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A model yacht race that began more than 40 years

ago, as a bit of end of term fun for Southampton Solent University yacht design

and production students, will take to the waters this June


than 28 first-year yacht designers of the future will be racing their craft at

Gosport Boating Lake on Friday 6 June.


annual race now forms part of the first-year unit assessment for Southampton

Solent University yacht design and production students.


have spent 70 hours designing and building the vessels to conform to the ‘metre

classed’ yacht design rules, with 85% of the unit mark awarded on their

computer aided design, and the build quality of their models.


students then have to race them upwind and downwind to pass their design unit, with

the final 15% of marks awarded on how their yacht performs on race day.


Barkley, senior lecturer in BEng (Hons) Yacht and Powercraft Design says:

“As well as being a fun way to end the year, the boat race allows our

students to put into practice the academic theory they have learnt during their

first year at University.”


year’s winning yacht was designed by first-year BEng (Hons) Yacht Production

and Surveying student Alice Courage from Poole in Dorset, the first woman to

win the race since it began.


winners of the model yacht race have gone on to enjoy great success within the

industry. On the sailing side, Herve Piveteau sailed to victory in the

Production Boat Class at the Mini Transat 2008, the French equivalent of the

OSTAR and Jason Ker went on to design the last South African, America’s Cup



course graduates also include Guillame Verdier, who designed the yachts that

came both first and second in last year’s Vendee Globe; 2008 Olympic gold

medallist, Paul Goodison; and Helena Lucas, who won Great Britain’s first ever sailing

gold at the 2012 Paralympics.

This year’s race will be hosted by Gosport Model Yacht & Boat Club at

Gosport Boating Lake on Friday 6 June.  Members of the public are welcome to come along and spectate.

The students will be practising on the lake from 11am and the races will begin

at 2pm.