Eighteen lucky youngsters from south coast Sailing Clubs will take part in an exciting warm-up show at the SailGP Cowes event this weeekend.
The young sailors will go head to head as part of the SailGP Inspire programme, SailGP’s community outreach initiative that aims to use sailing as a force for good, which launches at the event.
Aged between 13 and 15 and representing nine sailing clubs across the south, the young sailors have been chosen to take part in a series of races ahead of the main SailGP action – six cutting-edge 50ft multihulls, representing six nations, ‘flying’ round a course on hydrofoils capable of speeds in excess of 50 knots (57 mph).
They will race identical 14ft RS Cat multihulls in front of the SailGP Grandstand as a warm-up to the main event, which takes place in the Solent on Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 and features some of the world’s best athletes.
They will also get to meet members of SailGP GBR the British entry led by Olympic bronze medallist Chris Draper and helmed by the British Sailing Team’s Dylan Fletcher.
The sailors all come from clubs in the RYA’s South region which have been awarded Recognised Club status by British Youth Sailing in recognition of their dedication to developing junior and youth sailors’ racing skills.
Each club put forward sailors they felt best displayed British Youth Sailing’s values and behaviours: respect and integrity, ownership, courage and determination, curiosity and passionate ambition.
The young sailors taking part are:
Abby Hire and Tom Wharmby (Royal Lymington Yacht Club)
Grace King and Kristian Shafer (Brading Haven Yacht Club)
Emily Fox and Oliver Edwards (Sea View Yacht Club)
Georgie Cosens and Charlie South (Emsworth Yacht Club)
Honor and Fred Langhorne (Bosham Yacht Club)
Caitlin Williams and Cam Mitchell (Hayling Island Sailing Club)
Joy Odey and Richie Thurlby (Hill Head Sailing Club)
Lizzie McCormack and Archie Wright (Warsash Sailing Club)
and Illy Burns and Thomas Leather (Gurnard Sailing Club).
Cowes SailGP starts on Friday August 9 with practice racing ahead of the main Grand Prix on Saturday August 10 and Sunday August 11.
The exhibition races will take place prior to at 3pm with Sunday’s race being featured on the SailGP broadcast, available to watch via the SailGP app.