On course for fun race

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Indy Lifestyle Online
The prospect of racing round the world the 'wrong way' - against prevailing winds - with amateur crew members, some of whom have never sailed before, is a daunting challenge even for hardy sailors, writes Elaine Fogg.

Yet there is a waiting list of more than 200 people willing to pay pounds 18,000-plus apiece for a place on a competing yacht in the next Chay Blyth round the world yacht race, named the BT Global Challenge after sponsors British Telecom. Six steel challenge boats are part of a Parade of Sail fun race to Plymouth, which is a prelude to the main event which leaves Southampton in September 1996.

There will be 15 identical, 67ft yachts taking part in the 30,000-mile circumnavigation. International entries and experienced racing crews will also be in the race, which will take about 10 months.

The fleet will sail through the Bay of Biscay and the doldrums to Rio de Janeiro. After Cape Horn, the next port of call is Hobart, then Sydney, Cape Town and Boston before a sprint home across the north Atlantic.

(Photograph omitted)