Youngest ever competitor
Forty-four yachtsmen have signed up for the OSTAR (Original Single handed Trans-Atlantic Race) 2009 which departs from Plymouth on May 25th.
Briton Oscar Mead,18, is the youngest competitor to have ever taken part and is sailing a J105. He is closely followed by Rob Cumming, 19, from Plymouth who is sailing a Tripp 40.
Also attracting a lot of attention is Katie Miller who, at only 21 years old, has already been tipped as the next Ellen MacArthur and is the youngest female competitor to have entered the race, sailing a Figaro II. The OSTAR, which dates back to 1960, has received entries from Britain, Austria, France, Holland, Germany, Ireland, Italy, and the USA. The first, Rob Cummings, is 19 years old and from Plymouth. The second is Oscar Mead who will be just 18 years of age making him the youngest competitor to have ever taken part.
Also attracting a lot of attention is Katie Miller who, at only 21 years old, has already been tipped as the next Ellen MacArthur and is the youngest female competitor to have entered the race.
French sailor Anne Caseneuve will skipper the same 50 foot trimaran which she raced in OSTAR 2005 when unfortunately she damaged her knee and was forced to retire. With her sailing experience and 50 foot boat she stands a very good chance of line honours, thereby becoming the first ever female winner.
Two more local men, Peter Crowther and Mervyn Wheatley, are also taking part. This is Peter’s eighth OSTAR and Mervyn’s third.
As momentum builds for the race Plymouth artist, Richard Allman, has been signed up by the Royal Western Yacht Club as the official race artist. He also covered the start of the RWYC Round Britain and Ireland race in 2006.
Richard will be working outdoors on the pontoons, capturing the boats and the sailors undertaking the last-minute preparations. These paintings will be available for purchase and anyone interested in a commission can contact Richard through his website www.richardallman.co.uk.
Richard commented: “Drawings and other artwork add another dimension to a big event like the OSTAR 2009. I find that people are fascinated to watch me at work, drawing in front of such a busy scene – it’s another way to involve people. I am thrilled to be working with the RWYC on this exciting race.”
David Southwood, Race Director of OSTAR 2009, commented: “We are very pleased to have had such a good response from around the world for the OSTAR. Some very exciting competitors are signed up, among which are great sailors of the present, and the future. Having Richard Allman on board is also a coup as his work is really spectacular and will help to highlight the race and its Corinthian roots.”