Celebrating the legacy of Gold and Silver Olympic medallist and America’s Cup sailor Andrew 'Bart' Simpson, more than 17,000 sailors, representing over 600 clubs worldwide participated in Bart’s Bash yesterday.
So far, Bart’s Bash has raised £166,716.42 for the ASSF worldwide and it has provisionally set a new Guinness World Record for ‘largest sailing event in 24 hours.’ Nine of the twelve Clipper 70 yachts took part in the race, and Sir Robin Knox-Johnston joined more than 130 alumni Clipper Race crew and skippers spanning seven race editions on the 24.8 mile course on the Solent, specially created for the Bart’s Bash event.
Sir Robin, who took part on board Invest Africa, remarked: “It was a fantastic day to get the Clipper 70s out on the water and it was a pleasure to see many familiar Clipper Race faces return to Gosport once again. We had perfect sailing conditions and many experienced ocean racers competing which made the race very close and exciting, with the lead changing quite a lot. Well done to all our racers.”
Continuing, he said: “Congratulations to the team at the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation for creating such a successful, global sailing event. It was a proud moment for all at the CRYC to be able to join together, be part of history and raise funds for the first ever Bart’s Bash.”
The Clipper Race Yacht Club (CRYC) has raised over £5,000 for the event, which will be split between the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation and official Clipper 2013-14 Race charity, the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust. Qingdao, led by Clipper 2013-14 Race skipper Olly Cotterell, was first to cross the start line, closely followed by Derry~Londonderry~Doire and Switzerland.
By the windward mark, Qingdao had been overtaken by Mission Performance, skippered by 2011-12 Race skipper and Chief UK sailing instructor, Ben Bowley, and Invest Africa. As the teams approached the finish line, Qingdao and GREAT Britain, skippered by winning 2013-14 Race skipper Eric Holden, fought it out to cross the Finish Line in first and second place respectively with only two minutes separating the two teams. Jamaica Get All Right, skippered by had a successful race and crossed the line in third place, having started from the back of the fleet.
Caty Savage, on Qingdao for Bart’s Bash, a former OneDLL crew member from the 2013-14 race, said: “The Clipper Race Yacht Club is a great opportunity to sail together as a crew, it was lovely to race with crew members from previous races. The Clipper Race has always had a family feel to it and this weekend was like meeting the extended family, we had a great race for Bart’s Bash, and to be a member of the winning team just topped off the whole weekend!”
The Bart’s Bash event was part of a weekend of CRYC festivities during its annual Red Socks Regatta, named in honour of the club’s first Commodore, former Clipper Race skipper, Colin de Mowbray MBE, who was famous for always wearing red socks.
Elapsed race finish times:
1. Qingdao, skippered by Olly Cotterell - 3 hours 7 minutes 20 secs
2. GREAT Britain, skippered by Eric Holden - 3 hours 9 minutes 30 secs
3. Jamaica Get All Right, skippered by Pete Stirling - 3 hours 13 minutes 10 secs
4. Invest Africa, skippered by Bob Beggs - 3 hours 17 minutes 55 secs
5. Team Garmin, skippered by Jan Ridd - 3 hours 22 minutes 15 secs
6. Mission Performance, skippered by Ben Bowley - 3 hours 24 minutes 55 secs
7. Switzerland, skippered by Chris Hollis - 3 hours 25 minutes 10 secs
8. Old Pulteney – skippered by Ian Conchie - 3 hours 28 minutes 10 secs
9. Derry~Londonderry~Doire, skippered by Greg Miller - 3 hours 34 minutes 41 secs
The Clipper Race Yacht Club was set up in 2009 and has over 840 members worldwide. It is the only club in the world that requires an ocean crossing qualification and has more circumnavigators in its membership than any other club.
Membership is exclusive to anyone who has participated in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.
For more information on the CRYC and how to be part of this unique group of adventurers, click here.
For more information on Bart’s Bash, click here. For images of the day’s racing, click here.
Watch a video of the day's action, here.