Ex-British Class IIIC champion killed while competing for the European title

Veteran British powerboat driver Ian Stirling (59) (pictured) was fatally injured at Harwich on Saturday when his boat was involved in a high-speed crash.

The boat hit a wave and flipped into the air ejecting both crew members before landing heavily on its driver.

Stirling was taking part in the European Class III C (two litre) championships in one of only three international offshore meetings held in the UK this year.

The accident happened during the third lap of the opening round of the title contest. The main European championships were abandoned as a mark of respect.

On Sunday afternoon, around 50 powerboats went to the scene of the accident where flowers were laid on the water and a minute’s silence was held.

“Mr Stirling was a highly experienced pilot with 25 years of powerboat racing at a European and world championship level. He is going to be greatly missed within the powerboat racing family,” John Puddifoot, RYA Powerboat Racing Manager, said.

The RYA is conducting an enquiry into the accident.