Red Funnel preview

Trish Jenkins looks forward to the racing over Easter

Wednesday March 19th 2003, Author: Trish Jenkins, Location: United Kingdom
Chocolate eggs are appearing on supermarket shelves, spring flowers are finally emerging after a long winter and there’s a flurry of activity in boatyards and marinas around the country. This can only mean one thing - the Red Funnel aster Challenge will soon be upon us. A good excuse to brush off the cobwebs, shake down and shape up both crew and boat for the busy racing season ahead.

This Easter, the popular regatta sponsored by Red Funnel Ferries and organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC), will kick off on Friday 18 April. Lasting three days and featuring free professional coaching sessions on and off the water - supported by the Royal Yachting Association and RORC - the event continues to grow from strength to strength.

RORC Commodore Chris Little said: "Over 70 boats are expected to take part in IRC and IRM classes, with daily racing taking place over tight Solent courses designed to emphasise teamwork and boat handling. We are of course extremely grateful to Red Funnel for their continued support and in this 12th year we are looking forward to seeing a larger number of boats than ever on the start line on Good Friday."

After analysing video footage shot out on the water during the day’s racing, teams can discuss the ‘How’s’, ‘Why’s’ and ‘Wherefore’s’ of their racing technique and performance with Jim Saltonstall and his team, during the post-race debriefs which have become an integral part of the regatta.

Although for most a serious and testing regatta, the Red Funnel Easter Challenge allows for a little fun each evening, when winning teams in all classes are rewarded with Easter eggs in recognition of their achievements at the daily prizegiving ceremonies held at Cowes Yacht Haven. Special Red Funnel prizes will also be awarded straight after racing during the final prizegiving on Easter Sunday and the Red Funnel Prix d’Elegance Trophy will be presented at the RORC Annual Dinner in December.

Supporting the regatta as part of their commitment to sailing, Olive Glass, Marketing Director of Red Funnel commented: “We are delighted to be associated with this established regatta which has now become one of the premier events in the yachting calendar.”

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