Lonely Rock Race 2020

Lonely Rock Race

16th August 2020

Lonely Rock Race 2020

The Royal Western Yacht Club of England in Plymouth is excited to announce the RWYC ‘Lonely Rock Race’ 2020.

In association with The Royal Victoria Yacht Club, this biennial Race will start from the vicinity of Ryde in the Eastern Solent. The course will leave the Isles of Scilly to Port, round the Fastnet Rock to Port, pass the Isles of Scilly once again to Port and finally finish in Plymouth Sound.

Overview

The name ‘Lonely Rock’ is a loose translation of the Gaelic name – ‘An Charraig Aonair’ for Fastnet Rock. The original course dates back to 1925, when two members of the RWYC famously made a bet on who could win a race around this notorious landmark, starting from Ryde and Finishing in the Port of Plymouth. Now, the RWYC is bringing the Corinthian spirit back to the race with emphasis on the club sailor with a desire to take on this famous course. The Entry will be open to mono and multi hull yachts between 30 and 60 feet in length.

Chris Arscott, RWYC Commodore, explains “It is our intention to run a Corinthian race on alternate years to the RORC Fastnet Race. We realise that there are a number of sailors and boats that may struggle to finish the RORC Fastnet Race in time for work on the following Monday due to its new length. The ‘Lonely Rock Race’ is in no way intended to replace the RORC Fastnet Race and is nothing to do with RORC in any way; indeed it is to be held in opposite years to RORC’s race and as such offers an additional opportunity to enjoy one of the most challenging Corinthian offshore race courses in the world.”

The RWYC ‘Lonely Rock Race’ will start on the 16th August 2020.

Further information and Notice of Race on the RWYC ‘Lonely Rock Race’ to follow shortly.

Official Event Clothing Range Now Available

It is with great pleasure that the Royal Western Yacht Club is able to announce ‘Zhik’ as our Official Clothing Partner for the Lonely Rock Race. Additionally, we are delighted to announce ‘Crew Kit’ of Cowes as our Official Branding & Clothing Provider for the race.

Zhik and Crew Kit have developed a stunning range of quality Race Clothing to celebrate this unique event. Boats will compete to win the Zhik Overall Line Honours Trophy which includes a prize of kit worth over £600. All boats entering will be given a branded laptop case to keep those all-important race documents or the navigator laptop safe onboard.

Next Event Begins In…

Lonely Rock Race Event Partner Offers

Bronze

Invitation for 2 to the Commodores Reception to meet the skippers at RWYC Plymouth

Banner / flag in race village (supplied by the company)

Listed on the event website – Facebook page & Event Brochure

Social media coverage on event Facebook page

£2,000

Advertising in Event Race Brochure

Full page £500

Half page £250

Quarter page £125

Silver

Invitation for 2 to the Commodores Reception to meet the skippers at RWYC Plymouth

Banner / flag in race village (supplied by the company)

Listed on the event website – Facebook page & Event Brochure

Social media coverage on event Facebook page

Invitation for 2 to go afloat to watch the start in Plymouth Sound from a spectator vessel

£3,000

Gold

Invitation for 2 to the Commodores Reception to meet the skippers at RWYC Plymouth

Banner / flag in race village (supplied by the company)

Listed on the event website – Facebook page & Event Brochure

Social media coverage on event Facebook page

Invitation for 2 to go afloat to watch the start in Plymouth Sound from a spectator vessel

Invitation for 2 to attend the Half Crown Club party at the National Marine Aquarium – Reef

Invitation for 2 to attend the Awards ceremony – October 2020

£4,000

Contact

Commodore RWYC
Chris Arscott: chris@arscott.co.uk

Race Director
Chris Arscott: chris@arscott.co.uk

Assitant Race Director
Adrian Gray: lrr@rwyc.org

Race Details

Dates

Sunday 16th August 2020

Contacts

Race Director
Sailing Secretary

Social Media

TBC

Entry & Payment

Please pay the entry fee when you complete the Entry Form below. Payment may be made online or by bank transfer.

Race Documents

Lonely Rock Race 2020 Notice of Race

Lonely Rock Race 2020 Entry Form  – Please download this document, complete, and email as an attachment to lrr@rwyc.org

Race Tracking

OSTAR Background

The Single-handed Transatlantic Race was devised by ‘Blondie’ Hasler in 1957 as a sporting event to encourage the development of equipment and techniques for shorthanded oceanic sailing that would benefit the wider sailing community.  The course, across the North Atlantic against the prevailing winds and currents, sets a significant test of seamanship.

The first race was run in 1960 after Hasler had finally obtained sponsorship from the Observer Newspaper and interested the Royal Western Yacht Club in organising the event which became known as the OSTAR.  Five competitors started and remarkably five finished!  The race was won by Francis Chichester in Gipsy Moth III, the largest boat in the fleet at 40 feet.

The second race in 1964 attracted 15 starters and was won by Eric Tabarly in the 44ft Pen Duick II. For his achievement he was awarded the Légion d’Honneur by President de Gaulle. France’s love affair with short-handed oceanic racing and the OSTAR (or Transat Anglaise) was established.

The founders of the OSTAR 1960
Race start - OSTAR 1984

By 1976 the number of competitors had grown to 125 and the largest boat was Alain Colas’ 236ft Club Mediterranée. The growth of the race attracted the disapproval of the “establishment” and the RWYC came under pressure to restrict both boat size and the number of boats in the fleet.

But with the popularity of the race ever growing, the 1980 race had over twice as many applicants as could be accepted.  The decision was made in 1978 to run a second race to accommodate the overflow.  However, as a further gesture to the critics (as well as satisfying a demand from further competitors), this race would be for boats sailed by a crew of two – the Two-handed Transatlantic Race or TWOSTAR – raced in 1981.

The OSTAR continued to grow in popularity particularly with the ‘professional’ 50 and 60 ft boat skippers for whom the OSTAR was a points-scoring event on their racing calendar and a qualifier for the round-the-world events. While winning was essential for the heavily sponsored skippers, the less ‘professional’ participants entered for the challenge of crossing the North Atlantic often competing in small family cruisers.

By 2000 the ‘Grand Prix’ boats made up half the fleet and their accompanying media circus dominated the race, little attention was paid to the smaller less- (or un-) sponsored boats. The Club took the decision to split the race and have a commercially-run ‘Grand Prix’ event for the large classes while continuing ownership of, and the running, of the classic or ‘Corinthian’ OSTAR.

The return of the OSTAR (the O standing for Original) to the Corinthian ideals of Blondie Hasler was welcome and many experienced OSTAR skippers entered the 2005 edition. The race continued successfully, without a break, to the present.

The Club’s original transatlantic shorthanded races, the OSTAR and TWOSTAR, raised the interest in shorthanded sailing in France and worldwide. There have been many copies, transatlantic and round-the-world, but most have come and gone and the remainder are commercially run events. The OSTAR remains a unique Corinthian race against the prevailing winds and currents of the North Atlantic that is open to all, amateur and professional, and run by a Yacht Club.

The sixteenth OSTAR will now be sailed in conjunction with the seventh TWOSTAR celebrating 60 years of shorthanded oceanic racing at the Royal Western Yacht Club and the 60th anniversary of the start of it all – the first and Original Singlehanded Transatlantic Race.

For the history of the race please visit OSTAR History

OSTAR Start 2017

Event Partners