To finish first, first you have to finish. That just about summed up the outcome of the first Multispark Challenge offshore race organised by UKOPRA that was staged in Bournemouth Bay yesterday Saturday 8th September won by a newcomer Motivated Canvey Island.

Only eight teams entered the multi-lap 40 nm course, and prior to the race it appeared the overall winner would be an easy prediction to make from Richard Carr’s Fortitude Cougar marathon boat topping the entry list ahead of Ole Flintoff’s Warpath, both with engines over 1000hp, and a newcomer in N class Motivated Canvey Island, a Pantera powered by Mercruiser. After three of the five laps, these three boats were heading the charge. However, that is where the order changed dramatically when Fortitude and Warpath both fell out of the race having succumbed to technical problems.


Whoever was throttling the Pantera appeared to leave the ‘gas full on’ as it charged along at the front to take full marks in a time of just over 1 hour 4 minutes, at an average speed of 44.45mph, a great result for Paul Buckner and Stuart Unwin.
It was the Class 3 brigade which made up the rest of the fleet with the exception of Thomas and Brian Pelham in their Revenger The Beaver Returns. They probably would have taken third place but missed a turn buoy which demoted them to fifth place.

Vince Berridge in  Aquarius filled 2nd overall ahead of the sponsor’s outfit Multispark with Dave Sheldon and Chris Bailey. The surprise outfit in the fleet was the veteran  Class 3  aluminium Jupiter which led overall for a lap. This craft built by the Lucas brothers almost three decades ago still handles rough water as if it was specifically designed for it, and Nick Crouch and Dennis Clemsen know how to get the best out of the elder statesman.
Although the UKOPRA offshore season is now over OCRDA still have one more race in their series to complete the UK offshore season in Lowestoft later this month.
1st – Motivated Canvey Island – Paul Buckner/Stuart Unwin – 1hr 4mins 56secs
2nd – Aquarius – Vincent Berridge/Dommo Lewis – 1hr 17mins 34secs
3rd – Multispark Race Products – Dave Sheldon/Chris Bailey – 1hr 24mins 39secs
4th – Jupiter – Dennis Clemsen/Nick Crouch
5th – The Beaver Returns – Thomas & Brian Pelham
6th – Fortitude Cougar – Richard Carr/Mark Pasco/James Sinclair
7th – Don’t Know – Peter Clarke/Richard Comben
8th – Warpath – Glen Chidzoy/Ole Finholt/Gordon Compton
Photos: John Cordial