FAST40+ Class Heads West, Race Circuit - Round Two
Wednesday, May 23, 2018 9:45 AM
The 2018 FAST40+ Race Circuit continues this weekend with eleven teams racing at the International Paint Poole Regatta for Round Two of the FAST40+ Circuit. This will be the first FAST40+ Regatta to be held outside of the Solent, forming the showcase class for the event, all of the Fast 40+ boats will be based at Poole Quay Marina.
Eight races are scheduled over three days of thrilling close-quarters action, including technical windward leeward courses and more strategic round the cans racing. The FAST40+ Class will have on the water judges, and will race in Poole Bay and surrounding waters.
Niklas Zennstrom's Carkeek designed Rán VII impressed last month winning Round One, Adrian Stead will be calling tactics for the team, which is a mixture of seasoned professionals and young hand-picked talent. Stead grew up in Poole, before racing into two Olympic Games, the America's Cup, and winning multiple prestigious events, both inshore and offshore.
“Apart from the start of the Fastnet, the last time I raced in Poole Bay was a qualifier for the Olympics in 1990, so I am having to do a lot of homework.” explained Adrian Stead. “It is a complex bay with a double high tide in the northern part, and a complicated tidal flow outside Poole Harbour, as well as a different tidal flow offshore. Having said that the tide will not be as strong as it was in the Solent for the first round, so whilst the effects will be there, a more subtle approach will be required. The first day of the regatta will be the ninth day we have raced the new Rán, so we are on a steep learning curve. I must say that the boat is fantastic to sail; very responsive, with a great power to weight ratio. The five young members of the team are so enthusiastic, which is really refreshing, and I have to say it is great to be sailing in the UK.”
Andrew Pearce returns to the FAST40+ Class racing Ker40+ Magnum4, having missed last season due to injury. A member of Parkstone YC for over 20 years, Andrew is the President of the Poole Regatta. “It is with some trepidation to come back to racing after 18 months away but I am thrilled to be racing at this regatta.” commented Andrew Pearce. “The FAST40+ owners unanimously agreed to come to Poole, because it is a fantastic place to race, and a new venue outside the Solent. The regatta committee have given 100% and will provide a great event. We have in excess of 140 teams entered for the regatta and all of them, including the FAST40+ Class, will be eligible for the Canford Cup, which pre-dates the America's Cup by two years.”
The FAST40+ Class produces thrilling close racing; in Round One, eight teams made the podium, including Irish debutant Niall Dowling, racing Ker40+ Pace. Another top Irish helmsman is returning to the Fast40+ fold for Round Two. Anthony O'Leary will be driving Peter Morton's CF40+ Girls on Film, as Morty is recovering from shoulder surgery. “It was like Christmas, when I got the call from Morty.” commented O'Leary. “The FAST40+ Class is wonderful to race in, and I will be keen on doing my best for a very talented team.”