Thundercats 2016 are set to go! Known as the ‘world’s toughest watersport’, ThunderCat Racing returns to Watergate Bay for a fourth year of adrenaline and action on Saturday 19 & Sunday 20 November from midday.
Expect high drama, big airs and people overboard as The Extreme Academy at Watergate Bay gets set to host the next leg of the 2016 RYA British ThunderCat Championship over the weekend of Saturday 19 to Sunday 20 September.
Saturday & Sunday will see full racing days with more than 20 teams completing 6 heats, with the top 12 teams going through to the final 9 lap heat on both days! Fun, fast action packed racing guaranteed for both spectators and racers alike.
On the water testing starts at 11.30am each day with racing beginning at midday.
All photography © Tim Tapping.
For those not in the know, ThunderCats are four-metre long inflatable powerboat catamarans capable of reaching speeds of up to 60mph thanks to their 50hp outboard engines.
Each boat is crewed by two people: a driver to steer and a co-pilot to stabilise the boat and achieve the greatest speed possible around the M-shaped course. Those attending can expect a truly great spectator sport, as the action passes just 10m from the shoreline in a circuit race that fights against the incoming surf.
Podium presentations will take place soon after the racing finishes. Spectators can choose to watch the action from the shore, the cliffs or even The Beach Hut terrace if the weather turns damp.
Did you know…
– ThunderCats are inflatable catamarans predominately manufactured in South Africa where the sport began back in the early 1980’s.
– The name ThunderCat comes from one of the very first racing series in Australia 20 years ago.
– ThunderCat Racing is a global sport with championships taking place in 18 countries. The Union Internationale Motonautique (UIM) is the international governing body and the British Championship is governed by the Royal Yachting Association (RYA).
– ThunderCat Racing has three disciplines designed to push teams to the limit:
– M-SHAPE is mainly run in surf and is a short course approx 200m x 300m
– CIRCUIT is a larger course approx 500m x 500m for achieving maximum speeds of (110 kpm), like this event held at Watergate Bay
– LONGHAUL/ENDURO is run over a distance of 100km+ where teams race along a stretch of coast and around a checkpoint.
– The catamarans in ThunderCats can reach speeds of up to 60mph.
– Depending on the driver and wave conditions, they can reach heights of up to 15ft in the air.
For a full 2016 event round up at Watergate Bay view our Events Calendar.