The National 18 class will be the first to hold a major international dinghy championship at Britain's 2012 Olympic Sailing Centre

The National 18 class will be the first to hold a major international dinghy championship at Britain’s 2012 Olympic Sailing Centre. The championship, with entries from England, Scotland, Eire and the Isle of Man, will be held at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy (WPNSA) from Sunday 31 July to Friday 5 August 2005.

The event is being organised jointly by Tamesis Club, founded in 1885 on the River Thames at Teddington, Middlesex, and the Portland Castle Sailing Club. The championship rotates between Cork, Findhorn (near Inverness), Port St Mary in the Isle of Man and various venues in England, and attracts over 30 boats with more than 100 people.

There will be two races each day, with the first start at 1100, and a single practice race on Sunday 31 July at 1400.

The racing will be organised to give each of the three types of National 18 an opportunity to share in the prizes, with the classic wood boats and older glass fibre ones starting together and sailing the same course, but the classics will sail about two thirds the distance.

Jeremy Vines, Chairman of the Tamesis Club Organising Committee, said: “We are privileged to have the use of the 2012 Olympic sailing centre for our championship and hope our activities will help the WPNSA test the already excellent facilities at Osprey Quay in a way that will help to enhance their development for the Olympics Being a river-based club, Tamesis has to seek an open water venue when it is our turn to organise the championship, as we did four years ago in St Mawes in Cornwall. Having taken part in the inaugural regatta at Portland in June, when the centre was formally opened by HRH the Princess Royal, President of the Royal Yachting Association, I know what a splendid sailing location it is.”

Phil Gollop, Director of Operations, WPNSA, said: “We are delighted to welcome the National 18 class to the Sailing Academy. It’s fantastic to be hosting a National Championship for one of the more traditional classes of well-established dinghies. We hope that the conditions of Portland Harbour and Weymouth Bay.