Autumn ‘GOAT’s Coaching

The GOATs programme

The GOATs programme ( “George Optimist Advanced Training Squad” ) is the Club’s high-performance Optimist sailing programme. The programme runs over 2 terms through the winter from September to early April, and prepares the sailors for the Youth Nationals in late Spring and the next IODAI racing season.

Entry requirements

Our programme is based on fun, friendship, family and sporting excellence.

For new sailors wishing to participate, and in line with the programme’s policy, they must:

  1. Have sailed in 2 IODAI Regional events and a National sailing event in Main Fleet (Junior or Senior) this season
  2. Be able to sail comfortably in at least 18-20 knots of breeze
  3. Have a strong standard of racing experience and be prepared for sessions of up to 4 hours on the water
  4. Sailors moving from GODS to GOATS must have sign-off from GODS head coach, Finn Walker, before they are eligible to move into the GOATS programme


New sailors to the programme are also assessed by the programme’s head coach Rian Geraghty-McDonnell over 2 training sessions, prior to admission.

Format of programme

  • Morning training each Sunday – please ensure your sailor has a good breakfast
  • Double day (Sat & Sun) weekend of training once a month
  • Aim is for 4 hours on water with briefing and debrief 0900-1430
  • Each sailor will set goals for the season as part of the programme
  • Individual sailor feedback from coaches (written and/or video) twice per term
  • Fitness and sports psychology will be included as part of programme

Sailor requirements

  • It is important that sailors have the correct warm sailing gear for the winter months (if you need advice about this please ask)
  • Sailors must bring a notebook to every session
  • Sailors must launch on time and in accordance with the timetable. Any sailor arriving late will not be facilitated as coaches will not be in a position to return to shore for latecomers

Coaches’ credentials

  • Expert coaches who are all actively sailing themselves. Local, passionate and experienced
  • International coaches – at least 2 weekends of training with top international coaches
  • Recent and current Oppie National Champions will guest to share their learnings
  • The biggest local Oppie fleet in Ireland providing real racing experience
  • Racing practice at every session



For further information please contact Jason Crawford or Joanne Shelley

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