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Country’s top club teams sought for British Keelboat League

by Will Carson, RYA 2 May 2018 15:27 BST 9-10 June 2018
2017 British Keelboat League finals ©

The search is on for clubs from across the country to enter the 2018 British Keelboat League – and prove that their team has what it takes to beat the best.

The British Keelboat League brings together the country's most experienced keelboat racers while providing an opportunity for talented young sailors to access top level competition.

Racing takes place in identical yachts provided for the teams, from Hunter 707s to Sonars, SB20s to J70s, pitting clubs against each other on a level playing field.

Since its launch in 2016 the British Keelboat League has proved a hit among teams looking for plenty of quick-fire action.

The format is designed to make exciting, high-speed sailing and minimise the spread in the fleet, and with a target time of 15 minutes per race the emphasis is on as many short races in as quick succession as possible.

With each team getting around 12 races per weekend it represents plenty of bang for buck, with entry from as little as £220 per team.

The qualifying rounds of the British Keelboat League kick off with a double-header on the June 9 and 10 with both the Royal Northern and Clyde YC in Helensburgh and the Royal Corinthian YC in Burnham hosting in their Sonars and 707s respectively.

June will also see the Royal Torbay YC in Torquay hosting a qualifier in SB20s.

After a short break for the summer the Royal Yacht Squadron will host the final opportunity for clubs to bag a coveted spot in the national final in their J70s.

The top two teams from each qualifier will go through to the grand finale, held in J70s and hosted by Royal Thames Yacht Club in Cowes in September.

Previous winners include Hayling Island SC and Itchenor SC. The British Keelboat League also forms part of qualifying for the Sailing Champions League, bringing together the world's top national club teams.

"The British Keelboat League is simply the best value way of getting involved in top-level keelboat racing," said Jack Fenwick, Keelboat Development Manager at the RYA.

"It's pay-for-play sailing at its best –boats are provided for teams at whichever event you go to, and with so many races over a weekend it only costs about a fiver per race each. All teams have to do is turn up on time, the rest is taken care of.

"We're on the hunt for clubs all over the country to enter teams and battle it out for the title of British Keelboat League champion.

"It's a great opportunity for seasoned sailors to show their skills but also for young talent to represent their club and to get a chance to make their mark."

For more information about the British Keelboat League or to sign up, visit here.

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