A 21 year old Army Reservist from High Wycombe will be a crew member on a yacht participating in the 2017 Rolex Fastnet Race.
Private Harry Davis is be one of seven Reservists participating in the race which starts on Sunday 6th August 2017.
The Reservists are from 162 Regiment Royal Logistics Corps (RLC) based in Nottingham and 165 Port and Maritime Regiment RLC based in Plymouth. They have come together in what will be the first all-Reservist team to compete in the race.
Harry, who has been a Reservist for less than six months, works as a Bar Manager and currently serves with 871 Squadron 162 Regiment RLC.
Harry said, ‘My family are really excited for me, although my mum is a little apprehensive, so I have promised to keep in touch. And what is really good is that we can use the training we receive in the Reserves, where we do a lot of things in a short period of time, into this so we can learn to get along and work as a team really quickly.
We will need good cohesion in what are going to be quite cramped and hostile conditions.‘
Harry will be sailing on ‘The Osprey’, a Comfortina 42 yacht which was originally owned by British Forces Germany then moved to Gosport and has been refitted specifically for the Fastnet race. Sponsors Agility Defense & Government Services, who deliver logistical support to the Ministry of Defence, have also provided funding to assist the team in their endeavour.
The Reservists will complete a week’s training prior to the race to ensure they can work efficiently together in what are likely to be very challenging circumstances.
They will be put through their paces on sailing, radios, meteorology, rescue at sea and even dressing and cooking on board. Each team member will then work in rotations of four hours during the race in an environment designed to test sailing skills, technique and speed.
The Fastnet Race, which starts off in Cowes on the Isle of Wight, takes place every two years over a course of 608 nautical miles (1126 km). The Fastnet lighthouse was the last sight of Ireland for emigrants sailing to America and first shone its light on New Year’s Day 1854.
The race dates back to 1925 with the very first winner completing the course in 147 hours however today the course can be completed in under 43 hours.
This year 390 yachts will compete over a number of classes. At least 27 countries are represented with Great Britain making up 58% of the 2017 fleet. The remaining boats come from France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Ireland, Australia, the United States of America, Korea, Japan, China, Russia, Turkey, Oman and Israel.