Round Britain Race: a linguistic challenge

Austrian Hannes Bohinc brushes up on his Scottish

Taking part in the eight-day Round Britain Race, which starts on Saturday, will be more than just a boating challenge.

For all the 48 teams on the start line at Portsmouth it will also be a major logistical problem, particularly perhaps for the international competitors.

Austrian Hannes Bohinc, owner and throttleman of, one of the pre-race favourites, considers planning and logistics almost as demanding as the race itself and fundamental to his team’s preparation.

“We have a reasonable understanding of the sea conditions and the boat’s performance,” says Bohinc.

“But in such a long and tough race where things will not always go to plan, there is an even greater reliance upon our engineers and support crew to be in the right place at the right time and with the right equipment.

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“The boat must be in the best possible condition every morning before we set off and getting the land crew from A-to-B each day is hard enough, sourcing equipment locally could be a real challenge, without local knowledge or the language.”

With just days remaining before and 47 other competitors undertake the 130 nautical mile first leg from Portsmouth to Plymouth, final preparations are being undertaken with road maps and translation books at the ready.

“We hope that on and off the water we will be equipped for the challenges thrown our way,” says Bohinc, “although we know it will become more difficult as we go from Northern Ireland to the north of Scotland.

“Should we eat or inhale an Arbroath Smokie?” 


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