2012 GP14 World Championship - Looe Sailing Club
In August 2012, just after the Olympic closing ceremony, the GP14 fleet from around the world will descend on Looe, Cornwall. By then the British squad, potentially including the current GP14 UK National Champion, Stuart Bithell, will hopefully have won their fair share of medals in the Olympic regatta, just along the south coast at Weymouth.
Outside the Olympic program the 2012 GP14 World Championships is set to be one of biggest dinghy regattas of the year, attracting many top international sailors each seeking to get their hands on the coveted World Championship trophy. The event is limited to 130 boats and to date 53 have already been received, including entries from the current GP14 World Champions Ian Dobson and Andy Tunnicliffe and Fireball World Champions Matt Burge and Richard Wagstaff.
The Entry form, current entries and further details can be found on the event website. http://www.gp14worlds.com
The Racing in the GP14 fleet is extremely enjoyable but also very challenging. Everyone starts together from one start and therefore receives a finishing position based on the whole fleet. However, the fleet is also split into Gold, Silver and Bronze. This means that regardless of your overall position there will be something to fight for throughout the week. Youth sailors are also separately categorized. The GP14 fleet is fortunate to have a variety of world class boat manufactures and different sail makers. Boat speed difference between competitors is extremely tight though and it is the most tactically aware that will be the eventual winners.
At previous GP14 championship events, it is common to start each race with a gate start. The Race series will be 9 races + a practice race on the Sunday of the regatta. It is also common to have a spare race day planned for the Wednesday. If conditions throughout the week are kind, this is an opportunity to relax and enjoy the venue away from sailing.
The GP14 fleet are renowned for having a good time both on and off the water. You can expect a full social program at the World Championship, including daily sponsored prizes after each days racing. Further details of this will follow in due course.
MORE INFORMATION ABOUT LOOE…
Looe is accustomed to holding large sailing regattas, including the 2011 Enterprise Nationals as well as several of the major fleets over the last few years. Located on the eastern edge of Cornwall at the mouth of the East & West Looe rivers, Looe is geared to tourism and as you’d expect there is a great range of accommodation available; from camping, caravanning, self-catering houses & flats and B&B’s to first class hotels. A selection of accommodation websites can be found below. The recommendation from the GP14 Championship Committee is to get your accommodation booked as early as possible.
If looking for self catering in Looe itself, the town is split in two, East and West. Both sides offer a range of places, many within walking distance of the sailing club on the East side. Car parking in Looe is a challenge, the town being made up of narrow streets between quaint fisherman’s cottages with a plethora of eating places and shops aimed at the tourists and locals alike. The sailing club is located near the mouth of the river on the East Looe side of the town, access to which is through the narrow streets. There is only permit parking near to the club which means the week needs to be seen as being as car-free as possible. As far as launching is concerned, there are two wide slipways, one into the river, the other onto the beach, which will allow the large fleet to leave and return to shore easily.
The dinghy park is right next to the main beach of Looe on the promenade which will be the centre of boat storage for the duration of the championship. Sailing families will undoubtedly appreciate the fact that the sailors will be leaving and returning to the heart of Looe, pulling the boats up the safe sandy beach within a few metres of the clubhouse. For the more energetic entourage, there are various coastal footpaths and inland walkways, with fantastic views of the racing area, as well as choices of boating and fishing trips around the local coastline.
Outside of the town, the surrounding area is definitely worth a visit; Bodmin Moor and the infamous Jamaica Inn are a short drive to the north, while 30 minutes drive to the east crossing the river at Torpoint takes you to the historic and busy naval city of Plymouth. This offers a chance to shop and visit the National Marine Aquarium. Head west and within 30 minutes of Looe you will find the Eden Project, where Tim Smit brought his inspirational ideas to reality in a disused clay pit, to highlight man’s relationship with the plants around us. The highlight of Eden is a platform high above the Tropical Rainforest biome where you stand way above the tallest trees, taking in the humidity and panoramic view. Also westwards are the fishing villages of Mevagissey and Mousehole as well as the county town of Truro.
Looe’s Tourist Information office can be contacted on 01503 262072. You can find good accommodation information on the following websites:
It really promises to be a great week.
Be part of it.
Championship Committee - 28th November 2011