In the prestigious Tall Ships Races 2021 to start in Klaipėda in June 2021, Klaipėda and Lithuania will be represented by two vessels of Klaipėda University: by Brabander, the biggest sailing vessel in Lithuania, and Odyssey, a training marine yacht.
Their applications have already been approved by the race organisers. So far, no other vessels from Lithuania have registered for the race. “We are honoured to represent Lithuania, a maritime state, at an international event of this scale. We are proud that the flags of both Lithuania and Klaipėda University will fly in the race which gets together a large fleet from various countries of the world”, says dr. Artūras Razbadauskas, KU Rector.
KU sailing vessel Brabander, together with the entire fleet, will start in Klaipėda on June 30 of the next year and will sail the first stage of the race to Turku (Finland), and from there to Tallinn (Estonia). In the second stage, it will continue from the Estonian capital city to Mariehamn (Åland Islands). The crew of the University-owned training marine yacht Odyssey also plans to participate in that stage.
The sailing vessel Brabander is an experienced participant of the prestigious Tall Ships Races in both the Baltic and North Seas, while the yacht Odyssey will accept the challenge for the first time. The route for the yacht was chosen not accidentally: the final point of the second stage is the port of Mariehamn in the Åland islands, which boasts Åland University of Applied Sciences that Klaipėda University collaborates with. Thus, the programme of the stay of the two KU vessels in Mariehamn will include meetings with the representatives of the academic community.
The Tall Ships Races is a unique event due to its great attention to the education of the younger generation of yachtsmen. All participants wishing to join the community must respect the condition for half of their crews to be made up of young people who are still learning to sail. Klaipėda University plans to organise the selection of young seafarers-trainees and invite sailing enthusiasts from Klaipėda Cadet School and the Lithuanian Maritime Academy as well as business representatives to take part.
- Major sailing vessel races in the Baltic Sea take place every four years, and about 100 vessels usually participate.
- The 2021 Races will take place from June 26 to August 3. The fleet of sailing vessels will start in Klaipėda and, within six weeks, visit the cities of Turku (Finland), Tallinn (Estonia), Mariehamn (Åland Islands), and Szczecin (Poland).