The Fastnet 450 is an offshore sailing race, organised by the South Coast Offshore Racing Association (‘SCORA’) in association with the National Yacht Club and the Royal Cork Yacht Club.
The race will start in Dun Laoghaire on Saturday 22nd August 2020 and pass the Muglin, Tuscar, Conningbeg and Fastnet lighthouses to Starboard before returning to Cork Harbour and finishing at Roches’s Point. It is envisaged that the race will take between 2 and 3 days.
20 boats of varying sizes from c. 33 feet to 45 feet have entered the race and crew numbers on each boat vary from c. 2 – 10 people. This event is open to Irish boats only with no overseas boats competing or invited to compete.
This is a behind closed doors sporting event, spectators will be able to tracks the boats from their homes via a live tracking app.
The race will be governed by COVID-19 guidelines as laid out by Irish Sailing and both organising clubs; this requirement is stated in the Notice of Race for the event. These guidelines include-
1. There will be no gatherings, social or otherwise. The race registration was completed online and the race briefings and prize giving are taking place via Zoom. When competitors depart Dublin and arrive in Cork, there are no social events whatsoever.
2. All sailors must complete a health declaration form to confirm their current health status, their recent travel movements and whether they have received any specific medial advice regarding COVID-19.
3. Event organisers hold crew lists for each boat to support contact tracing.
4. Competing boats have been operating the ‘Pod’ system since multi-handed sailing became possible again earlier this summer. The principles of the pod system are as follows-
➢ A ‘pod’ is a group of 2 or more household units involved in an activity together where social distancing may not always be completely possible
➢ Although there is no limit on numbers, pod size should be kept to a minimum – the smaller the pod, the lower the risk
➢ People within the pod should maintain social distancing where possible
➢ Pods should remain together for a minimum amount of time
➢ People within the pod should change position as much as possible to minimize the time spent in close proximity to another member of the pod
➢ People within the pod should be aware of slipstream effect and avoid being directly down wind of others in the pod as much as possible
➢ People from different pods should not mix with people from another pod
Through the measures above, race organisers have satisfied themselves that they are operating within the current COVID-19 guidelines however, as is always the case and is stipulated in section 23 of the sailing instructions, each skipper is responsible for the safety of his or her vessel and her crew and the decision to partake is at the sole discretion of each competitor.
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