RORC De Guingand Bowl Offshore Race

Other Events

Other Events

RORC De Guingand Bowl Offshore Race

Girls For Sail Verdict

The RORC De Guingand Bowl is a race from Cowes, Isle of Wight to Cherbourg via marks. The race is around 75 miles to Cherbourg and if you include the delivery back to Cowes makes a round trip of around 150nm. Great for that log book !

What the Girls Had to Say

"I've really enjoyed sailing with GFS and have learnt so much - I never would have had the confidence to give racing a go if Sophie hadn't suggested it on the day skipper week, and now I think I'm hooked!" Nia, 2015

Starts: 19:30 Friday, Shepards Wharf Marina, Cowes

Finishes: TBC tide and weather dependant!


About the event

If you haven't experienced offshore racing before then this is a great way to start!  Most of us start out racing in inshore events and the transition to full blown offshore events can sometimes be a tough one, but the De Guingand Bowl Race is a nice compromise. This race is a good way to test the waters and ease yourself gently into the challenges and rewards of offshore racing. The night-time race start only adds to the sense of drama and excitement at the beginning of the 60 mile dash to France.

This race takes you out of the Solent and across to Cherbourg. While this guarantees you plenty of hard-fought racing, respite is near at hand, and Cherbourg is a fine stopover at the end of a hard race and a great place to enjoy a lovely few hours stopover (weather permitting) Make sure you bring your passport!  

What to expect/Itinerary

Offshore races are exciting especially at the start and success relies on the team working together and creating a watch system if you are unable to stay awake for the estimated sailing time, which is likely. This, and sailing at night are the main challenges for the skipper and crew as well as maintaining that all important concentration. Expect to be active for periods and involved in all aspects of looking after fellow crew onboard.

Last year we had a hard fought race which required more than a little skill to succeed in. As we raced across the Channel we enjoyed a close fought race with our rivals all the while keeping a weather eye on the tides and the tricky Traffic Separation Scheme along the way.  Even without separation schemes to keep you busy, there are plenty of challenges to keep your skills well honed, not least a race through the night which will give any novice to offshore racing a great taste of the thrill and spills of this exciting sport. 

We like to think we will go ashore at the end of a race although we cannot always promise this if the weather forecast doesn’t allow. We do have to get back to Cowes and this may mean we turn around straight away. The skipper will make this decision based on weather forecast and crew capability as safety of the yacht and crew is the priority.


The boat

We mostly coach on yachts of between 37 and 41ft. Our yachts have been specifically chosen as they are easy to handle, great for learning! There is no denying us girls sometimes don't have the physical strength of the boys but with our technical ability and a well-chosen yacht we can do just as well. You will usually find yourself aboard an Élan 37, Jeanneau 37 or a Beneteau 40.7. All of your time will be spent living as crew-mates on your yacht.  Most of the yachts are 9/10 berth yachts with 3 cabins and a saloon so the boats will normally have 2 persons in each cabin i.e. 6 - this is always the case for an RYA course, MAX 6 persons on-board. On some events e.g. races we use the saloon which can sleep an additional 2-4 person. 


What's included?

  • Fully coded yacht with safety equipment
  • Fully qualified RYA skipper
  • All safety equipment
  • Accommodation on board*
  • Diesel, water, electricity
  • FUN, FUN, FUN!!

What's excluded?

  • Transport to and from meeting points
  • Flights
  • Alcoholic drinks and evening meals
  • Mooring fees
  • Departure taxes/customs entries per person
  • Any clothing
  • *Accommodation upgrades where available

Pre Course Requirements

None! Any sailing experience is of benefit and previous night sailing is a great advantage for all concerned. Good awareness of sea sickness is advisable before a channel crossing – if you do suspect you may get sick it is advisable to read our info about precautions in our joining instructions and start taking tablets before you step onboard.

Whilst it is not a requirement, we recommend that you ensure that you have an up-to-date RYA Sea Survival and ISAF Offshore Safety certificate, before taking part in these races. 

You can undertake a DAY SAIL or a weekend or even a course to be ready for this adventure but it's not essential.

Why choose Girls for Sail?

  • First of all we want to give you some freedom, we want you to feel absolutely able to do anything onboard, so we will greet you, make you feel welcome, confident and safe, and of course you won't have anyone rushing you! You can learn at your own pace with our skippers and feel the benefit of this in your handling of our yacht!
  • We pride ourselves on our levels of tuition.  There's no such thing as a 'silly' question!  There's no shouting onboard and as it's also your holiday, we want you to have fun and go home relaxed and satisfied with your time here! Not to mention you get to meet new lifelong friends! 

Our values are simple: Encourage, Support, Challenge and Respect!

How to book?

Click on the link above to view available dates - or if you have any questions please feel free to get in touch with us!

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+44(0)1983 28 28 67

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