Please select your home edition
Crewsaver 2021 Safetyline LEADERBOARD

Double Handed attempt at 40th Three Peaks Yacht Race

by Rob Howard 16 Jun 2017 12:13 BST 17 June 2017
Pip Hare and Charles Hill set for a double handed attempt in the 40th Three Peaks Yacht Race © Three Peaks Yacht Rac

The Barmouth to Fort William Three Peaks Yacht Race is one of the oldest and most demanding challenges in the sailing and adventure sports calendars. The race began in 1977 and this year celebrates its 40th anniversary event, but Pip Hare and Charles Hill will try something never attempted before, the first double-handed entry.

The race is a daunting challenge under any circumstances, requiring teams to sail up the west coast from Barmouth to harbours close to the three highest peaks in Wales, England and Scotland, then run to their summits and back. This normally requires a team of 5, three crew and two mountain runners, who race non-stop, but Hare and Hill will try to complete all of the sailing and all three runs with just the two of them!

The sailing distance is around 389 miles and the hazards of the passage include sand bars, the passage of the rocky Menai Strait, numerous tidal gates, and shallow harbour entrances, and there is even a whirlpool to beware of! It is demanding coastal sailing and the weather could be anything from gales to calms, during which teams man the oars. It is often both during the same race!

For the runners the challenge is to run up and down Snowdon, Scafell Pike and Ben Nevis from the coast. They will be on the mountains in the dark some of the time and will cover 72 miles of running and 14,000 feet of climbing, plus 26 miles of cycling in the Lake District.

Hare, who has won line honours in the race twice said; "The idea of a double handed entry has been going round for a while and following our 2016 success I really started to think it could be possible. Immediately after the race I was sailing with Charles (who had been a runner on our 2013 entry) and mentioned the idea. He immediately volunteered as co-skipper so things became real."

The pair set about writing a proposal to the race Committee on how they would tackle the challenges of the course as a team of two, then devised a one year training plan, drawing from their own success' in fell running (Hill) and Ocean racing (Hare).

"Preparation for an event like this is everything," remarked Charles. "We are running each of the land routes in its entirety before the event as well as sailing across the Atlantic together. We will need to work closely together through the whole race and it has been a great opportunity to train each other in our different disciplines."

"This is a world first and there is no question double handing this race will be the toughest thing I have ever done", says Hare. "It's going to absolutely push my boundaries of endurance and performance to the limits. I think the hardest moment will be getting through the Menai Straits. We will have sailed for 12 hours from the start, then run a 24 mile course up and down Snowdon – knowing we have to get back on the boat and start sailing again will be a huge mental hurdle."

The duo will be racing on the J109 'Nunatak' and supporting the 'Fairlight School Big Playground Adventure' during their race. This is a project raising funds to provide a much needed outdoor facility for children who may have little or no access to the outdoors in their home environments. Hare said, "Access to the outdoors has been an integral part of achieving my goals through life and given me some of the happiest moments. The Big Playground adventure will enable some children to play and learn safely outside for perhaps the first time in their lives and I cannot think of a more appropriate cause support."

The pair will be on the start line alongside 13 other entries, including several past race winners and the defending 'Kings of the Mountains' (Alex Pilkington and Pavel Paloncy). Paloncy, from the Czech Republic, is one of several international entrants and the competitors range in age from 21 to 72 and will sail a variety of boats (with the overall winner declared under IRC handicap).

You can read full details of all the teams and follow the live coverage of the race from Saturday June 17th at (Teams will have YB satellite trackers so viewers can follow their progress and there will be regular news and photos.)

You can sponsor the Hare Hill team at

You can also follow the race on Facebook at and on Twitter @3peaksyacht and #3peaksyachtrace.

For more information on the race please contact the press officer by email on

Related Articles

Veterans and School Teams Triumph
At the 44th Three Peaks Yacht Race and Challenge This year's Three Peaks Yacht Race showed, once again, why it has endured since 1977 as one of the world's great adventure races. Posted on 21 Jul 2022
School teams set for 44th Three Peaks Yacht Race
Teams of staff and pupils from Sedbergh and Shrewsbury Schools are entered into the Challenge Class For the first time in the long history of the UK's greatest adventure sailing race, two school teams are entered and will start with the race fleet from Barmouth on July 9th. Posted on 8 Jul 2022
44th Three Peaks Yacht Race starts on Saturday
The race is one of the oldest multisport adventure challenges in the sporting calendar The 44th Three Peaks Yacht Race starts from Barmouth on Saturday and this year there are nine intrepid teams of sailors and runners taking part in this iconic race. Posted on 7 Jul 2022
E.ON sponsors the 43rd Three Peaks Yacht Race
The race is starting today in Barmouth The Barmouth to Fort William Three Peaks Yacht Race has announced that energy company E.ON will be the new race sponsor for 2021. Posted on 19 Jun 2021
42nd Three Peaks Yacht Race
Fast and challenging sailing conditions on the West Coast of the UK The 42nd Three Peaks Yacht Race had some fast and challenging sailing conditions on the West Coast of the UK, and the event rolled the clock back, including a multi-hull category for the first time in 20 years. Posted on 26 Jun 2019
42nd Three Peaks Yacht Race preview
An iconic adventure challenge for sailors and runners At sea the race is 389 miles of difficult coastal sailing including the passage of the Menai Strait, rounding the Mull of Kintyre and Mull of Galloway, and finding a route through the tidal gates of the inner Hebridean Isles. Posted on 11 Jun 2019
Wild Spirit wins 41st Three Peaks Yacht Race
Three Peaks Yacht Race is always a great test of endurance The first three days of the race were slow racing in what were often flat calm conditions. Teams had to row their yachts to achieve marginal gains and have the patience and determination to keep working hard day and night while seeing only slow progress. Posted on 15 Jun 2018
Exposure Lights onboard for Three Peaks Yacht Race
Three Peaks Yacht Race multi-sport competitors protected by OLAS Tags Competitors in Three Peaks Yacht Race, the multi-sport adventure challenge of offshore sailing, running and cycling, are all benefiting by wearing the OLAS Tags from Exposure Lights as part of a newly announced sponsorship agreement with the event. Posted on 11 Jun 2018
41st Three Peaks Yacht Race: Adventure unlimited
One of the world's oldest and most prestigious adventure races The annual Three Peaks Yacht Race takes place from 17.00 on June 9th starting in Barmouth, where eight teams will gather to tackle one of the world's oldest and most prestigious adventure races. Posted on 6 Jun 2018
Hare & Hill complete Double Handed attempt
New levels of endurance in the Three Peaks Yacht Race The 40th Barmouth to Fort William Three Peaks Yacht Race was full of drama, adventure, close racing, elation and disappointment. Posted on 23 Jun 2017