Unknown to most, Ireland is rich in its Powerboat Racing History with roots that can be traced back to the 19th Century.
1895 - Powerboat Race Waterford.
1903 - Worlds 1st International Powerboat race for the Harmsworth Trophy – RCYC Cork.
1922 - Irishman John Ward became the first Secretary General of the UIM.
1922 - Ireland became 1 of the 12 founding Nations of the UIM 1950”s – Irish Powerboat Association (IPA) became UIM National Authority for Ireland. An all-Ireland NGB that oversaw the sport for over 5 decades.
2000’s – Due to the IPA being unable to source Insurance cover for their activities, between 2001and 2018, Both the Royal Yachting association (RYA) and the Irish Sailing Association (ISA) acted in the role of NGB for the sport in Ireland. Although Sailing was their primary sport, both organisations worked with the Powerboat Clubs and Associations to ensure Powerboat racing could source the Insurance they required. During this time the UIM had to allow a special rule derogation to be put into place to allow competitors from North and South to race together.
2018 – The RYA took a decision to withdraw from the role of UIM NA for Northern Ireland. The Powerboat Association of Northern Ireland (PBANI) was established to fill the void left by the RYA. Given the experience within the PBANI, at the UIM General Assembly in Beirut the PBANI were accepted as the UIM NA for Northern Ireland. Late in 2018, The ISA decided to follow the RYA route and requested the PBANI take over as all-Ireland UIM NA, sanctioned by the UIM Council the PBANI were tasked as the UIM NA for the island of Ireland. This development brought Irish Powerboat History full circle as pre 2001.
2019- We within the the PBANI understand the great responsibility which history has placed on our shoulders and although Powerboating may have its roots firmly bedded in amateurism, we realise for the sport to flourish and prosper that it needs to be enveloped by professionalism. In addition as the all-Ireland UIM NA we need to be mindful of the challenges that need to be addressed, be these environmental issues, Laws and regulations, UIM Powerboating Rules, Safety, Youth Development, Governance etc. whilst all the time encouraging people to participate.
Our team are highly experienced, many having raced or in the role of an official at International World Championship level. To develop the sport we need to work with our stakeholders to help develop projects that encourage persons of all ages and backgrounds to take part. The UIM Youth Development Program will be a corner stone of our development and its where young people will get together and learn the fundamentals of Powerboating an a safe and enjoyable environment. We will strive to be inclusive at all levels and undertake to be open and transparent as we carry out the organisation’s role of governance and change. By doing so we will build a legacy that will safeguard the sport for future generations.
We hope that you will be part of this future building the sport that we all love.
Oliver Haire .
President - Powerboat Association of Northern Ireland