British teams set to take on the Women's Offshore World Series in October

An all-female trans-Atlantic race from Plymouth to Antigua will take place on October 28th

The first Women’s Offshore World (WOW) series has already attracted strong interest from sailors across Europe including France, Spain, Turkey, Tunisia and Italy.

Teams will compete in identical 33ft Beneteau Figaro 2s when they race the 3,300 miles to cross the Atlantic. It’s a race designed to test navigational skills as well as stamina and endurance, say organisers, but it’s only open to women.

One of the first British teams to sign up for the two-handed race was duo Hannah Jenna and Sammie Evans, who will race as Team Beaudacious.

“The whole idea of racing in an all girl fleet is really wild,” said Sammie Evans. “We are going to be battling it out in these one-design boats. So it’s not about the best boat. It’s about the best team. It’s a level playing field.”

As well as competing against each other, the sailors have been tasked with testing water for pollution and recording sightings of marine mammals.

Sam Joseph from Team Concise, who are organising the event with the Royal Western Yacht Club (RWYC), Antigua Yacht Club and Plymouth University, said: “These are really competitive women and they’ve been racing against the guys all over the world and we thought, why not give them their own race?”

Organisers hope this will become a bi-annual race.

Read Elaine Bunting’s blog questioning if segregated sailing is a good idea.