The adrenaline-fuelled Thundercat Racing Series is making its second appearance at Watergate Bay from 28th to 30th June in the National Championships.
Racing starts at 12.30pm on Saturday and Sunday.
The Extreme Academy at Watergate Bay is set to host the 7th and 8th rounds of the competition over the weekend of Friday 28th – Sunday 30th June 2013. The surf powerboat catamarans, powered by 50hp outboard engines, will race close to the shoreline in circuit races, fighting the incoming surf.
Thundercats are four-metre-long inflatable catamarans. They are capable of reaching speeds of up to 60mph and 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. With the course just 10m from the shoreline, spectators are able to get close up to the action.
Will Ashworth of Watergate Bay Hotel said: “This is the second time we’ve hosted the Thundercats National Championships and we’re delighted to be involved in such a unique event again. The sport is really different from anything else we host at Watergate Bay. The races are adrenaline filled and it’s a lot of fun to watch, so it’ll make a great warm up for the World Championships later this year.”
The World Championships are to be held at Watergate Bay and Pentewan Sands over the weekend of 11 – 13 October 2013.
We caught up with James, one of the Thundercat crew, to find out a little more about the sport.
How long have you been racing?
In the UK, we have been operating since 2004 so coming up to our tenth year now!
How do you get into Thundercat racing?
ThunderCat Racing is part of the Race4inclusivity.com mission which means no matter your background or ability you can be part of our sport whether it’s volunteering to set up or hold a marshals flag you can signup at an event or just get in contact.To start racing you can join on most budgets as you can join an existing team as a copilot or if your budget allows start your own team by purchasing a new or used boat.. partake in our training program and then hit the start line at the next event!
Where else do you race?
We race every where from Gibraltar to Folkestone – including Pentewan on the South coast of Cornwall – Pentewan and Watergate Bay will make up the two venues for the UIM World Championship in October which we are super excited for.
Where does the name come from?
The name came from one of the very first series in Australia 20 years ago and we are now live in over 15 countries all running the same format of racing.
What is a Thundercat race? We know it’s an M shaped course, how many times do you go round?
Thundercat’s is slightly different to other racing series..we test the drivers in three different disciplines to ensure the winners have a broad range of skills! These are the M-shape which is used in surf, a circuit course which is a longer course used on flat water and then finally the endurance long-hauls which are a grueling 60 miles long around the UK’s coast lines. All three are used at different times during the season but in the World Championships in October everyone will be tested on all three in 10 days.
We know they can reach speeds of 60mph, how high do they jump?
Depends on how insane the driver is but I have seen them hit heights of 15ft.
Any other information you would like to give us before the event?
We really are just trying to promote the UIM World Championship at the minute in October 4th-13th where we are aiming for 30 teams from every corner of the World!
Thanks James, and good luck!
For a full 2013 event round up at Watergate Bay view our Events Calendar.