Best of British Celebration with Olympic Sailors for Cowes Week

A full programme of exciting activities has been announced for a day of “Best of British” celebrations on Friday 17 August, one of the highlights at Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week with members of Team Volvo and Skandia Team GBR present at Cowes.

Following the announcement that members of Team Volvo and Skandia Team GBR will be present at Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week just one week after competing for Great Britain, Cowes Week Limited (CWL) have been working in partnership with title sponsors Aberdeen Asset Management, the Royal Yachting Association (RYA) and Team Volvo, to create a programme for the sailors that enables competitors and spectators to celebrate with the team at the world famous regatta.

For anyone that will be racing during the regatta, there is the chance to win a top British sailor to race with you on Friday 17 August, courtesy of Team Volvo. Through Facebook, three lucky teams can enter to “win” one of the three match racing girls each to join their boat for the day. Details are available via the official event website or enter by clicking the Cowes Week tab at

In addition, the team will make a special appearance at the Toe in the Water Heroes and Legends Crew Party that will be taking place at Shepards Wharf Marina on the evening of Friday 17 August.  Commenting on the news, Director of the charity, Tanya Brookfield said: “We are absolutely thrilled to be welcoming the Skandia Team GBR athletes to our Legends and Heroes Crew Party and I’m sure their arrival will ensure the party gets off to a great start; inspiring not just the Toe in the Water injured servicemen and women, but all sailors to really go for gold.” Visitors to the event will also have the opportunity to meet, and even enjoy a sailing lesson with, the team too. There is the chance to win a place to “Try Sailing” with members of the team, courtesy of the United Kingdom Sailing Academy (UKSA). More information on how to enter the competition can be found on the event website. 

Speaking about the visit to Cowes, Hannah Mills, member of Skandia Team GBR, Team Volvo and 470 World Champion said: “We are excited to be coming down to Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week. It will be a great chance to meet some of the public who have supported us through our campaigns”.

A stage appearance from the team will take place on Cowes Parade and at Cowes Yacht Haven, including autograph signings and photo opportunities, and members of the public will also be able to compete against the Team Volvo members of Skandia Team GBR on the new RYA Volvo Sail for Gold Game at the Volvo stand at Cowes Yacht Haven. 

Commenting on Team Volvo’s involvement with the day, Nick Dempsey, top British windsurfer and member of Team Volvo, said: “The RYA Volvo Sail for Gold Game is a great way to have a go at sailing or windsurfing, and it’s really addictive. I can beat Paul Goodison in a Laser now! We’d love to see people in Cowes trying to beat our time! ”.

Martin Gilbert, CEO of Aberdeen Asset Management, added: “We are delighted that the British sailors, who will have represented their country on the world’s biggest stage the previous week, will be joining us at Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week. It will provide a great thrill and sense of celebration for both competitors and spectators alike”.

Other highlights for the week include:

Family Day (Sunday 12 August)

Organisers are building on the success of last year’s first Family Day and a number of initiatives will be in place to help families get the most out of their time at the regatta. There will be a range of free and discounted activities.

Ladies Day (Thursday 16 August)

Celebrating women in sailing is the focus for Ladies Day, in recognition of the major successes of women in one of the few mainstream sports where men and women compete on equal terms. Ladies Day also celebrates and recognises sporting prowess across a wider range of sports and, working in partnership with the Women’s Sport and Fitness Foundation (WSFF) and the event’s sponsors, a number of female achievers across a range of sports will come together at the regatta in celebration of Ladies Day. Nominations are now being accepted via the official event website for the Ladies Day Trophy which recognises outstanding contribution, commitment, or achievement in sailing generally (not just at Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week).

“Best of British” Celebration Day (Friday 17 August)

Last month CWL was delighted to announce the involvement of Skandia Team GBR sailors at this year’s regatta. The team will be present on Friday 17 August, just one week after competing for Great Britain at the London 2012 Olympic Games. A full programme of activities for this day will shortly be announced. Friday 17 August will culminate in the traditional fireworks display, taking place at 21:30.

Donations can still be made via the official event website in order to safeguard future displays. 

Spectator Options

Visitors can enjoy watching much of the racing from the shore in Cowes. Princes Green and The Parade are great places to view the action, and organisers are working towards a programme of close-to-shore exhibition racing during the Week which will be announced nearer to the event. For those who would like to get afloat, bookings are open for the event spectator boat service which provides close views of the racing on hour-long round trips. Book-up via the official event website or in person at the entrance to Trinity Landing during the event. Tickets are £5 for children up to 16 years old and £10 for adults. Special discounted family tickets are also available. An exhilarating ride aboard a high speed Rigid Inflatable Powerboat is an option for the more adventurous, available from Ondeck through their ‘Rock up and RIB’ programme. To book, call 01983 284300 or email [email protected]. You can also book online at:  

This year, Elite Helicopters are also offering the chance to take to the skies for a pleasure flight with a range of helicopter flight options throughout the regatta. Visitors will be able to enjoy Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week from the air!

Unfortunately there will be no Red Arrows display at this year’s event; they will be out of the country for the duration of the regatta. However organisers are working to secure several aerial displays during the week and details will be published as soon as they are available.

Children’s Activities

For those attending the regatta and looking for activities to keep the children entertained, the UKSA offer a range of fun day activities throughout the event. For just £49 per person for eight to sixteen year-olds a choice of exciting watersports including sailing, team building games, team challenges and a whole host of fun, instructor-led activities will be provided. Places are limited, so early booking is recommended.

For further information regarding children’s day sailing courses, contact Alix Berry (01983 203034) or Morgan Strange (01983 203001) at the UKSA. 

Cowes Primary School is also providing day care facilities for four to eleven year-olds with options for just a morning or afternoon, or the whole day throughout the event. For further information, contact Julie Durno, Club Manager on 07511 709744.

Author: Isle of Wight Beacon

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