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  • Writer's pictureDavid Connolly

Rolex Fastnet Race – Pushing crews to their limits

Founded in 1925, the biennial Rolex Fastnet Race is revered by sailors worldwide as a supreme test of seamanship. Starting from the Isle of Wight in southern England, this 695-nautical mile offshore classic pushes the big fleet of Corinthian and professional crews to their limits, exposing them to challenging Atlantic weather systems as they negotiate the open waters of the Celtic Sea before rounding the mythical Fastnet Rock off the southern tip of Ireland. In 2021, Tom Kneen and the British crew of Sunrise lifted the coveted Fastnet Challenge Cup after taking overall honours on corrected time. The race – which exceptionally finished in Cherbourg, France, rather than Plymouth – marked 20 years of Rolex’s partnership with the event and its organizer, the Royal Ocean Racing Club, as part of its wide-ranging support for yachting dating back more than 60 years.

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