South Yorkshire club sails into record books

Pennine Sailing Club take part in Bart's Bash
Pennine Sailing Club take part in Bart's Bash
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More than 70 South Yorkshire sailors have become world record holders after taking part in the biggest ever global sailing race.

Members of the Pennine Sailing Club were among more than 18,000 people in 68 countries to take part in the Bart’s Bash event, in memory of Olympic sailor Andrew Simpson, who died last year.

It has now been confirmed by organisers that the threshold of 2,500 boats sailing in regattas involving at least 25 people has been reached - setting a new Guinness World Record.

A total of 77 people took part in the Pennine Sailing Club event at Winscar Reservoir, as 59 boats took to the water on Sunday.

Results for 3,600 boats have been processed so far - with more than 80 per cent of the results still to come in.

The event has raised more than £200,000 for charity, with about £450 raised by the Pennine Sailing Club event alone.

Colin Dengate, from the club, which is based at the reservoir near Penistone, said: “It was an extremely successful day. It was absolutely brilliant to take part in.”

Richard Percy, chief executive of the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation, said: “The event has proved a huge success and we are delighted to announce that, subject to ratification, we have set the new Guinness World Record.

“And we have done it in style, with 82 per cent of the results still to be processed.

“The turnout exceeded our expectations and we are very happy that we provided a truly global opportunity for people to come together and enjoy sailing. We hope this event will become a regular feature in the global sailing calendar.”

Mr Simpson, a former Olympic gold medallist, died aged 36 in an accident in San Francisco Bay in May 2013.

Money raised from the event will go towards supporting the work of his foundation, which provides opportunities for young people to take part in sailing.

Of the 678 venues that took part, Pennine Sailing Club was in the top 50 for its number of participants.