The crème of British sailing, both amateur and full-time, are set for another showdown on Wednesday (15 April) at 16:00 BST online within the Virtual Regatta Inshore game.
This time it’s all to play for as they jostle and compete for five places in the final of the RYA and YachtsandYachting.com’s ‘The Lockdown Cup’ which will take place on Wednesday, 22 April.
Within the final they will compete against five members of the public who will be selected from over hundreds of online applications that are being received. The applications will be filtered using a criteria covering everything from experience of using the Virtual Regatta Inshore game to their motivation to beat the best of the UK dinghy scene over the next few days to select the five challengers.
The races will once again be live streamed and can be viewed on the Sail-World.com and YachtsandYachting.com homepages.
Yachts and Yachting Online’s Mark Jardine will once again be commentating and doing his best to distract the competing sailors. This time he will be joined by ex-Pro sailor and America’s Cup and Match Racing commentator, Andy Green, who will undoubtedly bring his experience of top competition and the virtual racing world to bear.
In anticipation of tomorrow’s play-off, Mark said: “After the excitement, chaos, bashes and banter of the eSailing Demonstration Event, we’re all raring to go for The Lockdown Cup. The best of British sailing are in it to try and make it through to round two and take on the winners of our competition.”
Here’s the line-up of competitors for tomorrow’s play-off:
- Luke Patience – British Sailing Team, Olympic 470 silver medallist, joint 3rd in the Demonstration Event and always up there and battling for the lead. He will undoubtedly be looking for pay-back from some of his BST team mates who, according to Luke, were being mean and devious!
- Sam Whaley – ex-Laser National Champion, Musto clothing model, UK Waszp supremo and Virtual Regatta addict. Can he better his 6th place in the demonstration event?
- Christian Birrell – ex-Merlin Rocket National Champion and fairly new to the VR game which hindered his performance in the demo event. How much has he been practicing over the last couple of weeks?
- Stu Bithell – British Sailing Team 49er crew and silver medallist at the 2012 Olympics with Luke. A joint 3rd place in the Demo event with Luke and Ben. He certainly seems to have mastered the game will be a safe bet for one of the five final spots.
- Katie Burridge – Laser 2000 national champion and winners of the Selden Sailjuice Winter Series in 2019. Katie was missing her helm, Simon, in the Demo event but will she have him on speed dial for tomorrow’s battle?
- Jonny McGovern – ex-470 national champion and well-renowned 420 and 470 coach. He demonstrated glimmers of mastery in the demo event and he will undoubtedly have been practicing in the last couple of weeks with his sailors. One to watch.
- Andy ‘Taxi’ Davies – Multiple national champion, owner of HD Sails and well known within the Solo and Merlin Rocket fleets. Certainly started to get the hang of things within the demo event, but how will he cope without taking matters back to his sail loft in between events?
- David Hivey – Well known within the RS, Laser, Musto Skiff and Moth fleets. Rumour has it, he’s been practicing daily since the schools were closed. Will this allow him to go one better than his 2nd place in the Demo event?
- Sam Watson – GP14 National champion and ex-29er sailor. There or there about in the Demo event but rumour has it that he’s been practicing alongside his fellow Hollingworth Lake compatriots.
- Fynn Sterritt – British Sailing Team 49er crew. Blamed not having a better performance on having to make decisions (which is normally the job of his helm). However, this didn’t stop him finishing up within the top 10 overall and he’s certainly going into this pay off as a dark horse and one to watch.
- Nick Craig – National champion in more classes than we could possible mention here. He blamed not being able to make the Demo event on work commitments. We think he was buying time for more practice. He’s going into this play-off as an unknown and will undoubtedly very quickly find his feet.
- Elidh MacIntyre – Olympic 470 crew and member of the British Sailing Team. Very consistent in the Demo event but, unfortunately for her, consistently outside of the top 10. Her helm Hannah Mills will have undoubtedly given her pep talk between then and now and she’ll come out fighting!
- Matt Mee – GP14, RS200 and Merlin Rocket guru. Flashes of brilliance in the Demo event and more time playing the game would have undoubtedly put him into the top 5. He will probably have that by now and so will be a safe bet.
- Adam McGovern – The RYA’s Virtual Regatta expert which was highlighted by his win at the Demo Event (and we didn’t rig the game, honestly!). He has certainly set out his stall for tomorrow’s play-off but will he be seen by others as a target to see off early?
Make sure you tune in tomorrow (Wednesday, 15 April) at 16:00 BST to watch the action unfold on the Sail-World.com and YachtsandYachting.com homepages. See you there!
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by Loretta Spridgeon