The PowerBar Three Peaks Yacht Race

  • UK (GBR)

The FOO Crew Race for Young People with Epilepsy

News Release / 17.06.2009See All Event Posts Follow Event
The Foo Crew
The Foo Crew
A team made up of sailors and runners will be facing the extreme challenge of completing the PowerBar 3 Peaks Yacht Race in June this year.

All the money raised will go to the National Centre for Young People with Epilepsy and the team are aiming to raise a grand total of £10,000 for this extremely worthy cause. (Check out the charity’s website at http://www.ncype.org.uk/.

The team visited the centre last February to have a look around at the amazing facilities they have there and help raise awareness for our cause. The Centre kindly produced banners for the yacht which will be proudly displayed before, during and after the race together with T-shirts for the team.

The sailing team will consist of co-skippers Eric Zon and Tim Barr-Smith ably assisted by crew member Andy Barker and will be competing with their UFO 34 yacht, the Foo Fighter, based at Rye Harbour, East Sussex. The runners, Andi Rivett (this name may be familiar to ultra-distance followers as the guy who ran from John O’Groats to Lands End in a record-breaking 9 days and 2 hours) and Paul Digman (from Nottingham) will be on board and poised to set off at each port to conquer the 3 highest points of Wales (Snowdon), England (Scafell Pike) and Scotland (Ben Nevis) in the fastest possible time to help the team to victory.

Competitors in the past have had to demonstrate the utmost endurance and skill in both the sailing and running to claim the top prize, so it really is a comprehensive team effort. Last year only 17 out of the 25 starting teams got to the finish line, so just finishing is an achievement in itself.

The race itself involves 389 miles of difficult coast sailing (on the most direct route please Tim and Eric!!), 72 miles of gruelling running and 18 miles of cycling along the Western Coast of the UK. The race starts from Barmouth in Wales where the team will sail to Caernarfon at which point the runners set off up Mount Snowdon and then back to the boat via several checkpoints. Then the team set off again sailing to Whitehaven where the runners get on their bikes to the foot of Scafell Pike, the next peak. Without pausing for breath, the team set off to sail up to deposit the runners at Fort William for the final push up Ben Nevis and back to the yacht to finish.

A fully kitted-out road team (Ben, Kim and Jan) will be on hand to assist with the team’s general needs but race rules preclude any change of team line-up.

Training has begun in earnest and Tim will be sailing off on the Foo Fighter along the South Coast and round to Padstow in a month or so, ensuring the yacht arrives in ‘peak’ condition for the start of the race on 20th June.

The hard work will all be worthwhile for the Foo Crew if they succeed in raising £10,000 for the NCYPE.

Eric's five-year-old son, Hamish, was diagnosed with epilepsy eighteen months ago and the charity has been a constant support ever since. “It has been an ongoing challenge to find the right cocktail of drugs to control Hamish’s epilepsy, one which is
still not resolved. The National Centre for Young People with Epilepsy is a great source of support and advice for parents and children alike.�

The NCYPE is the UK’s major provider of specialist services for children and young people with complex epilepsy and other neurological conditions. It provides day and residential education places for students aged 5- 25, a fully staffed health centre, and a range of epilepsy diagnostic, assessment, rehabilitation and outreach services.

You can sponsor the Foo Crew by visiting the online fundraising page on www.justgiving.com/foofighter3peaks

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