Two of the five entrants for the famous single-handed transatlantic race are members of local sailing clubs and have similar boats built in Kent. The Jester Challenge was created for skippers of small boats who want to test their skill and self-reliance and is a uniquely successful experiment in single-handed ocean sailing. This year it’s the “full” race to the Azores and on to Newport Rhode Island, starting at Plymouth on Sunday 8 May, 2022.
Bernie Branfield from Hoo Ness Yacht Club has previously competed in the shorter Baltimore Jester Challenge in 2017, across to Ireland. Bernie’s boat is Louisa, an Invicta 26. John Apps is a veteran solo ocean sailor from Medway Cruising Club. John’s boat is called Arelia of Hoo, a 25ft Invicta Mk 1.