The UK’s best young driving talent are revving their engines and practising their skills as they prepare to compete for the 2016 Honda RYA Youth RIB Championship title at the Southampton Boat Show on Sunday 25 September.
The 2016 competition sponsored by Honda and Highfield, blasted off in Northern Ireland in May with thousands of young power boaters competing at area finals across the UK in RIBS which can hit speeds of 25mph. The last of the 13 area finals took place at Parkstone Yacht Club this weekend.
In the North West the girls from Lancashire Powerboat Racing Club are leading the way with Isabelle Ashton taking the top spot in the 8-12 age group and Lauren McGlashan for the 13-16 age group.
Lauren (13) posted the fastest time of the competition so far and has qualified for the national final twice before. “I’m so excited about going to Southampton again. Hopefully it will be third time lucky. I’m going to practise really hard before the final so I can do well.”
In total, 27 competitors have qualified for the national final and will be competing in two age groups 8-12 and 13-16. Each finalist will have two runs of the course which includes a slalam, stopping and reversing round a mark and a blast to the finish line. The driver with the fastest time in each age group will be crown national champion.
Now in its 15th year, the competition sees finalists battling it out on the water to claim some incredible prizes. The national winner in the of the 8-12 age category gets a Honwave T40 RIB with a Honda BF20 engine for their club and the winner of 13-16 age group wins a Highfield 460 RIB with a Honda BF50 engine.
The newly-crowned National Champions will then challenge the 2015 winning clubs for the Champion of Champions title.
Andrew Norton, RYA Powerboat Projects Manager said: “The Honda RYA Youth RIB Championship is celebrating its 15th Anniversary this year and it’s fantastic to see the competition continuing to thrive. We’ve seen some exceptional times being posted at the area finals so we expect to see some really exciting racing, the 2016 title could belong to anyone!”
The national final will begin at 9.30am, with a prize giving to be held at 4.00pm on the Honda stand (stand CO66).
The Honda RYA Youth RIB Championship is Britain’s leading programme introducing kids to powerboats and training them to be safe, proficient drivers and excellent boat handlers.
For more information visit www.rya.org.uk/go/hondayouthrib