Competitors of all ages from Rutland Sailing Club will be joining thousands across the globe to take part in the world’s largest sailing race, Bart’s Bash, this Sunday.
Organised in memory of Olympic sailor Andrew ‘Bart’ Simpson, the event sees hundreds of venues from sailing clubs to windsurfing groups hosting a race which welcomes all, whilst raising funds for charity.
Basically, it’s the day the world goes sailing.
Bart’s Bash, now in its third year, is organised by the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation (ASSF) and so far has seen more than 40,000 people taking part in 62 countries.
This year it coincides with the end of the Rio 2016 Paralympics sailing event and will be raising funds and awareness for disabled sailing around the world.
Rutland Sailing Club will once again be among those taking part, with more than 120 boats taking to the water, including club racers, young sailors taking part in their junior championships, novices and disabled sailors.
The club is also hosting a national inland championship and 60th anniversary party for the Solo Class, with more than 80 visiting sailors who will also be taking part in Bart’s Bash.
General manager and past commodore Nick Clarke said: “The club always supports Bart’s Bash and everyone who’s out sailing on the day will be joining in.
“It’s always a great race and this year all the money raised will be going towards supporting sailing for disabled people, which is a cause particularly close to the hearts of our members at Rutland.”
Rutland Sailing Club has one of the country’s biggest and best Sailability centres, enabling people of all ages and with all types of disabilities to access the sport of sailing, and the club’s race officer for the Bart’s Bash weekend will be Richard Langford, who is chairman of the RYA Foundation, the charitable arm of the Royal Yachting Association which aims to make boating more accessible to everyone, regardless of circumstance.
Each year the results from all the Bart’s Bash races held across the world are amalgamated so local sailors can see where they have finished in the global field of entrants, which ranges from novices and club sailors up to national and international champions, and even Olympians like ASSF Founding Trustee Sir Ben Ainslie.
Sir Ben said: “We as a Foundation are delighted to see Bart’s Bash continue to grow as an event, and we’re all looking forward to getting on the water to have some fun in Bart’s name.”