25 of the world’s best powerboat racers will descend on Galway Harbour next year to race in 1,000 miles of challenging seas along the Irish coastline across seven days of intense competition, writes from British powerboat Champion Richard Carr.
Thousands of race fans are expected to descend on Galway Harbour to witness the stopover of the Venture Cup; a race described as the longest, toughest and prestigious powerboat race in the world. Using the Aran Islands as a chicane along the route, the races held over four days from June 16 and involving vessels that have broken speed records of 244mph will be visible from the Prom in Salthill.
“Not only will spectators see them race in Galway Bay, because of the uniqueness of our harbour, the public will get the chance to get up close to these boats – possibly even get on board. They really are magnificent,” said Harbour Master Captain Brian Sheridan.
“There are aspirations to turn it into a mini-Volvo Ocean Race but that all depends on the marketing drive and how the organisers get their message out there. It won’t be as big as 2012, but there should be food stalls, prize giving and entertainment along the harbour.”
1,000 people made up of onshore crew and competitors will be in Galway, while Captain Sheridan expects 5,000 fans to attend the event. However, organisers believe that between Cork, Dingle, Galway, Killybegs, Belfast and Dublin, up to a million boat enthusiasts could descend on the ports to soak up the atmosphere.
The race is also likely to attract some celebrity competitors as pre-race favourites Vector Martini have recruited model David Gandy to their team. British adventurer and TV personality Bear Grylls is also expected to be involved in some capacity.
The race will be covered by the world’s top sports channels as the monohulled racers pass landmarks such as the Fastnet Rock, Blasket Sound and the Giant’s Causeway. The progress of the teams can be tracked through a special app.
About Richard Carr
Richard Carr, of Poole, is one of the UK’s most experienced and successful powerboat racers, who has competed in the sport globally.
He has won numerous domestic and international honours: he became British Class 1 Champion in 1991; he was the winner of the coveted Needles Trophy and he also came second in the Cowes Torquay Cowes race in 1992. It was the year the race was controversially competed in the fog and it has been argued for many years that he actually won the race.
He is known in the sport for his aggressive racing character in rough seas and recently raced in the USA for Geico in 2011.