With some of the event's most experienced crew on board, the Reflex 38 Lightening Reflex should be one to watch out for during next month's Helly Hansen Three Peaks Race
International runners, experienced sailors and winners from previous Helly Hansen Three Peaks Yacht Races will be on board Lightening Reflex (Reflex 38), making this entry a team to be reckoned with for the 2002 race which starts on Saturday 15 June from Barmouth in Wales.
Geoff West, owner and skipper of the yacht is without doubt aware of the challenge ahead. This will be the fourth time he has competed in the Helly Hansen Three Peaks Yacht Race. Geoff has sailed in this race since winning the small boat class in the Universal 500 race, a similar sailing/running competition based along the south coast of England. In 1999, Geoff picked up first prize after an extremely windy and hazardous Helly Hansen Three Peaks Yacht Race. Over the years his team has won all three sailing legs of the race, though not in the same year.
As well as the skipper, Geoff is the team’s substitute runner, which means he is training to ensure that he is able to compete at least one of the running legs. “This is a team race and we have to be ready for all eventualities. The runners are always willing to help with the sailing and we must ensure that they also have back up,” explains Geoff.
Finding the fastest route to the finish line is the job of the navigator Ken Fitzpatrick. Ken is also Pwllheli Harbour Master and experienced on this race having sailed with Richard Tudor on the winning boat in 1999, smashing the previous multihull race record. Dave Jones, past member of the Welsh Youth Sailing Squad and previous Sailor of the Year, joins Geoff and Ken to form the sailing side of the team.
Making running up mountains look as easy as a stroll in the park, British Tough Guy Champion Aled Rees, who is also Captain of Team Wales, Adventure Racing Team, and Adrian Bailey, Welsh International Runner and also a member of Team Wales are the runners for “Lightening Reflex”. Adrian competed in the 1999 Helly Hansen Three Peaks Yacht Race with the second fastest time, so his own personal challenge is on. For further information about the Three Peaks Yacht Race, contact the Race Secretary Lt Col Colin Walker, Tregarn, Barmouth, Gwynedd LL42 1DJ. Telephone 01341 280298 or Fax 01341 280442 or see the web site at www.threepeaksyachtrace.co.uk