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News at Whitstable Yacht Club

Forts Race Weekend

The Whitstable Forts Race Weekend

***Dates confirmed for 2020:***
***23rd and 24th May***

The UK's premier catamaran focused long distance race! Now part of the Allen Endurance Series!


Over the last 24 years, our long-distance race has evolved into a well-balanced test of sailing and racing skills, attracting top national helms as well as experienced club racers and international entries. Now part of the Allen Endurance Series, the Forts Race has been opened to a wider range of boats and sailors, including catamarans and monohulls. Laid out in hub and spoke format, with each leg returning through a gate near the club, the full course covers up to 85 kilometres in estuary, coastal and open sea conditions, and provides racing at all points of sailing. The flexibility of this format differentiates the Forts Race from other marathon events.

  • It can be shortened for all competitors if winds are light.
  • It can be shortened for smaller boats, to provide similar duration of racing.
  • The course can be changed if conditions change.
  • The risk of cancellation is reduced as it is easier to manage.
  • Competitors can retire on passing through the gate each round.
  • Support craft can be rapidly re-deployed where needed in emergency.

Get the latest Forts Race news by liking our Facebook Page:


The Whitstable Bay Endurance and Forts Race Weekend is open to all dinghies and sports catamarans with a PY rating of 1270 and lower. Paddle boards, windsurf and Kite surf entry not permitted. Entries limited to 80 boats in total. Competitors should enter through the SailRacer website. A limited number of entries may be available on the day.

Entries before 10th May:

  • Single Handed £40
  • Double Handed £60

Entries after 10th May:

  • Single Handed £50
  • Double Handed £70

Go to to enter!

Key Statistics

The most popular classes have been Dart 18, Formula 18, Hurricane 5.9, Spitfire and Tornado. Typically the race attracts 25+ catamaran entries. Tidal flow is generally less than three knots, and even then only out to sea at the Forts The race usually lasts between 3 and 5 hours, depending on the conditions and the speed of your boat.


Saturday 18th May

  • Registration between 10am and 1pm.
  • The Shakedown race briefing at 12.30am.
  • The shakedown race will start at 2pm.
  • Club bar open until late! Drinks promotions and live music!

Sunday 19th May

  • Registration between 9am and 10am.
  • Race Safety Briefing for the Forts Race at 10am (mandatory for all competitors)
  • The Forts Race will start at 11am at the earliest on Sunday
  • Prize Giving will take place as soon as possible after the Forts Race on Sunday.


There are a large number of accommodation options within walking distance of the club (see the WYC accommodation pages), and WYC has a limited number of bunk rooms available. Booking early is recommended! Parking in the Whitstable town centre, close to the club, is cheap at £2.50/day.

We also have a limited amount of Campervan/Motorhome parking available about 5 minutes walk from the club. Please contact us in advance at if you're planning to bring a van to ensure we can book your space.

Forts Race Course


The courses and format of the race will be published by 12:00 depending on weather conditions. The race is intended to provide a ‘shake-down’ for all boats and will be subject to the same safety conditions as the Forts Race.


The long-distance race will be sailed in the area off Whitstable Yacht Club with up to FIVE radiating “legs”, East to Herne Bay Pier, North East to the Kentish Flats Wind Farm, Northwest along the coast of Sheppey, West up the Swale Estuary and North to the Red Sands Forts – only double handed Fast Cats will make this leg. Course details for each Class will be provided at registration on Saturday. The Race Officer reserves the right to shorten the course for all OR individual competitors OR all competitors of specific classes.

Click here (updated 26th August 2018) to download a provisional list of marks which can be used for the long distance racing.

Important Documents

2019 Documents:


The 2018 Forts Race was held on Sunday 9th September.


The 2017 Forts Race was held on Sunday 10th September.


The 2016 Forts Race was held on Saturday 3rd September.


The 2015 Forts Race was held on Saturday 12th September.


The 2014 Forts Race was held on Saturday 13th September.


The 2013 Forts Race was held on Saturday 21st September.


The 2012 Forts Race was held on Saturday 15th September, with three Round the Cans races on Sunday 16th September.



For more information call (01227 272942) or email the WYC Office. Like us on Facebook at