The powerboats are back in Bay despite fears Covid-19 would sink the event

Bob McCarthy and James Goldsmith in their new Banshee, Boat 9, If Only - built in Ireland. Taking the chequered flag – which they did in all 3 races over the weekend.Bob McCarthy and James Goldsmith in their new Banshee, Boat 9, If Only - built in Ireland. Taking the chequered flag – which they did in all 3 races over the weekend.

Powerboat racing returned to the Bay thanks to the efforts of the team running the Offshore Circuit Racers Driving Association.

OCRDA’s founder and chairman Bob McCarthy, from Kingsbridge, feared Covid would call a halt to any racing this summer but with safety measures in place, the first racing of the year was underway.

Secretary Cath Lovell said: “After a summer of cancelled events and uncertainty due to Covid-19, we didn’t really expect to be able to run any powerboat races this year.

“We had approximately three and a half weeks to put together all the usual race prep as well as risk assessments to comply with Covid-19 requirements and restrictions.”

As Living Coasts was closed, organisers didn’t have a base for race control until the Wolf Rock Boat Company in Kingsbridge saved the day by loaning their Brig Rib Trailer.

Sixteen teams entered the event.

Cath added: “We are so grateful to everyone who comes and supports our races.

“We are extremely lucky to have a keen group of volunteers.

“The public who enjoy our race weekends help make the atmosphere so enjoyable.”

First place in Formula Sport class were Mark Childs and Mark Hayward in Boat 96, Fat Boy, an impressive Cougar which attracts a lot of attention.

First place in Formula One was Bob McCarthy, OCRDA Chairman, and James Goldsmith, were in Bob’s brand new Banshee.

The calm conditions suited Bob perfectly and he quickly made a good lead on the rest of his class, which he retained throughout all races, winning all three over the weekend.

Second place in F1 were local brothers, Nick and Jeremy Newsam in Boat 922, Enforcer, who came second in the first race, they ran out of fuel in the second race, about 10m from the finish line.

First and second place in Formula Two were Ben Brown and Andrew Jenvey in Boat 66, Thurston.

First place in Formula Three was another new team with a new boat Neil Williams and Connie Jones in Boat 15, One Step Beyond.