Cork Harbour got a tast of the next June’s Venture Cup - the world’s longest, toughest and most prestigious powerboat race when two of the entries took a spin around the second largest natural harbour in the world.
As Afloat.ie reported at the weekend, running at speeds in excess of over 160 kilometres per hour, Ireland’s ‘Team Hibernia’ and England’s ‘Vector Martini’ drew quite a crowd of excited spectators as they tested the 32 kilometre course which will be covered seven times by 25 international raceboats on Sunday June 12th next.
“This was a necessary test” reported Venture Cup Racing Director, Peter Dredge. “These boats usually only race very long-distances offshore, but Cork Harbour is particularly special so we’ve been working hard with the Port of Cork to deliver a really great in-harbour course for the first leg of the race”. Following on from the opening leg in Cork, the fleet will then charge along the Wild Atlantic Way with stops in Dingle, Galway, Killybegs and Belfast, before charging into Dublin for the closing weekend on Saturday 18th of June.
Aside from the spectacle of world-class racing in Cork Harbour, the people of Cork can also look forward to a great free festival in the centre of the city, as the fleet will be moored on Custom House Quay and surrounded by a free public festival right across the opening weekend - something which Ann Doherty, Chief Executive of Cork City Council is greatly looking forward to “The Venture Cup is one of the world's most prestigious marine events and we are delighted that the organisers have chosen Cork as its start point in Ireland. We're especially pleased that Corkonians and visitors to our city will get an opportunity to get up close and personal with these magnificent boats along while enjoying the party atmosphere at the quayside event next June. We're very confident that the event will attract crowds in excess of those who attended the Tall Ships event in 1992.”
The Mayor of County Cork is equally full of anticipation for next June’s event “Cork County Council is delighted to work with the organisers of the Venture World Cup to bring the race to Cork Harbour and West Cork’s Haven Coast in 2016. We view this event as an important milestone in demonstrating the tourism potential of Cork Harbour and the spectacular Cork coastline.”