Heaven Can Wait regatta to raise funds for cancer

The organising committee for the 2009 Heaven Can Wait Regatta has issued the Notices of Race (NORs) for the 24 Hour Race, and also the One Lap Dash. Both documents can be viewed on the HCW website at www.heavencanwait.com.au.
Both races will start at 1100 hours on Saturday October 3, 2009, and will take participants on a circuit around Lake Macquarie.
As in 2008, the event is organised by the Heaven Can Wait Yacht Club, and co-hosted by the Royal Motor Yacht Club Toronto. The race begins at RMYC Toronto, the race committee is based there, and pre- and post-race functions are held at the club.
Now in its fourth year, the inaugural race was held in 2006, and was conceived and originally organised by Lake Macquarie sailor and cancer survivor Shaun Lewicki to raise funds for cancer research, awareness and support programs.
As in previous years, the primary beneficiaries are the NSW Cancer Council, NSW Division (which receives 70% of funds raised), and the Royal Volunteer Coastal Patrol, Lake Macquarie Division.
In 2008, nearly $13,000 was raised for these two organisations.
The money donated to the Cancer Council was put towards programs promoting awareness, prevention and treatment of men's cancers.
Yachts competing in the 24 hour race will sail around the course as many times as they can over the 24 hour period, with the race concluding at 1200 hours on Sunday October 4 (the additional hour is due to Daylight Saving starting in NSW at 0200 hours on October 4).
Participants in the One Lap Dash, will sail the same course, with the finish line to be set by the race committee according to conditions on the day so as to allow all participants to gain a result.
Yachts are encouraged to compete in both events.
There have also been some significant changes to the entry fee system for the event, with the aim being to reduce the costs of entry for individual skippers, and to encourage more community, friends and family participation in fundraising.
“We've changed the entry fees for individual boats to a flat fee of $150 per boat, regardless of crew numbers,” said Lewicki, who is also commodore of the HCW Yacht Club. “This will result in a significant reduction in entry fees for those skippers who have covered the costs of crew participation in previous years.
“For the One Lap Dash, entry fees have gone up slightly, to $75 – discounted to $50 for those boats also participating in the 24 hour race,” he said.
“At the same time, we are working with the Cancer Council's Hunter Division to have a 'Sailathon' fundraising program, whereby individual crews can raise money from family, friends, workmates, employers, clients, customers, suppliers and the like – and we are working on some substantial prizes for the crews who raise the most money.
“We think this is an opportunity to raise more money for our charity activities, and also to further involve friends and family of those participating, as well as the wider community,” Lewicki said.
“As in 2008, all entries will be through our secure on-line entry system, accessible via the HCW website at http://www.heavencanwait.com.au. And as in previous years, all entries will receive tax receipts for their entry fees, allowing them to be claimed as tax deductions as donations to charity.”
For those boats participating in the full 24 hour race, the organising committee has also fine-tuned its “logsheet” system whereby skippers report their positions at the end of the race.
“We've developed a more detailed logsheet system, providing a lot more waypoints in between each of the turning marks, and which give skippers and crew an indication of the distance they have travelled around the course during the race,” said Lewicki.
“At the end of the race, we'll not only be asking skippers to report their precise latitude and longitude — according to the GPS they must carry on board – but also the last waypoint or mark they passed, their approximate total distance around the course, and the nearest boat.
“We think this system will go a long way to overcoming some issues we encountered in providing final, accurate results in a timely manner last year.
“We are also publicising a draft version of the logsheet and the course map at this point, so we can get feedback from participants and the sailing community on this system. We would therefore welcome any suggestions or ideas on this system, and how workable skippers think it will be.
“We plan to provide each entry in the 24 hour race with a laminated version of the logsheet, along with a waterproof Texta-type pen, so they can log their progress during the race, as well as their final location.”
Visit the HCW website's “documentation” section to view the draft logsheet and draft course map.
For more information on the HCW 24 hour yacht race, please visit the website at www.heavencanwait.com.au, email info@heavencanwait.com.au.

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