64 All Ireland Sailors
With just over one week to go, Irish Sailing are pleased to announce the list of competitors for the Irish Sailing All Ireland Sailing Championships and Junior Championships. This year, the Juniors go first on 30 September-1 October at the Fastnet Outdoor & Marine Education Centre in Schull, followed by the All Ireland Championships on 7-8 October in Mullingar Sailing Club.
The All Ireland Sailing Championships have been running since 1947 and this year marks the 70th anniversary of this unique Irish competition. The aim of the event is to find the “champion of champions” – pitting all types of sailors against each other in one type of boat. Scrolling through the past winners is a veritable who’s who of sailing, from Annalise Murphy, Anthony O’Leary and Mark Mansfield to Mark Lyttle, Brian Craig, and Robert Dix.
- Ronan Walsh will be competing in both the All Irelands and Junior All Irelands
- Alex Barry is last year’s winner and came 2nd and 3rd in the previous two years
- Fionn Lyden will compete, fresh from his bronze medal at the 2017 U23 Finn World Championships
- Also competing is Irish Sailing’s board member Colin Kavanagh
Junior All Ireland Championships – some interesting points to note about the list of competitors (full list below):
- There are three sets of siblings in the competition: brother and sister Leah and Loghlen Rickard are up against each other in different boats, as well as the twins Johnny and Harry Durcan. Johnny was last year’s Junior Champion. The third set of sibling is also a set of twins, Conor and Jack Galligan of Greystones YC;
- A good proportion of competitors are from the RCYC;
- Also competing are Geoff Power and James McCann – the 420 duo were just picked for the Irish Sailing team for the Youth Sailing World Championships in China in December.
The nomination process for the All Irelands is complicated, and draws from a variety of different pools including past winners, dinghies and keelboats, as well as ranking orders within affiliated classes. Places at the event are allocated to classes pro rata the attendance at their national champs but with a bias built in to ensure representation of as many classes as is possible (hence the two places allocated this year in the Juniors for the Laser Radial, RS Feva, 420 and Optimist classes). You can find all the details of the nomination process, past winners, and current competitors here