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Olly Bridge flies 72 metres in the air behind the world's fastest sail racing boat

by Great Britain SailGP Team 6 Aug 13:31 BST
Three time European Formula Kite Champion Olly Bridge flies 72 metres in the air behind the world's fastest sail racing boat - the SailGP F50. © Great Britain SailGP Team

With just five days to go until racing kicks off at the European debut of SailGP in Cowes, the Great Britain SailGP Team have been out causing a stir on the Solent.

The team invited three time European Formula Kite Champion Olly Bridge to come and play with them in the Solent just a few days before the Cowes SailGP event - the penultimate event in the new global sailing league's inaugural season.

Attaching himself to the British team's wingsailed F50, the fastest sail racing boat in the world, Olly was towed up to an eye-watering 72m - that's three times the height of the wing of the F50 or in layman's terms, the height of six double-decker buses on end.

The team are now focused on the real action at the end of the week: "It was epic to pull off the Flying Foilers stunt with Olly, especially as we're all pretty keen kitesurfers ourselves. We had no idea what would actually happen! But now our sites are firmly set on Cowes and doing our home crowd proud next weekend," said Dylan Fletcher, Helmsman of Great Britain SailGP Team.

The Cowes SailGP Race Village

Coming to the UK for the first time marks a special moment in time for the Great Britain SailGP Team as Cowes is home to the oldest and largest annual sailing regatta in the world, expecting up to 100,000 spectators throughout the week. As an Official Feature Event of Cowes Week, Cowes SailGP will bring an added level of excitement to the event with supercharged wingsailed catamarans racing in close-quarters at speeds potentially exceeding 50 knots, just off Cowes. The Cowes SailGP Race Village will run along the seafront from the end of the Cowes Green up to Egypt Point. Activities in the Race Village start from 11:30 a.m. each day, with the races taking place from 3-4:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Ahead of the spectacular racing, an exciting pre-show will take place, when local sailors will have the chance to share the waters with the F50s and showcase their talents in front of the SailGP Grandstand. Working with the RYA (Royal Yachting Association), the young sailors will go head to head as part of the SailGP Inspire program - SailGP's community outreach initiative that aims to use sailing as a force for good - which launches at the event.

On Friday, August 9, fans will be able to see the teams hit the racecourse for the first time, for the official practise racing, sharing the Solent with royalty. The teams will race following the King's Cup - a major sailing event hosted by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in support of their charitable causes - taking place off the SailGP Race Village from 10 a.m.-12 p.m.

Ticket Options

SailGP offers two ticketed options for front-row seats to the action and unrivalled views of the racecourse. Fans who want to get as close to the Saturday racing as possible can purchase tickets for the Cowes SailGP Cruise Premier for a premium on-water experience. Those who would prefer to stay on shore, can enjoy the action from the SailGP Grandstand in the heart of the Race Village. SailGP also offers a complimentary boater registration programme for fans wishing to watch the action from the comfort of their own boat in spectator zones on the racecourse perimetre. Registrants will receive important race management information, schedules and the latest race maps, as well as a commemorative Cowes SailGP boat flag.

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