Fifteen teams from across the marine industry set sail yesterday from Port Solent to compete in the 2016 Survitec Group Marine Industry Regatta.
The teams enjoyed breakfast and a pre-race briefing at the Port House before the fleet of Sunsail Match 40’s left the marina at 09:30. With Ian Walker, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing Skipper and winner of the Volvo Ocean Race, competing as skipper on the JMST/ASSF boat, the pressure was on as the teams made for the racecourse.
The weather conditions were tricky with a blustery northerly, which gusted up to 28knts.
The first of three extremely competitive races saw Marine Resources leading the fleet off the line and into an unassailable lead. The second race was again won by the team from Marine Resources who showed some excellent boat handling in the increasing breeze. The final race win went to Wetsuit Outlets who picked there way through the front of the fleet as the wind dropped and then built again.
The fleet made its way back to Port Solent, arriving at 16:30 to the sound of jazz music and the smells of BBQ in the air.
The prize giving and BBQ, sponsored by Marine Resources and Marine Superstore, was kicked off by the hugely entertaining guest speaker - Ian Walker. Ian informed the teams and guests about the work of JMST and how they support young people into competitive sailing. He also spoke about his most recent triumph, Hell on High Seas, which raised over £1million for Sport Relief.
Marine Resources was awarded first place and presented with the Boating Business Trophy, with the 2nd place Greg O’Brien Trophy going to Wetsuit Outlet. Both teams received a set of Artemis Racing branded Crewsaver ErgoFit Extreme lifejackets.
Sailing Today’s (Chelsea Magazines) Emma Bamford was awarded the Social Media Prize and was presented with a limited edition Hugo Boss branded Crewsaver lifejacket. The Sunsail skippers voted for the Rookie of the Day, which was awarded to 19 year old Matt Tozer winning an Abu Dhabi worn during the VOLVO ErgoFit Extreme lifejacket.
The MSS Prize - for the team who completed all races but who gained the lowest points – was awarded to Premier Marinas who each received a MUSTO cap and a £10 MSS voucher.
This fun but competitive event, sponsored by Survitec Group, raises funds for both the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation and the John Merricks Sailing Trust and is a great way to get together with other marine professionals and to entertain clients and staff. A cheque for £1700.00 was presented to Ian walker (JMST) and Richard Percy (ASSF) by Hannah Burrywood (Survitec Group) and Mike Shepherd (Marine Advertising Agency).
Speaking after the event Ian Walker said ‘What a fantastic day of competitive but fun racing with the added bonus of raising money for two great causes. I was delighted that three of the John Merricks Sailing Trust award winners were able to be on our crew for the day. The Marine Industry Regatta is definitely in my diary for next year!’