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    First Published: September 2003
       This is an OutUK Archive Item and so some of the links and information may be out of date.
A British crew have once again triumphed in a prestigious race beating rival gay and lesbian crews from around the world.

The winners were all members of the Gay UK Sailing Team (GUST), which as OutUK's Mike Gray reports, provides a supportive but challenging environment where gay and lesbian sailing enthusiasts can enjoy the sport, improve their skills and compete against crews from the UK and the rest of the world.

The event was organised by the Island Sailing Club who provided competitors with the opportunity to sail their fleet of Sonar yachts, pictured right.

The winning crew of Boatox. Boatox used their home advantage to win last weekend's (30th August) 3rd annual Euro Gay Cup by one point from team Gust Do It, the winners in 2002. This is the second year running that a team from members of the Gay UK Sailing Team have won the event, although this year the wining crew was aided by a member of the Australian team who won the gold medal at the 2002 Gay Games in Sydney.
The regatta was held at the home of British yachting, Cowes on the Isle of Wight, and attracted 32 competitors from the UK, Germany, France, Switzerland and Australia. The event was hosted by the Island Sailing Club who organised the racing and their fleet of matched Sonar keelboats provided the competitors with a unique opportunity to enjoy Solent racing.
GUST President Alex Dietz. "We had a fantastic weekend" said Alex Diez, President of GUST. "The Island Sailing Club was very welcoming and their organisation was superb which enabled us to have some excellent racing." Races used Olympic-style windward-leeward courses in spinnaker and non-spinnaker divisions and variable Force 2-3 winds made awareness of the Solent tides paramount.
"We really enjoyed the weekend in Cowes" said Willem Ann Hoekstra from the Netherlands. "It was a great opportunity to meet and compete with gay sailors from around the world and visit the home of yachting in the UK with so many boats. The competition was intense but friendly and we found it challenging to get used to the strong Solent tides which we donít experience at home".

The Euro Gay Cup is part of a trio of international gay sailing events in Europe, the USA and Australia endorsed by the international gay sailing organisation, GLORY (Gay and Lesbian Organisation for Racing and Yachting) which represents over 2000 members of existing gay sailing organisations worldwide. The next Euro Gay Cup is scheduled to take place in France in late summer 2004.

Gay UK Sailing Team

 

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