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8 October 2005, 07:57 pm
Crew Announcements
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Round Britain and Ireland Challenge 2005
Southampton, Great Britain

The crews for the Round Britain and Ireland Challenge were announced today in Southampton, UK kicking off the start of Race Week for the intrepid voyagers, who will take to the start line next Saturday (15 October 2005).
Sir Chay BLYTH welcomed crew to the Challenge Business marquee in Ocean Village and introduced them to the skippers for the third generation of this fiercely demanding two-week circumnavigation of Britain and Ireland.

Commenting on the race, which will feature five identical 72ft Global Challenge race yachts, Sir Chay BLYTH said: 'I've raced around Britain and Ireland on two separate occasions and was lucky enough to come 1st in the first race and second in the second race. It's an exciting and demanding route where the teams will have to work hand-in-hand with the weather as they employ their tactics on this tricky course.

'The crews can expect all types of sailing conditions, including the rough stuff which I know they're all looking forward to! I enjoyed both my races and I hope that the crews enjoy theirs just as much.

'This is the third time the event has been run but it's a new race every time because of the completely different weather patterns they'll be racing in and the brand new crew who will bring a new twist to the event and make it their own.'

There was an air of anticipation as crews excitedly waited to find out who they would be sailing with. As names flashed on a grand screen there were cheers and applauding from some crew as they discovered who their fellow crew and skippers were.

This time round the race is also going to be run under affiliation of the RYA. Another change to the event is that the yachts in the Round Britain and Ireland Challenge 2005 will each be headed by a professional skipper and assisted by two professional mates.

The skippers for the race are: 36 year-old Marcus CHORLETON assisted by Adam TUFFNELL, 29 and Kent CASSELS, 48; 40 year-old Des HARVEY with Steve DURKIN, 22 and Andy BUCHANAN, 26; 36 year-old Will OTTON racing with Ricky CHALMERS, 45 and Matthew BARNES, 35; 31 year-old John QUIGLEY with mates Corrie McQUEEN, 26 and David ALBURY, 31 and last but by no means least 28 year-old Martin WILD who will be sailing with Duncan JUBB, 30 and Kelly ROBINSON, 24.

Following the announcement the crews made their way to their respective yachts to get used to what will be home to them for the next three weeks. They will have strategy and planning meetings and will be getting to know each other before they head out for three days of intense race training tomorrow.

A full line up of events and activities is planned for Race Start Week, before the yachts assemble at the start line for an 11am start on Saturday 15 October.

Rachel Anning
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