Artemis Challenge returns

Five IMOCA 60s entered in the Cowes Week dash around the Isle of Wight

Tuesday July 5th 2011, Author: Camilla Green, Location: United Kingdom

Celebrating its fifth anniversary, the Artemis Challenge will once again take place in the middle of Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week.

The fleet of IMOCA 60 ocean racing monohulls will battle it out, fully crewed and accompanied by celebrity guests, on the 50 mile course round the island, competing for a £10,000 charity prize fund.

The Artemis Challenge, sponsored by Artemis investment Management, one of the UK’s leading investment companies and the largest British sponsor in offshore sailing, is now recognised as one of the key components of Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week.

The start line this year already features five IMOCA 60s, competing in the only UK-based IMOCA event this year.

Artemis Ocean Racing will be skippered by record-breaking yachtswoman Dee Caffari, who will be competing against fellow British offshore racer Alex Thomson on Hugo Boss. They will be joined by some of France’s top sailors including Armel Le Cleac'h on Banque Populaire, Vincent Riou on PRB and Bernard Stamm on his new Juan K-designed Cheminées Poujoulat. Further entries will be announced in the coming weeks. Between them, the fleet of skippers have completed 11 circumnavigations of the planet and features two former winners of solo round the world yacht races.

The Artemis Challenge at Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week has long attracted a strong list of celebrity guests. Teams competing in the race in the past have included sports stars Zara Phillips, Amy Williams, Will Greenwood, Mike Tindall and James Haskell, as well as other stars from the world of entertainment, including Davina McCall, Bryan Adams and James and Oliver Phelps, the Weasley Twins from the Harry Potter films. Celebrity guests for the Artemis Challenge 2011 will be announced in the coming weeks including unique spots on board available to the media.

The race follows the classic America’s Cup route around the Isle of Wight, starting at 10 AM on the Royal Yacht Squadron Line. The winner will be the IMOCA 60 that takes line honours after completing the 50 mile sprint back to the Royal Yacht Squadron Line (weather permitting), winning £10,000 for the charity of choice of the skipper.

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