Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
The Fastnet race is a yachting race in the United Kingdom. It is considered one of the classic offshore races. It happens every two years, and is a course of 608 miles. The course is unusual, as it begins off Cowes, travels to the Fastnet Rock off the southwest coast of Ireland, which they round, and then back to Plymouth via the south side of the Scilly Isles. The prize is known as the Fastnet Challenge Cup.
The race was part of the Admiral's Cup racing series from 1957 to 1999.
The International Offshore Rule (IOR) was introduced in 1973, and the yachts and crews began taking sponsorships.
Storms during the 1979 race resulted in the deaths of 17 competitors. This led to a major overhaul of the rules and the equipment required for the competition.
The race drew further attention from outside the sport in 1985 when the maxi-yacht Drum capsized after her experimental keel sheared off. Pop star Simon Le Bon, co-owner and crew member of Drum, was trapped under the hull with five other crew members for twenty minutes, until being rescued by the Royal Navy.
The 2005 race is sponsored by Rolex and is organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club with the Royal Yacht Squadron and the Royal Western Yacht Club , Plymouth. The race will start on Sunday 7 August 2005.
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