With just a few weeks to go, entries are building for the sixth annual Heaven Can Wait 24 Hour charity yacht race around Lake Macquarie. The race starts at 1100 hours on Saturday October 1, and finishes 24 hours later at noon (with the extra hour due to daylight saving starting that weekend).
The event raises money for the NSW Cancer Council and Marine Rescue Lake Macquarie; in 2010, with nearly 70 yachts on the startline, it raised more that $40,000.
The entire entry process – which is via the Heaven Can Wait website at www.heavencanwait.com.au
– is done online, and includes the automated set up of an EveryDayHero donations page for each yacht which enters.
Crew, family, friends, work colleagues and other supporters can then donate money to individual boats – with a 'virtual' race also held for the boat team that raises the most money.
This virtual race has already started and 'Granny Gen' is the early leader. 'Granny Jen' was christened in March in honour of the late Jeanette Rowe who was a great friend and tireless support to many people from all walks of life.
According to Heaven Can Wait Yacht Club commodore Shaun Lewicki, the iconic race is one of the least expensive sailing events around.
As with the 2010 event, entry fees have been kept to just $50 for the 24 Hour Race and $30 for the One Lap Dash, and $70 for participants in both
These fees apply to each boat that raises at least $500 (24 Hour Race) or $200 (One Lap Dash) in sponsorship via the Heaven Can Wait EveryDayHero charity fundraising website
'Most regattas involving a single two or three hour race will cost $30-100 to enter, so to be able to participate in one of Australia’s great sailing races – and which is open to all types of boats – sailing overnight around a fantastic piece of water, for $50 represents very good value for money,' said Lewicki.
'We’ve deliberately kept the entry costs as low as possible, while making it easy for people to carry out online fundraising through their crew, family, friends, colleagues and other supporters,' he said.
Forever Young heading down to the Wangi mark during the 2010 Heaven Can Wait One Lap Dash. - Heaven Can Wait Regatta October 2010 - HCW Media
The HCW charity race concept was conceived and organised by Lewicki, a Lake Macquarie sailor and cancer survivor, to raise funds for cancer research, awareness and support programs, with a particular emphasis on men’s cancer.
Those doing the HCW 24 Hour Race sail around the 28 Nm course for 24 hours, while the One Lap Dash involves a single lap of the course during daylight hours (and with a shorter course for non-sportsboat trailer-sailer yachts).
The event kicks off with the Heaven Can Wait Friday night dinner at RMYC Toronto, which again will feature local sailing superstar Nathan Outteridge. Defending his Heaven Can Wait One Lap Dash Race record of two hours seven minute and 31 seconds will be one of Australia’s hottest London 2012 Olympic Gold Medal prospects, Nathan Outteridge from Wangi Wangi. Nathan is the current Moth World Champion and former 49er World Champion.
Outteridge and his fellow Lake Macquarie crew Iain Jensen, the 2009 49er World Champions, have been impressive at the Olympic test event venue in Weymouth, adding the 2011 Olympic test event victory to their three consecutive Gold medals at the Sail for Gold Regatta.
For this year’s pre-race dinner, Nathan and another Australian Olympic prospect will talk about their pre-race preparation and program for the 2012 London Olympics.
Then on the Saturday morning (October 1), up to 100 boats will head off around Lake Macquarie for the 24 Hour Race and One Lap Dash.
One Lap Dash boats will finish their race back at Toronto, while the 24 Hour Race yachts will continue sailing through the night, finishing at midday on Sunday October 2.
Supporters can donate to their favourite boats and crew by going to www.heavencanwait.com.au
and clicking on the 2011 List of Entries. Clicking on the name of their chosen boat will bring up the donations page for that boat. Boats can also be searched for by the names of skipper or crew members.
For further information, please go to the HCW website at www.heavencanwait.com.au