and consistently competing at the top end of the field in GOLD fleet races.

 

Geoff Power of Dunmore East Sailing Club also had a Topper World Championship to remember on Lake Garda in Italy, and for the majority of the week he was looking at a podium finish but was just pipped to bronze by one point.

 

The summer ended on a high note for the ISA Development squad with Carlow sailor Finn Lynch taking a 4th at the U21 Laser Worlds in Medemblik and a 5th place in the U21 European Championships in Murcia, Spain. Fionn Lyden also showed his potential with two very good weeks of sailing at the same events to record an 11 and 12 respectively.

From the 420 programme, the outstanding result of the season was Kiel week in Germany, which is regarded as the premier 420 regatta on the circuit, and this year out of 154 boats Team IRL finished an impressive 3rd and 5th.

 

Talent takes a long time and many hours of hard work to nurture and bring through. Ryan Seaton, Annalise Murphy and Saskia Tidey have all graduated from the ISA Academy to success on the international stage. In Providence Team IRL, these youngsters now have role models to aspire to and a well beaten path to follow.

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Big Month For Junior Sailors

14 August 2015

August is a big month for ISA academy and development sailors with training camps onshore and offshore, as well as international competition in Bulgaria, the Netherlands, Poland, Wales and Canada. This month sees the 29er Worlds in Pwllhli, Wales, from 8-14 August; the Optimist Worlds in Dziwnów, Poland from August 26 – Sep 4; the 420 Junior Europeans in Bulgaria from August 8-15; the 4.7 Youth Worlds Championships 6-14th August in the Netherlands and a Laser Radial Worlds in Kingston Canada 14-20 August.

  

This jam-packed August comes on the back of one of the busiest July’s in recent memory for ISA Perfomance teams. July saw young Irish sailors competing across the globe, from Portugal to Japan, and almost came to a close in spectacular fashion. For a few hours we all believed Ewan McMahon had become the latest success story from the ISA Pathway in claiming the u17 European Radial title in Viana do Castelo, Portugal. However, the wind was taken from our sails a few hours later when a final race protest meant the title was no longer Ireland bound.

 

Viana do Castelo also hosted the Radial Youth Europeans, where Aoife Hopkins was impressive, and Aishling Keller, despite starting slow put together a great string of results. They finished 9th and 10th respectively. You didn’t not have to go very far down the leaderboard to find more Irish female sailors – Nicole Hemeryck and Erica Ruigrok both finished in the top 20. The future of Irish ladies radial sailing is a bright one.

The busy period continued in impressive fashion with the Durcan twins from RCYC competing at the 29er European Championships, which ran from the 17-21 July in Medemblik, The Netherlands. They were the youngest qualifiers in GOLD fleet and finished in 25th position.

 

Next up we had the Optimist Europeans 17-24 July in Pwllhli, Wales, where we had 5 sailors in the top half, with lots of great individual race results, which indicates good future potential.

 

In lake Riva Del Garda, Italy, we had a large representation in the Topper World Championships which ran from the 17-24 July. For the majority of the week we had Geoff Power on the podium and he sailed an excellent regatta. In the end he was just pipped to bronze by one point.

 

And so, as the busy period drew to a close, all eyes moved to the other side of the World where we had two 420 teams competing at the World Championships in Castle Bay Karatsu, Japan from the 17-25 July. Douglas Elmes and Colin O’Sullivan recovered well from a pre event setback where Colin broke his toe – they soldiered on through the event and made GOLD fleet and finished a respectable 23rd. In the Ladies division Lizzie and Cara McDowell also made GOLD fleet and finished 19th overall.

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Rio Test Event – Team IRL Announced

07 August 2015

Sailing was one of the first sports to qualify for the Rio 2016 Olympics, with three boats qualifying the nation in Santander, Spain in September 2014 – Laser, Laser Radial and 49er. Providence Team IRL is hoping to qualify two more boats before the end of 2015 in the 49erFX class for the Olympics and Sonar for the Paralympics. The test event in Rio gives the Irish sailors a final opportunity to familiarise themselves with the environment they will experience at the Olympics next year.

 

The press conference featured Providence Team IRL sailors including Irish Olympian, Annalise Murphy (4th in London Olympics 2012); 2014 ISAF World Cup Silver Medalist Ryan Seaton (49er class); 10 time Paralympian John Twomey with crew; as well as Olympic hopefuls Andrea Brewster and Saskia Tidey (49er FX class) as they prepare for their upcoming Olympic qualification event.

 

 

 

In addition to the Providence Team IRL, the conference also featured members of the ISA Development Academy; all campaigning for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games but with an outside chance of upsetting the odds and qualifying for Rio.

 

Also announced was the news that Ireland’s Paralympic Sonar team will attempt to qualify for the Rio 2016 Games at the IFDS Combined World Championships in November in Melbourne, Australia. Helm, John Twomey from Kinsale will be hoping to qualify for his 11th successive Paralympic Games.

 

Providence Team IRL
Annalise Murphy (Laser Radial)
James Espey (Laser)
Ryan Seaton & Matt McGovern (49er)
Andrea Brewster & Saskia Tidey (49er FX)
John Twomey, Ian Costello, Austin O’Carroll (Paralympic Sonar)
The Irish Olympic Team had their most successful Olympics for thirty years at London 2012 with a 4th, 10th and 14th place finishes. Their target is to build on this success using the support of world class coaches, and following a structured and comprehensive programme of preparation in advance of Rio 2016.

 

Speaking at today’s announcement, Providence Resources Chief Executive, Tony O’Reilly said:
“Providence Resources is delighted with the great success the team has had on the water over the past 12 months, and in particular, it was great to see three of our teams qualify for Rio in Santander last September. We are very proud to sponsor these world class athletes and we look forward to working in partnership with the team in order that they can achieve their goals in Rio in 2016”

 

Commenting on the team and their progress, ISA Performance Director, James O’Callaghan said:
“Our programme of training and preparation for Rio 2016 is reaching a climax with these major events coming up in 2015 and our world class coaches are providing the team with the guidance required. This would not be possible without the support of Providence Resources and the Irish Sports Council, as we all aim for success in Rio next year”

Major events coming up:
Aquece Rio Intl Regatta (Rio 2016 test event) – 12-22 August 2015, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
49er & 49erFX World Championships – 17-22 November 2015, Buenos Aires, Argentina (Rio 2016 Olympic qualifier event)
Laser Radial World Championships – 17-26 November 2015, Al Mussanah Sports City, Oman
IFDS Combined World Championships – 24 November – 3 December, Melbourne, Australia
Rio 2016 Paralympic qualifier event

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Busy Period For Irish Junior And Youth Sailors

28 July 2015

The busiest period of the summer for young Irish sailors almost came to a close in spectacular fashion this weekend past. For a few hours we all believed Ewan McMahon had become the latest success story from the ISA Pathway in claiming the u17 European Radial title in Viana do Castelo, Portugal. However, the wind was taken from our sails a few hours later when a final race protest meant the title was no longer Ireland bound. That is sport and the decision is what it is, and Ewan will go on to fight another day. Whilst his performance stood out, the boys’ results were not as strong as recent years, and the academy will need to re-group before heading to Canada for the Worlds, and hopefully a more competitive outing.

 

Viana do Castelo also hosted the Radial Youth Europeans, where Aoife Hopkins was impressive all week, and Aishling Keller, despite starting slow put together a great string of results. They finished 9th and 10th respectively. You did not have to go very far down the leaderboard to find more Irish female sailors – Nicole Hemeryck and Erica Ruigrok both finished in the top 20. The future of Irish ladies radial sailing is a bright one.

 

 

The busy period continued in impressive fashion with the Durcan twins from RCYC competing at the 29er European Championships, which ran from the 17-21 July in Medemblik, The Netherlands. They were the youngest qualifiers in GOLD fleet and finished in 25th position.

 

Next up we had the Optimist Europeans 17-24 July in Pwllhli, Wales, where we had 5 sailors in the top half, with lots of great individual race results, which indicates good future potential.

 

In lake Riva Del Garda, Italy, we had a large representation in the Topper World Championships which ran from the 17-24 July. For the majority of the week we had Geoff Power on the podium and he sailed an excellent regatta. In the end he was just pipped to bronze by one point. It all about fine margins at this level, but nonetheless it’s a result Geoff can be very proud of.

 

 

 

And so, as the busy period drew to a close, all eyes moved to the other side of the World where we had two 420 teams competing at the World Championships in Castle Bay Karatsu, Japan from the 17-25 July. Douglas Elmes and Colin O’Sullivan recovered well from a pre event setback where Colin broke his toe – they soldiered on through the event and made GOLD fleet and finished a respectable 23rd. In the Ladies division Lizzie and Cara McDowell also made GOLD fleet and finished 19th overall.

 

So catch your breath while you still can – up next we have the 29er Worlds in Pwllhli, Wales, from 8-14 August; the Optimist Worlds in Dziwnów, Poland from August 26 – Sep 4; the 420 Junior Europeans in Bulgaria from August 8-15; 4.7 Youth Worlds Championships 6-14th August in the Netherlands and a Laser Radial Worlds in Kingston Canada 14-20 August.
Follow all progress of this talented generation on the ISA Performance website and Facebook page – facebook.com/ISAPerformance

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World Cup Roundup – Weymouth

15 June 2015

Providence Team IRL had a good week at the ISAF World Cup event at Weymouth, with the Sonar team medalling, Annalise Murphy coming in fifth and three teams finishing just outside the leading positions.

 

The Irish Paralympian team of John Twoomey, Ian Costello and Austin O’Carroll medalled with 3rd position in their Sonar. having had a good week of racing, with one 2nd place and three 3rd places.

 

 

Olympian, Annalise Murphy faced a tough field in unusual conditions for the south of England venue, where north-easterly winds predominated and becalmed weather hit the area. Murphy finished 5th overall, having raced well all week, posting a 2nd and 1st, and generally taking her place in the leading pack. Howth Yacht Club’s Aoife Hopkins competed in her first World cup event, and secured a number of finishes ahead of more-seasoned competitors.

 

 

The 49er crew of Matt McGovern and Ryan Seaton came in 12th position overall, having had a rough opening spell to the week, and climbed up the rankings steadily, posting several top 5 placings and a 1st on Saturday.

 

Saskia Tidey and Andrea Brewster in the 49erFX gained everyone’s respect, recovering from an illness enforced day off at the beginning of week to post strong results thereafter, including two 2nds and three top ten’s to leave them 16th at the end of the regatta.

 

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