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West Lancashire Yacht Club's 24 Hour Race goes online for 2020

by Mike Pickering 22 May 05:00 PDT 19-20 September 2020
53rd West Lancashire Yacht Club 24 Hour Race © Roy Kissick

Hosts of the UK's No. 1 Endurance Dinghy event, West Lancashire Yacht Club, set to launch an eSailing alternative for the 24 Hour Race.

Today West Lancashire Yacht Club (WLYC) announced their intentions to host a unique eSailing endurance event in September 2020 as the COVID-19 global pandemic forces organisers to postpone any on-the-water 24hr Hour Race events until 2021.

The 54th edition of the West Lancs 24hr Hour Race was scheduled to take place on 19th & 20th September 2020 on the Marine Lake in Southport, UK. Rob Pickering, WLYC Rear Commodore and 24hr Hour Race executive said "From February to May routine life has changed for so many of us, and even though September is still a fair way away, it's just not possible to predict when we will return to normal or what the new normal will look like. We appreciate that the cancellation of the full 24 Hour Race is disappointing news. But over the weekend, but with up to 2000 people expected on site (including 800 competitors plus as many as 250 volunteers keeping the event going), we cannot ensure the Health, safety and well-being of all involved. Your safety is of paramount importance, to ensure that we can all meet again at many other events in the future."

He added "It is with great excitement that thanks to the recent advances in eSport technology, particularly in eSailing, we're able to offer the race's long-standing supporters a real alternative to our traditional on-the-water format. This virtual event will not only keep the inter-club competitive element of our unique race alive, but it will also incorporate that "end of season" social scene, for which the 24hr Hour Race has become well known for."

Dr Richard Stubbs, WLYC Commodore said, "Whilst it's disappointing that we have had to bow to the inevitable and cancel the water based 24Hr Race, we hope that the eSailing alternative will go some way to preserving the family atmosphere of the event." He added "We'll see you on the water again in 2021!"

The Notice of Race and full details of this unique eSailing endurance event will be release on 1st July 2020. Those interested or wishing to take part are asked to express their interest by signing up to race updates via bit.ly/24-esail-interest

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