Streamline Shipping Group sponsors local Shetland sailor

Streamline Shipping Group is pleased to announce that it will be the main sponsor of Shetland businessman Leslie Irvine’s attempt for victory in this prestigious sailing event.

Streamline will be providing sponsorship in the form of logistics services and support as well as a financial contribution towards key equipment for this challenge.

The race was started by the Royal Western in 1966 and is one of the International classics of short-handed sailing, and over the years has attracted all of the great names. The course is clockwise around all of Great Britain & Ireland, and there are compulsory stops of 48 hours at Kinsale, Barra, Lerwick and Lowestoft. It is always a terrific test of endurance and seamanship, which is not for the faint hearted.

Leslie, along with co-skipper Andrew Wood, will be sailing a brand new VQ32 yacht aptly named ‘Streamline’ for this race, which starts from Plymouth on the 6th June 2010. Streamline’s Operations Director, Phil Bremner, said “between them, Leslie and Andrew have the skills and experience to do well and we wish them every success with the race”.

Leslie took part in the last race in 2006 along with Dick Koopmans, the designer of the VQ32, and they finished first in Class 3. During the race they spoke about doing the race again and also the design of a new boat. Three of these yachts have now been built and they hope to have them all at the start line next June.

Based in Penzance, Cornwall, Andrew Wood is a 36 year old professional skipper who has acquired a lot of experience over the past two decades. Andrew said “the Shetland Round Britain & Ireland race is of those ‘must do’ land mark races, made all the more significant to me as my father competed in two editions in the late 70’s, so it goes without saying that I’m really looking forward to the challenge of this tough regatta. Leslie and I first met when I pulled into Shetland on a return sail from Svalbard and we have been cruising and racing together ever since. Both of us originating from the extreme opposite ends of the British Isles, yet both with an unparallel passion for sailing makes for a great sense of balance onboard and I can’t wait for the off.

We are delighted to have Streamline Shipping Group as our main sponsor for this race, and we are working hard to ensure we can achieve the goal we have set ourselves. When you look at a map of the British Isles, it is approximately 2,000 miles to circumnavigate and we have to navigate ‘Streamline’ around twice, and then return back to Shetland, all in all around 4,000 nautical miles”.

Leslie and Andrew are raising money for Leukaemia Research, a charity that is close to both men. The two sailors will shortly have a website up and running charting progress so that any one interested in following will be able to log on and track their progress, donations can also be made to Leukaemia Research.

Picture: Andrew Wood (left) and Leslie Irvine (right)

For additional information please see:

Royal Western Yacht Club…. www.rwyc.org

Streamline Shipping Group …. www.streamlineshippinggroup.com

Lerwick Building Centre …… www.lerwickbuildingcentre.co.uk