The National Yacht Club hosted the 2019 Subaru Flying Fifteen World Sailing Championships in Dún Laoghaire from 2nd to 13th September. A Flying Fifteen (or F15) is a two-person sailing dinghy or keelboat, designed for racing. The 2019 Subaru Flying Fifteen World Championships is the only keelboat sailing world championships to be held in Ireland this year and crowds of over 15,000 people flocked to Dún Laoghaire and Dublin Bay. The National Yacht Club hosted this competition twice before in 1992 and 2003 and this year’s event benefited the local economy with a €1.5million tourism windfall for the town on hotels, food and entertainment.
The 2019 Subaru Flying Fifteen World Championships had 85 boats and 170 competitors from over 10 countries taking part. Off the water, Dún Laoghaire itself was be a hub of social activity with race goers and tourists visiting from near and far during the regatta. Spectators were be able to soak up the atmosphere and watch the racing from the East Pier at Dún Laoghaire. Despite being a world championship event, there is heavy local influence with many local businesses and residents providing assistance and support. In addition to the large number of local competitors, two local businesses, SNOW, a design and laser-cutting company, and AK Designs, which re-cycles and convert old sails, have specially designed prizes for the competition.
Pat Ryan, Managing Director, Subaru Ireland commented ‘Just like 2003, we are extremely proud to once again be title sponsor of this spectacular sailing event as well as being the official vehicle partner of the Subaru Flying Fifteen World Championships 2019. Commenting on sailing as an environmentally friendly sport, Pat continued “This is also an exciting time for Subaru with the arrival of our Forester and XV Crossover e-BOXER hybrid models later this year. Sailing is an environmentally friendly sport and with our new range of e-BOXER hybrid models Subaru will be playing their part in promoting a sustainable future also. Our range of versatile, safe and capable AWD vehicles are perfect for towing and as a result we feel our association with the sailing community, and the Subaru Flying Fifteen World Championships, is a perfect match for our brand’.