Sail Training Info


Small Ships Races


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The ASTO Small Ships Races are a youth event open to any Sail Training vessels of which at least half the crew is under 25. Small Ships races are run under the rules of Tall Ships Races but with, as the name suggests, some smaller vessels involved (usually under 24 metres long, with up to 16 trainees on board).  The inaugural ASTO Small Ships Race from Weymouth to St. Malo in 2002 was deemed to be a tremendous success by all involved. Since then, host ports have included Ipswich, Delfzijl, Glasgow, Greenock, Belfast, Cowes, Torquay, St. Peter Port, London and Portland. Although these events are termed races, and there is certainly hot competition on the water, the main aim is to bring a range of Sail Training vessels together for their crews to compete, socialise and rise to the challenge of sailing these exciting ships.

ASTO now organises two types of race event: an annual 'round-the-cans' race, and about every 2 years a longer 'passage race' with at least two host ports and a longer stretch of offshore racing. 
There is no passage race planned for 2015 however ASTO are in talks for events for 2016 and 2017, details of which will be announced soon.
The 'round-the-cans' Small Ships Race happens on the first weekend in October every year out of Cowes. This short event is extremely popular in the Sail Training world, with 29 boats and 355 people taking part last year. 

Visit the links to the left for information about this year's events, how to take part and read archive race reports.

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