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Easier and cheaper to sail around Gotland

2016-11-10 - Kappsegling, ÅF Offshore Race, KSSS This summer the Swedish Royal Yacht Club will celebrate the 80th anniversary of their classic race around Gotland in the ÅF Offshore Race. To make it much easier and cheaper to take part the organizers will remove the rule that require a life rafts and change the rules for reef in the mainsail. Some other minor rules will also be changed.

- We simply want to make it easier and cheaper to participate without making it unsafe. We believe and hope that this change will attract more sailors with smaller boats, ie ordinary family sailors, says race director Magnus Woxén and continues:

- There is a big difference between investing in a life raft for at least 10 000 than if it may cost SEK 2 000 - 3 000 in investments and preparations. And the rule that says everybody must be able to take a reef of the mainsail at least 40 percent is also a bit exaggerated, given the weather system that normally prevails around Gotland.

Is there no security risk by removing the life raft requirement?

- Safety is a priority for the Royal Swedish Yacht Club and we still recommend everybody to have a life raft. But given that the boats have transponders and the relative proximity to other boats, and to shore, so we have removed the requirement.

- And we do not believe that those who rae thinking of sailing ÅF Offshore Race will need to buy a new mainsail, just because they have one that does not have the "right" reefs, says, Woxén.