It has been confirmed that this year's Cong-Galway sailing race will go ahead on Saturday August 22.
The race which is reputed to be Europe's oldest and longest sailing race, has been providing a unique and memorable challenge for sailors since its inception in 1882.
While the outbreak of World War I and the Spanish Flu resulted in cancellations in years gone by, the organising clubs' decision to defer this year's event to August will enable it to proceed.
Last year's event attracted a large fleet from all across the west of Ireland and the organising clubs are hoping that the easing of travel restrictions will enable boats from across the country to participate this year.
There is a heightened sense of enthusiasm this year with the cancellation of so many other sporting events and the success of last year's race.
The race has become something of a bucket-list event where older sailors can infuse the next generation with the traditions and skills from years gone by. Indeed, first across the line and overall winners last year were the father and son combination of Yannick and Seán Lemonnier.
The course follows the old steamer route from Lisloughrey pier near Cong to the city of Galway, which is about 30 nautical miles in total. The race starts in the picturesque shadow of Ashford Castle at the northern end of the lake.
It is raced as two legs. The first leg finishes at Kilbeg, where competitors can pause for lunch and refreshments. The second leg is via a narrower channel in the lower lake and on to the river with the finish line at Corrib Village.
To finish up, there is the crowd-pleasing sight of the boats toppling over to get the masts under the Quincentennial Bridge before arriving at the Corrib Rowing and Yachting Club for the presentation of the historic trophy. The guiding principles of regulatory compliance, risk assessment, self-help, and personal responsibility will apply for all participants.
The guiding principles of regulatory compliance, risk assessment, self-help, and personal responsibility will apply for all participants.
Details of how to register online and the notice of race and sailing instructions can be found via https://www.gbsc.ie/post/who-will-be-king-or-queen-of-cong-2020 or https://galwaycitysailingclub.com/cong-to-galway-sailing-race-2020/ or by e-mailing [email protected].