Cruising Challenge Award winner

Alan Painter from Hoxton, east London, won this year’s River Canal Rescue-sponsored Cruising Challenge trophy, presented at the IWA Festival of Water, Ilkeston, over the August bank holiday weekend.

The Cruising Challenge Award recognises the most enterprising non-continuous journey undertaken from August 2016 to the opening of the 2017 event and alongside a trophy, the winner receives free RCR membership.

Alan in his 57ft narrowboat Stargazer, successfully navigated 1160 miles and 818 locks. Starting from London, Stargazer visited Oxford, Cambridge, Stratford-on-Avon, Birmingham, Llangollen, Chester, Liverpool, Lancaster and Manchester.

While there are no maximum/minimum cruising requirements and/or cruising breaks, no section of canal or river can be counted more than once in the same direction in the same calendar month and entrants are required to provide a full log of their cruise showing miles and locks which must be supported with evidence of reaching key destinations during the cruise.

Entrants are judged on the overall cruise content – rather than the longest – and extra points are given to boaters travelling lesser-used waterways, reaching distant end navigations and using inland tidal sections. Overall log presentation is also taken into account.

Alan comments: “I was delighted to win. Navigating the Ribble Link was challenging and sailing over hills cannot be beaten – I love it!”  He plans to cover Lincoln, Boston and York before Christmas.

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