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RL Sailing ready for the Rolex Fastnet Race

by RL Sailing 28 Jul 06:56 PDT
Tour De Bretagne a La Voile © Alemany.fr

The Irish Offshore Sailing team RL Sailing, sponsored by Hanley Energy, recently completed the gruelling Tour De Bretagne a La Voile. The famous race was spread across several stages over nine days, with a combination of inshore and offshore racing in the one design Beneteau Figaro 3 fleet.

RL Sailing finished with a final 24th place in the overall series and fifth in the mixed teams. The race was an opportunity for the team to learn and progress in their first season of racing doublehanded in the circuit. The intense racing that included coastal races from port to port as well as inshore and offshore battles, provided the perfect environment to test speed, tactics and manoeuvres against a closely packed fleet. The event also brought in aspects of small boat racing as every start line was hotly contended with general recalls abundant and a huge significance placed on the first upwind leg.

"This event was much more intense that we ever previously thought it would be. It really challenges you as a sailor on every level. The format of short intense races really pushed the fleet and no race was ever over. Every place and position were hard fought!", said skipper Kenneth Rumball.

"The shorter legs in this race meant we had more opportunity for post-race discussion and analysis and the chance to try different things the next day. Our goal for this race was to learn and improve as much as possible and with the support of Hanley Energy we certainly achieved that." continues Skipper Pamela Lee

For RL Sailing, the Tour De Bretagne was the team's second Figaro 3 doublehanded race having competed in the Sardinha Cup in April this year. Both races have been a completely different format and challenge, with the Sardinha Cup including a stage over 500 nautical miles and lasting five days. The next and final race on the 2021 calendar for the team is the Rolex Fastnet Race from Cowes to Cherbourg.

The Figaro fleet is racing in its own class within the race, and it will once again be a completely different challenge for the team as the one design boats will be mixed in with the larger fleet of over 500 boats from all over the world. The complexities for a bigger fleet and a one design race within it, as well as very different sailing conditions across the Irish Sea will make for an exciting and challenging race.

"I'm really looking forward to the next challenge of the Fastnet, it's going to be a great opportunity to get stuck into some complex navigation and continue learning and improving, and of course representing Ireland in doublehanded offshore racing.", comments Skipper Pamela Lee

"We put a lot of thought into our sponsorships and partner with unique and interesting sports and talents outside the mainstream. RL Sailing's recent accomplishment and next big challenge certainly live up to this.", says Hanley's Kim Madden.

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