Recent months have seen remarkable progress for the RS Venture Connect. It began with adoption by World Sailing into its para sailing programme; continued by winning two top international marine industry awards and has been rounded off by one of the most successful sailing Paralympians coming on board to help establish the Class.
In November World Sailing selected the RS Venture Connect for the 2018 Para World Championships in Sheboygan, USA and chose to include it in the Para Development Program (PDP). The RS Venture’s plug & play para options mean the boat can be quickly configured to suit sailors with a wide range of disabilities, making round-robin racing in supplied boats possible. Click here to find the Notice of Race.
RS Sailing will supply eight boats so sailors can compete at the Worlds by simply travelling themselves – massively reducing their own and federation’s competition costs and largely removing the logistical difficulties and footprint associated with shipping boats. The plan is to trial a stadium style format close to the shore, with heats leading to a final – launching a dramatic new era for para racing.
Hot on the heels of selection for the Worlds the RS Venture’s electronic controls package, developed by RS in conjunction with Scanstrut, was announced as winner of the overall DAME award at the international METS show. This award is contested by innovative products from leading manufacturers across the whole marine industry and is considered by many to be the ultimate award. And if this wasn’t recognition enough, in January the electronic control system was also awarded the, some would say, equally prestigious Pittman Award for Innovation in the USA.
The RS Venture Connect clearly has a great future and contributes to the opportunity to build para sailing internationally. Who better to help develop the RS Venture Connect class than the effervescent Gold and Bronze medal winning sailor, Helena Lucas “The combination of the RS Venture, supplied boats and the stadium format is almost certain to attract top teams” says Helena. “And at the other end the opportunity to create a pathway from training into racing could make a big difference to the sport, so I’m excited to put some of my time into helping make it happen!”
The RS Venture Connect, with its pathway and accessible competition format opportunities, represents a positive development for sailing during its bid for Paralympic reinstatement. RS Sailing is proud to have developed the boat and be supporting this effort.
Contact Helena Lucas at Helena@rssailing.com on Class activity matters.