As Hartlepool says farewell to The Tall Ships Races 2010 when it finishes with the Parade of Sail on Tuesday 10 August, a new event will start on Wednesday 11 August.
The North Sea Tall Ships Regatta will start at 1400 hrs local on Wednesday, some five miles off the coast of Hartlepool. A total of 34 vessels currently in Hartlepool will be taking part in the race which will differ from usual Tall Ships Races. The aim of this event is for the vessels to cover the maximum distance in the time allowed (120 hours), rather than being first across the finish line.
Captains will be free to choose their own route to sail. There are some 30-40 waypoints from which the captains may choose when planning their route. Navigators and Captains need to select waypoints that suit their own vessels in the forecast weather conditions. This will be a challenging race to sail and also an exciting one to track for those people following the ships' progress.
After finishing the race the vessels will head to Ijmuiden in the Netherlands where they will gather prior to taking part in the Sail In down the canal to Sail Amsterdam, a large five day festival full of music, culture and nautical riches. For further information on Sail Amsterdam click here
The North Sea Tall Ships Regatta is organised by Sail Training International.