Another downhill sleigh ride?

Competitors line-up for this weekend's North Sea Race

Wednesday April 30th 2008, Author: Trish Jenkins, Location: United Kingdom
There will be big grins all round if the competitors in this year’s North Sea Race get the same conditions as last year. That race was a downhill sleigh ride and Peter de Ridder’s VO70 Mean Machine won, smashing the race record by over eight hours, at an average speed of over 16 knots.

The entry list for the 2008 North Sea Race has eclipsed last year and a fleet of over 60 boats will race from Harwich to Scheveningen over the bank holiday this weekend. The high class fleet is mainly from Holland, but there are also entries from Britain, Belgium and Austria.

Past class winners racing this year include: Piet Vroon’s Formidable 3, Kees Kaan’s ROARK, (the other) Peter de Ridder’s Checkmate, Michiel van der Meulen’s van Uden-TUDelft-van Oord, R.M. Crul’s Rosetta from the Rocks, F. Winterswijk’s Antares, Paul van der Pol’s Jimjams, K A de Walle’s Fandango and Gert Vink’s Gambiet.

The first RORC North Sea Race was the Heligoland Race in 1933. The 310 mile race was from Burnham-on-Crouch to Heligoland (an island in the SE corner of the North Sea). 14 yachts entered the race and it was won by the smallest, the gaff rigged, Isis.

The North Sea Race is part of The Royal Ocean Racing Club’s Season’s Points Championship.

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