Harken Saturday Series to kick off new season on May 4

Harken Saturday Series to kick off new season on May 4
Colin Hall
The first of the new Harken-sponsored Saturday Series on May 4 kick starts the racing season at the Royal Southern Yacht Club. Commencing at 1430hrs at the end of the River Hamble and back in time for tea, the new Series will also mark the Club's first use of the new RYA National Handicap for Cruisers (NHC) handicapping system.

Like the recently announced Gaastra Friday Series, the intention behind the Harken Saturday Series is to provide the maximum amount of sailing in the minimum time away from home and family, and acknowledges and acts on the findings of the Club's surveys and Seminar feedback over the winter.

The NoR is online here.

In addition to the IRC Classes, NHC handicaps will also be used for Club Class handicapping in the first passage race, Hamble - Yarmouth - Hamble on 27 - 28 April, and in the Club's May Regatta on 11-12 May. For the Saturday of the May Regatta, the IRC Classes will race with the Royal Southampton YC's Clarkson Cup, so for the first time building the fleet sizes for that IRC Solent Series event.

The 51st Cowes Deauville Race on 24 May will also feature NHC for Club Class as well as IRC. At 1830hrs that same day, the Gaastra Friday Series commences with more short sharp racing under NHC, around the cans and back in the bar for a beer and banter.

Rear Commodore Sailing, Karen Henderson-Williams commented, 'Both the Harken and Gaastra Series and the NHC system for Club Class pick up on what people told us they wanted, which is more racing taking up less time. We thank Harken for supporting our Saturday Series with some serious prizes and now look forward to some good competition for both cruisers and sports boats.'

For any sports boats without a mooring on the River, the Club has a special arrangement with the Harbour Master for competitors in these Series, so for Classes without their own start, there's a handicap Class and a mooring to go with it.

The 2013 Racing Programme and entry details are available on the Club's website.