Sidmouth all set for a busy weekend of gig racing and surf life saving action
- Credit: Archant
The second weekend of July is set to to see Sidmouth sea front a serious hive of activity as the town plays host top two major water sports events.
Saturday sees the staging of the 2019 Sidmouth Gig Club Regatta with gig crews from around the South West taking part in a series of races.
This year Sidmouth Gig Club will be joined by boats from Bristol, Weymouth, Swanage, Bridport, Poole, Exmouth, Portland, Langstone, Lyme Regis and Combwich; making a total of 14 boats.
Each year the club selects a date when there will be a low tide, leaving plenty of sandy beach for the boats to land on to change crews between races.
The races will start at 10am and continue through to mid-afternoon.
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There will be men's and ladies' crews, plus vets, super vets and mixed, taking part in the racing.
A new addition to this year's regatta is the inclusion of junior racing.
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The course starts just off Clifton Beach and follows a triangle, with the home leg close to the shore, and easily visible from the esplanade.
Spectators are warmly invited to follow the races from the beach and the Esplanade, and enjoy the refreshments which the club will be providing.
Sunday then sees Sidmouth Surf Life Saving Club hosting the Longest Day Challenge when Sidmouth beach will be filled with competitors battling the ocean, and each other, in surf lifesaving board and ski racing events in Sidmouth Surf Lifesaving Club's second, 'Longest Day Ocean Challenge' event - following the successful first event last year
This event provides opportunities for all ages, from eight to 60, to participate in an ocean-based event - as well as a spectacle for on-lookers.
The event is growing year on year with a 15km-long distance ocean ski and outrigger event for 2019 attracting some of the best endurance paddlers in the country. There are expected to be around 200 competitors taking part in the two elements of the event. Sidmouth Surf Lifesaving Club, Sidmouth Lifeboat and Sidmouth Sailing Club will provide in-water support and water safety cover. Local law firm Gilbert and Stephens will support the event as uniform sponsors for the club. Races will run between 12.15pm and 2.30pm when paddlers will take to the water, bringing the sea alive with colour and activity.