Three Peaks ahoy

PUBLISHED: 17:00 12 June 2009 | UPDATED: 11:09 10 June 2010

A SEA of daring Topsham folk are flocking to the deep blue waters ahead of starting separate, demanding, challenges. Twenty-three-year-old David Brooks, of Swains Court, embarked on a maiden voyage last Sunday as preparation before setting off on a 13,000

A SEA of daring Topsham folk are flocking to the deep blue waters ahead of starting separate, demanding, challenges.

Twenty-three-year-old David Brooks, of Swains Court, embarked on a maiden voyage last Sunday as preparation before setting off on a 13,000 mile rowing trip across the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans in December.

And, in a different but equally heroic challenge, Bill Ricketts and his family, of Newcourt Road, will take part in a three peaks yacht race next Saturday, June 20.

The 68-year-old and his crew will compete in the event which combines yachting, mountain running and cycling. Each team comprises three sailors and two runners.

The route, which starts in Barmouth on the Welsh coast, and ends at Fort William in Scotland, entails 389 miles of coastal sailing, 18 miles of cycling and 72 miles running.

Bill, reflecting on the reasons why he first started taking part in the challenge a number of years ago, joked: "We got roped into doing it.

"When I retired, my son Neil suggested it would be a quick way to get the boat up to Scotland so we could do some cruising around the islands. My family probably has about 10 years' collective experience of competing in the race.

"You can never fully prepare for it because you don't know what the weather is going to be like."

An amused Bill added: "We came in last position 12 months ago. I think Neil has aspirations to win it one day, which I think he could if he got a quicker boat.

"We all enjoy it - the spirit of the race is excellent." The cycle aspect of the challenge entails riding up and down Scafell Pike.

Kate Hattersley, of Topsham Sailing Club, who will also compete in the event but in a separate yacht, said both teams were hoping to raise money for injured military servicemen.

l For more information about the three peaks yacht race which celebrates its thirty third year since being formed, visit the following website at: www.topsham-sc.org.uk

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