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North Sails & Magic Marine Solo Class National Club Race Event

by Will Loy 30 May 06:18 BST 19 July 2020
Salcombe Yacht Club Winter Series Race 4 © Malcolm Mackley

With so many events having been cancelled in 2020, ranging from Open Meetings to major NSCA Events including the National Championships being lost to the uncertainties we all understand around C19, the National Solo Class Association were keen to find a way to give all its members something else to look forward to.

We are pleased to announce an alternative has been arranged for those still keen to compete with other Solo sailors in a safe way at their local club. Working with SailRacer's GPS experts and event organisers the class has come up with a unique and innovative solution.

On 19th July 2020 Solo sailors will be able to compete in socially distanced club-races at their local club, with local races all around the country (and across Europe) sailing around average laps courses.

The SailRacer GPS App and trackers will record the number of laps sailed, distance sailed and average time. No local race Committee is required, and sailors choose when to start within a starting window, their local course is conveyed to sailors by their club-lead before the start. Results are then combined centrally to build up a National results leaderboard.

Making extensive use of technology to help with self-distancing briefings and prize-giving will all be handled online, with a post-race drink in the virtual club house via Zoom.

RYA National Race Officer James Ripley has kindly agreed to be PRO for this unique event and should there be any protests these will be handled online.

Using SailRacer's experience of live streaming of championships the 2020 Solo National Club Race event will be broadcast via Facebook live with top Olympic coach Jon Emmett providing expert commentary, with sailor interviews and updates from a number of clubs.

The 2020 Solo National Club Race event will also raise funds for the NHS Charities and RNLI. Online entry will open early June via the SailRacer website.

"It's great to be working with SailRacer to make use of available technology to keep interest in Solo sailing during these challenging times. The Class promised its members that it would be working hard to support sailors at grass roots. After holding a very exciting day's VR sailing in April, this new event is a great way we can get sailing on the water while encouraging safe sailing at members home clubs. Sailors will also be able to compare their result against some of the Class top sailors.

Doug Latta, Solo Class President comments: "With probably 2,500 Solos still racing at club level, my ambition is to get every Solo racing on that day! We know local variations will mean the overall leaderboard won't necessarily mean those at the top will include the usual suspects. Maybe we will see some new Class Club Champions identified. I really hope you support this initiative, and I look forward to seeing you all on the water."

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