SSE Renewables Round Ireland Race organiser Kyran O'Grady led a Wicklow Sailing Club delegation to France in December to address the Union Nationale pour la Course au Large (UNCL) prizegiving in Paris.
Keen to encourage French and international numbers for this year's biennial Irish offshore classic in June, the Wicklow Commodore also revealed a special draw prize for foreign boats coming to Ireland this summer.
Using impressive visuals from from the race, O'Grady took the opportunity to point out the unique features of the 700-miler that celebrates its 21st edition in 2020. "Not alone do you go around the Fastnet Rock but also around Ireland with for tidal gates, the Open Atlantic Ocean on the west coast before coming very close to Scotland and a finish further down the Irish Sea and a warm welcome back in Wicklow," he told the important French gathering.
In co-operation with the British offshore racing club, RORC, UNCL is responsible for IRC, the principal international handicap system for yacht racing.
O'Grady also announced that French boats that enter both the Round Ireland Race in June and July's Cork Week Regatta in Cork Harbour will be entered into a draw for a case of Irish whiskey from Irish Distillers.
Entry in the 2020 Round Ireland Race is expected to open on January 20th with the race organisers already announcing the leaderboard for the Volvo Car Prize and a new trophy for the oldest boat in the race.