Following a two year absence from the racing scene, the former world leading offshore powerboat race organiser plans to join the Honda Formula 4-Stroke association in a joint venture.

Following a two year absence from the racing scene, the United Kingdom Offshore Boating Association plans to join the Honda Formula 4-Stroke association in a joint venture on 10-11 May.

The UKOBA burgee will fly over a two-day meeting based at Warsash on the River Hamble with the main event, a Basic status race open to all classes and type of planing craft, taking place on the Sunday of the weekend.

The plan is to turn the clock back to the days when offshore races were held with the minimum amount of onshore organisation. Instead of using expensive cranes to launch, craft can arrive on their own bottoms and be scrutineered afloat so keeping racing costs to a minimum. Another revival will be the provision of a commercial spectator boat.

As almost all early races were held in Solent waters, friends, families and non-boat owning enthusiasts were taken out to the start and finishing areas aboard a specially chartered spectator boat. These offered refreshments and a running commentary on the positions held by the leading pack further down the course. It was aboard such craft that many gained their first insight into offshore racing, some later joining the sport as competitors.

Saturday will mainly be used to scrutineer competing craft for the following day’s racing after which crews will be given the opportunity to offer trips to sponsors and other supporters. Time will also be allotted to those interested testing the top speed of their craft over the measured sea mile in Southampton Water.

The nearby Royal Southern Yacht Club, itself once a leading offshore powerboat race organiser, will later host a reception on Saturday evening for all taking part.

The race will start from the area of Hill Head before heading west toward the Beaulieu River and across to Cowes as the larger classes race out to the Nab Tower.

Details of entry together with a timetable of events can be obtained from UKOBA on 44 (0)2380 457209 or F4SA on 44 (0)1489 559555.