SAILING: Draycote Sailing Club join ‘Bart’s Bash’

Andrew 'Bart' Simpson and Iain Percy
Andrew 'Bart' Simpson and Iain Percy

World record attempt for the largest ever sailing race

Draycote Water Sailing Club is taking part in “Bart’s Bash” on Saturday, September 21, a Guinness World Record attempt for the Largest Sailing Race ever. The race is being organised by the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation and will bring together sailors from 570 clubs in 50 different countries including yachts, dinghies and windsurfers in a single race.

Rugby MP, Mark Pawsey, and Rugby Borough Council Sports Development Officer, Tom Kittendorf, have agreed to act as independent witnesses, which will see Draycote Water’s club sailors competing against the likes of Olympic champions such as Sir Ben Ainslie in a Finn, Iain Percy in a Star and Paul Goodison in a Moth as well as many other international sailing champions.

In addition to being a World Record attempt, this inaugural Bart’s Bash will inspire and unite thousands of worldwide sailors to raise money for charity and remember Andrew ‘Bart’ Simpson, Gold and Silver Olympic Medallist who died last year while training for the America’s Cup.

The race at Draycote Water will start at 10.45am. The full entry list is available at: http://www.bartsbash.co.uk/race-entries.

“This is wonderful opportunity for the club to be part of a great cause in tribute to Bart Simpson who was an inspirational sailor and ambassador for the sport on and off the water,” said Club Commodore, Phillip Hunt.

“We invite everybody, sailors and non-sailors, to join us on 21 September 2014 in this unique chance to become world record holders,” said Foundation Trustee Iain Percy OBE. “It is sure to be a great, fun experience, whether taking part or supporting on the day. Bart’s Bash will inspire the next generation and boost interest in the sport, and in sailing clubs around the world, while achieving something truly historic.”

Inspired by Olympic Gold and Silver medallist Andrew “Bart” Simpson, and founded by Sir Ben Ainslie CBE, Iain Percy OBE and Andrew’s wife Leah, the Foundation helps young people to develop the personal skills that will improve their ability to succeed in life and to improve access to jobs and careers within the maritime sector.

The Foundation already includes a sailing centre in Weymouth which has been established to help train the Olympic stars of tomorrow and also give access to the sport to youngsters who may otherwise not have the opportunity. For more information, visit www.andrewsimpsonfoundation.co.uk.

Draycote Water Sailing Club is situated in the Severn Trent Country Park between Rugby and Southam and is open with safety boat cover every day of the year except Christmas Day.

The club has about 600 active sailing members, ranging in age from seven to over 70. The Club provides a range of training courses accredited by the RYA, sailing’s national governing body, to take participants from beginners up to racing in performance dinghies. It is also a specialist centre for the windsurfing training. To book courses, contact (01788) 814418 or visit the Club website http://www.draycotewater.co.uk/