City firms are set to battle it out on the water in the 2007 BMW City Challenge, the popular Docklands-based summer yacht racing series, which takes place from May-September. Following the success of the 2006 event, title sponsor, BMW has agreed to add a fifth series, allowing more companies the chance to take to the water and defend their hard-fought city reputations.
Staged in the Royal Victoria Dock, the event attracts leading institutions from throughout the capital including Citigroup, KPMG, Allen & Overy, Morgan Stanley, Ernst & Young, Accenture and Deutsche Bank. A total of forty teams will now compete during the summer evenings for the prestigious title and a chance to win a BMW driving experience at the world famous Nürburgring race-circuit in Germany.
Jointly-organised by the Royal Thames Yacht Club and Berkeley Marine, crews of up to five sailors race in a series of fleet races spread over five evenings that take place every fortnight, with five separate heats lasting throughout the summer. Beginning at 6.30pm, crews compete in identical Beneteau First Class 8s, which are designed for yachting enthusiasts of all abilities, and attracting beginners to take part.
Last year’s inaugural BMW City Challenge was won by law firm ’A & Eau’ - Allen & Overy LLP, skippered by husband and wife duo, Graham and Julia Bailey (nee Salt). As well as lifting the trophy, the crew also won a VIP trip to watch the BMW ORACLE Racing America’s Cup yacht compete in Valencia, from which they returned last week.
Julia Salt, Partner at Allen & Overy LLP and 2006 winning skipper commented: "We thoroughly enjoyed the summer sailing series last year - to leave the office after a hard day and get out on the water was so liberating. We considered that previous winners Citibank would be the team to beat but strong competition emerged from several of the other financial firms and so we were delighted to prevail in a nail-biting final series. Watching the America’s Cup teams in Valencia was inspiring stuff and we’ll definitely be pushing hard to try and win again!"
Heat One of the 2007 BMW City Challenge begins on 1 May. The final, involving the winners and runners-up in each heat, will be held on Saturday, 29 September.
Heat 1 alternate Tuesdays – 1st May to 26th June 2007
Heat 2 alternate Thursdays – 3rd May to 28th June 2007
Heat 3 alternate Tuesdays – 8h May to 3rd July 2007
Heat 4 alternate Thursdays – 10th May to 5h July 2007
Heat 5 alternate Wednesdays – 11th July – 5th September 2007
Final – Saturday 8th September 2007.
There are five regattas in each Heat, and up to three races in each evening regatta. The top boat from each Heat goes through to the final; the second boat in each Heat goes through to the semi-final.
This years Prize
This years prize is a fantastic BMW driving experience at the world famous Nürburgring race-circuit in Germany.