Shannon One Designs are 18 foot clinker built boats with a mainsail of 140 square feet and a crew of three, designed by Morgan Giles in 1920 and are the second oldest one design dinghy in the world and they boast the largest fleet of any traditional sailing craft in Ireland.

The Shannon One Design is a wooden, clinker-built, eighteen-foot (5.49m) racing boat, propelled by a single gunter-rigged mainsail of 140 square feet (15.6 sq.m). The boat has a relatively narrow beam of 4 feet 10.5 inches (1.5m), and draws 4 feet (1.23m) with her centreboard down. Spruce planking on oak ribs with mahogony or iroko gunwhales, thwarts and knees.

The concept of one-design class racing boat on the Shannon was considered at a meeting held on the 29th January 1920 of delegates from the Lough Derg, Lough Ree and North Shannon Yacht Clubs in the Prince of Wales Hotel in Athlone. Morgan Giles was commissioned to draw up a design and presented SOD 'Design 201', based on the dipping lugsail open 18’ lakeboat which was used widely on the Shannon and had been modified for racing. This design was slightly modified by the early members and boat builder from a dipping lugsail to a gunter rig, a lighter centerboard and removal of the copper or mahogany buoyancy tanks.

The first Shannon One Design trial boat was ordered by L. Graham (Boy) Toler in 1921 from Walter Levinge, a boat builder on the shores of Lough Ree near Athlone.  The boat was named 'Phyllis' - later numbered SOD 43 and renamed 'Red Boat' in 1923. The new class commenced numbering from SOD 32 to taking into account existing open 18 foot racing dinghies on the River Shannon. The Shannon One Design began to race in earnest in 1922.


With a large sail and comparatively narrow beam, a Shannon One Design is a lively performer, especially in a fresh breeze. The class attracts a wide range of sailors from far and wide, for the two main events each year, the week-long regattas at Ballyglass on Lough Ree and Dromineer on Lough Derg during August.  Up to 55 SODs have participated in these events.  Many of the same family names that attended those first meetings in the early 1920’s still feature in SOD racing today.  The Shannon One Design boat register is currently at SOD No. 177.

Founding Fathers - meeting held in the Prince of Wales Hotel in Athlone 29th January 1920

LRYC – Major Handcock; R.D. Levinge; W. Levinge; D.Cameron; F.Coen; N.Lyster; M.J. Hogan; R.S. English; W. Bolton.

NSYC – R.Devinish; Dr. V. Delany;K. Delany; A French; J.W. Notley

LDYC – W. Jocelyn Waller

Boat Builders

Walter Levinge 33 to 118 Total 60

Kineavy’s Boat Yard 32, 45 & 50

Wards 42

Merne 39

Denis Gray 70

Tommy Gallagher 71

Rodney Lomax 79, 81, 87, 89, 90 & 94

Jimmy Furey 107 to 170 Total of 36

Peter Quigley 99 to 152 Total of 20

Eric Goodbody 142; 151

Edward Brennan 163 & 164

Dougal Mc Mahon & Jimy Reid 161

John Jones 165

Dougal Mc Mahon 168, 174 & 176

Jim Horgan & Henry Birmingham 171

Alan Healy 172

Tomas Thomson 173

Liam Moloney 175
Cathy MacAleavy& Jimmy Furey 178


Perry’s – Dunlaoghaire

Madder & Lucas

Downers – Dun Laoghaire

T.E. Hayward Ltd

Tasker; Mc Williams; UK McWilliams

Watson & Jameson; Watson Sails

Kaczor Morgan

North Sails

Hyde Sails


1920 No 201 Open Centreboard Sailing Boats; 1926 Regulations (Equipment Optional)

1952 Uffa Fox Proposals (Jolly Boat)

1953 Lifefloats

1961 Regulations

1963 Lifejackets

1981 720 Rule

1989 Metrication

1998 Green Book

2001 Yellow Book

2007 Brown Book

Regatta Venues

Gailey Bay LRYC

Tailtean Games - Dun Laoghaire 1924 & 1933

Lough Rea - Galway LRYC

Derrydarragh Bay LRYC
Hodsons Bay LRYC
Kilenure Lough LRYC

Lough Ennel – WestmeathLRYC

Lough Key LRYC

Lough Bofin & Boderg LRYC

Lough Ramor - Cavan

Ilaunmore – Lough Derg

Shannonbridge & Portumna

Blackbrink Bay – Lecarrow

Gortalougha – Lough Derg

Glandore – Classic Boat Regatta

Lough Erne LEYC

Dun Laoghaire
Mountshanon LDYC
Garrkennedy LDYC
Kilgarvan LDYC
Waterloo LDYC
Kilaloe LDYC
Ballyglass LRYC
Dromineer LDYC


Around the islands in Lough Ree

Around the houses in Lough Derg

Olympic; Trapezoid; Windward Leeward

Butterfly or X course

Running Starts

Grunters Plate - a test  of seamanship

Scurry Cup - anything!


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