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Hebrides News


A fleet of sailing boats will cover around 100 nautical miles in 24 hours, racing from Lochmaddy to the archipelago, using the islands as a turning point before returning to the finish line


The inaugural event launched in 2015. Bolstered by excellent feedback from competitors and visitors alike, organisers Comann Na Mara and race managers Clyde Cruising Club has taken the plunge to commit time and funding to a second event – vowing to make the challenge biennial thereafter.


The Second St Kilda Challenge receives cross-party backing from the Scottish Parliament’s Marine Tourism Committee.


The event will take place in June  2018 and organisers are expecting a substantial increase in competitors


A third participating fleet leaving from Rathlin Island in Northern Ireland has been announced and will include Scottish Clipper 60 ‘Taeping.’


Last year’s event was a welcome economic boost for North Uist, with 30 yachts bringing dozens of crew ashore, while the cultural festivities on shore also attracted further visitors to the island’s main town of Lochmaddy.


Accommodation, local services and attractions, as well as food, drink and craft producers, all reported a significant rise in trade.














Comann Na Mara chairman Gus MacAulay said: “We have had exceptional courage and support from the community, participants and those who were sorry to have missed the first event


“I was quite overwhelmed at the end of the first event to hear so much positive feedback, so for me and the other organisers there was only ever going to be one outcome – to keep forging on with the next St Kilda Challenge.


“We are truly excited about making the event bigger and better for 2018 and look forward to welcoming many more people to North Uist before sending them on their way to the great adventure of the St Kilda archipelago.”

Stuart McMillan, chairman of Holyrood’s cross-party Marine Tourism Committee, said: “Next year is the second  St Kilda Challenge and clearly it is a race that requires tremendous skill and ability. It also helps keep Scotland in the international spotlight. I extend warm wishes to everyone who is taking part.”



Plans for expanded St Kilda yacht race announced

16 May 2017

A bigger and better competitive yacht race around St Kilda is to take place next year.

Comann Na Mara chairman Gus MacAulay