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Great Race Thread.
« on: February 04, 2021, 08:59:32 AM »
International interest builds for Great Race 2021
JELANI BECKLES  (T&T NEWSDAY).


THE 2021 TT Great Race is already getting international interest as three teams from the US have shown their willingness to compete in the annual powerboat race.

“The only thing I could tell you is that we have three boats (from the US) already requesting to come for the Great Race on August 21, but again that all depends on covid and our borders,” said Roger Bell, director of public relations and international racing at the TT Powerboat Association (TTPBA). The TT borders have been closed since March last year as people must be granted an exemption to enter.

The TT Great Race has had international competitors before, but the event has never had three foreign entrants in one year. “They have requested to come, but we have written to them and said we would love to have them but at the current time our borders are closed until further notice, but we will keep them abreast.”

Prior to the 2021 TT Great Race on August 21 multiple regattas will be held over the coming months to get the boats and participants prepared for the anticipated event in August.

Motul Monster, four-time winners of the Great Race, will make a return to competitive action this year and will make an appearance in the first 2021 TTPBA Regatta in the Gulf of Paria, from 12.30 pm, on Sunday.

Speaking about the return of Monster, Bell said, “What we are excited about is the return of Motul Monster in the 130 mph class...Monster has won the Great Race four times and the last time being during the 50th running of the Great Race in 2018 where they ascertained the UIM (Union Internationale Motonautique) record to Tobago which they still hold.”

The UIM is the international governing body of powerboating.

On Sunday, Monster will compete in the 130 mile per hour (mph) class against Mr Solo Too. Close to 20 teams are expected to participate including boats in the 60 mph, 70 mph, 80 mph, 95 mph and 120 mph classes. Stampede will compete in the 120 mph class and Global Warmer will line up in the 95 mph category.

Sunday’s regatta will be the first of the 2021 National Championship season. “We expect to have five of those (regattas), but due to covid and all the protocols, the regatta will be held out in the Gulf (of Paria). It will be not at any base like Yacht Club per se. The covid protocols will be in effect. There will be no rafting up, no tying up on any jetties. The race boats will have one service boat and all protocols concerning the amount of people allowed on vessels and face masks will be in effect.”

The 2020 Great Race was postponed because of covid19 as it was held on September 26 instead of August when it is normally held.

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