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SB20 Class Head Out for Four Full-on Days at Top Dutch Regatta

13th May 2016
The SB20 class’s second European Grand Slam of the season kicks off today The SB20 class’s second European Grand Slam of the season kicks off today Photo: Sander van der Borgh

The SB20 class’s second European Grand Slam of the season kicks off today, Friday May 13, at the North Sea Regatta.The North Sea Regatta is the largest Dutch sailing event, attracting around 2,500 sailors annually to Scheveningen, close to The Hague.

This year 20 SB20s will be competing in their own class at the prestigious event, with a breezy forecast and big fleet combining to guarantee four days of exciting white-knuckle racing from May 13-16, 2016.

The Dutch Grand Slam has been added to the SB20 calendar due to the growing strength of the Dutch fleet. Last year one-design expert Hein Ruyten was appointed SB20 dealer for the region and has seen the class reinvigorated with increasing numbers and an active racing fleet.

Among the top local sailors competing at the event is Marco van Driel on ‘MXTC’ and local fleet captain Martijn Buitnehuis (‘Buitenhuis Advies’). Meanwhile the fleet has also attracted entrants from France, Germany, Ireland and Great Britain. British teams to watch include Adrian Peach on ‘Uber’, who won the Cowes Grand Slam last year, while fleet newcomer James Russell on ‘Blackstone Racing’ is also showing some strong form.

The forecast for the event is for strong breezes, with winds ranging from the high teens to mid 20s for the first three days, with a chance of gusts of over 25 knots on today’s opener. SportsboatWorld’s Jerry Hill commented: “If it is as windy as the forecast says it might be, then we could be in for some fun.

"Racing the SB20 in those conditions it’s all about keeping the boat tracking, the rig above the keel, and getting the gennaker up and down safely.”

The SB20 sailors should certainly enjoy some high octane downwind legs, with 12 races scheduled over four days.

Published in SB20

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SB20 (formerly Laser SB3) information

Designed by Tony Castro, the SB20 is a British-built strict one-design 6.15m keelboat conceived as a wide appeal, affordable, competitive sportsboat for teams of three or four sailors. It is also, arguably, the most successful sportsboat in the world with 800 owners competing regularly in a programme of exciting local, national and international events.

Originally known as the Laser SB3, the SB20 continues to deliver on its pioneering promise: a boat that is fun, fast and easy to sail by anyone of any age; the best value-for-money sportsboat in the market.

The Laser SB3 was designed by Castro and launched in 2002. In 2007 the Laser SB3 was awarded ISAF Recognised Status and the first World Championships were held in Ireland in 2008. In 2012, Tony Castro appointed a new builder, Sportsboat World. At this time, the Laser SB3 was renamed the SB20 and building was returned to the UK from Malaysia. The ethos of the class continues.

The boat is a strict one-design class, economic to buy and campaign, easy to sail with a simple deck layout and electric downwind performance delivered by the generous sail plan. The boat has a lifting keel, can easily be launched from a slipway and towed behind a family car.

Previous SB20 World Champions

2008 GBR: Geoff Carveth, Roger Gilbert, Roz Allen & Sarah Allan

Host National Yacht Club, Dun laoghaire, Ireland

2009 GBR: Craig Burlton, Stephen White, Adam Heeley

Host Clube Naval de Cascais, Cascais, Portugal

2010 GBR: Jerry Hill, Grant Rollerson, Joe Llewellyn

Host Circolo Vela Torbole, Lake Garda, Italy

2011 GBR: Geoff Carveth, Andy Ramus, Ian Mills & Emma Clarke

Host Royal Torbay Yacht Club, Torquay, UK

2012 GBR: Geoff Carveth, Lesley Dhonau, Roger Hudson & Asenathi Jim

Host Hamilton Island Yacht Club, Queensland, Australia

2013 GRB: Craig Burlton, Stephen White, Adam Heley Host COYCH Club, Hyeres, France

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