Bart’s Virtual Sailing Championship

Published on August 27th, 2015

Following the record-breaking success of “Bart’s Bash”, the global sailing event that took place in September 2014 in aid of the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation (ASSF) and the success of the first-ever “Virtual Sailing World Championship” which took place in May 2015 on SailX.com, we are proud to announce an exciting collaboration between ASSF and SailX to run a new virtual fleet racing series. This new event is to be called “Bart’s Virtual Sailing Championship”.

Bart’s Virtual Sailing Championship is a six “Act” championship that will take place over six months of the Northern Hemisphere winter. Act 1 will take place from Sept. 1-3. Entry is free and open for the duration of the Championship. There is the opportunity to make a voluntary donation to the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation if you’re inspired.

ASSF CEO, Richard Percy commented saying “The aim of this championship is to provide sailors, clubs and coaches with an activity that will keep them active and engaged in sailing, and even improving their skills, over the sport’s (Northern Hemisphere) off-season. We see this as innovative way of continuing the great work done by Bart’s Bash in raising awareness of, and lowering entry barriers to, the sport of sailing.”

Act 1 (of 6) of Bart’s Virtual Sailing Championship will be supporting this year’s Bart’s Bash, the World’s Largest Sailing Event, which takes place September 20 at clubs all over the world. The parties’ joint ambition is to encourage as many sailors and non-sailors to participate in Bart’s Bash and to also make sailors aware how much virtual sailing can actually improve real life sailing.

First time racers will be encouraged to sign up on SailX and to use the ‘Learn to Sail’ and ‘Prepare to Race’ tools, such as the extensive help and support in their training for the Bash (e.g. pressing ‘H’ for help tips, ‘M’ to ask questions, etc). Additionally clubs and club coaches will be encouraged to sign up in order to engage members in some inter-club rivalry and to keep them having fun and learning over the winter months.

SailX Founder, Amando Estela commented saying “We are extremely proud to be chosen by the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation to run this event. We 100% share their belief that there is something special about sailing (and sailors) in that it can have a huge positive impact on individuals, particularly kids. This belief has guided SailX development over the years and we look forward to helping them make a difference.”

About the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation
The Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation was set up in 2013 to honor the life and legacy of Andrew ‘Bart’ Simpson MBE, Olympic Gold & Silver medalist who died tragically in San Francisco at the age of 36 during the build up to AC34. The charity honors a life and legacy of a very special man who was passionate about encouraging and helping others to fulfill their aims.

The Foundation’s objective is to “inspire the next generation” by using sailing to transform the lives of young people around the world. The charity aims to support, both practically and financially, the providers of sailing programs internationally, in order to break down barriers to participation and achieve its objectives.

Following a successful first round of grants, the Foundation is currently supporting 15 different projects in 4 different countries including Bermuda and South Africa. In October the Foundation will reopen the application process for Round 2. Once again they will be looking to collaborate with charitable and-not-for profit initiatives to help inspiring sailing programs be delivered internationally.

About Bart’s Bash
Bart’s Bash was conceived and first run in 2014. It grew beyond all expectations with over 30,000 people taking part (many sailing for the first time) in over 50 countries with 700+ clubs worldwide each hosting their own individual Bart’s Bash race. In total, the event raised over £350,000 for ASSF, enabling the charity to launch its global ambitions and to start to transform the lives of young people through sailing. In January 2015, Bart’s Bash was officially named as the largest sailing race in the world by Guinness World Records. The aim in 2015 is to increase participation even further across the world with the ultimate goal of becoming the world’s biggest SPORTING event.

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