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Wednesday 31st July 2013

Nelson's Pursuit Race prize giving ceremony in Nelson's Dockyard, Antigua.

Planning is already underway for the 2013 Nelson's Pursuit Race scheduled for December 31, 2013.  This is an all-comers event held on New Year’s Eve day (locally known as Old Year’s Night) with the first start between 11:00 am and 12:00 noon below Fort Charlotte outside English Harbour.  It provides an afternoon of fun and excitement for everyone, particularly Caribbean cruisers who love being in Antigua for Christmas and New Year's and are not otherwise set up for racing events.

The first new sponsor to come forward this year to support the Nelson's Pursuit Race is Falmouth Harbour Marina.  Marina Manager Bobby Reis was delighted to sign up as the first sponsor for the 2013 edition.  ‘This race, although it takes place over only one day, is a fantastic event which will help increase the number of yachtsmen that decide to choose Antigua as their New Year stop over either to race or to be part of our festivities.  Aside from the great participation, the event is one which celebrates the spirit of yachting and is accessible for all boats, whether sleek super-charged race boats or mom and pop cruisers.’

Falmouth Harbour Marina.  Photo compliments of

The race was conceived as a re-enactment of Lord Nelson’s famous pursuit of the French fleet under the command of Admiral Pierre Villeneuve across the Atlantic in 1805, culminating in the blockade of Cadiz and the subsequent battle of Trafalgar, Nelson’s greatest victory, during which he was tragically shot and mortally wounded by a French sniper.

The slowest boat to enter the race starts first and carries the French flag, with the remainder of the fleet representing the British in hot pursuit attempting to capture the French flag and claim victory for the Brits.  All boats are assigned a start time based on the boat’s size and its anticipated speed around the course.  The first boat to cross the finish line is declared the winner!  This format has been very popular with all types of boats from cruising boats with heavy equipment such as davits and life rafts to beautiful 140-foot classics such as Rebecca!

The event is seeking new sponsors this year to facilitate marketing to a broader audience and to increase participation, thereby encouraging more people to spend time in Antigua over Christmas and New Year's.  Marketing will include brochures distributed at international boat shows and regattas, launching of an official website, social media promotions as well as participating in the Antigua and Barbuda Marine Association's annual marketing plan.

All proceeds from this race are donated to a very worthwhile charity – the St. John Hospice - which provides palliative care for the terminally ill in Antigua.  In addition to the usual small entry fee, additional donations of any amount are appreciated to really boost the total funds raised for the charitable organisation which relies entirely on donations to continue to provide essential services.  In 2012, the Nelson’s Pursuit Race raised close to EC $10,000 for this essential charity.

Sponsorship of this event will appeal to local marine trades and services businesses which will reap the most benefit from the event for a relatively small investment.  If you would like more information on sponsorship packages available, please contact Alison Sly-Adams at  or (268) 725-4692.

If you're going to be in or near Antigua around New Year's Eve this year, don't miss this gentlemen's race which will assure you an exciting start to your New Year's Eve celebrations.  There will be plenty of great prizes including scrimshaw plaques and all entries receive a bottle of rum!

For more information visit

Media Enquiries:
Alison Sly-Adams
+1 (268) 725-4692

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