The quaysides are already crowded with spectators as the fleet prepares to leave Antwerp. Vessels from the inner harbour need to make their way through the locks and bridges, so there will be ship movements all day as they all gather together in the River Schelde for the Parade of Sail at 1600hrs local time, where they will salute. The salute will be taken as the ships pass the memorial to fallen sea men at the Port House.
Pictured are Raphael Paillart, Alasdair MacPhail and their mentor, Angelique van Dyk who will be sailing on Wylde Swan, (Netherlands), the newest ship in the fleet who will be racing for the very first time. The trainees are part of the European Union International Exchange Programme and Youth in Action Netherlands.
After the Parade of Sail, where traditionally the ships show their appreciation of the City of Antwerp, the fleet will make its way out to the starting area, approximately 15 miles NW of Zeebrugge. The race start is scheduled for 1400hrs GMT/UTC and reports will follow here twice daily.
To see more images from The Tall Ships Races, click here
The Tall Ships Races is presented by Szczecin and organised by Sail Training International.