The 27th World Pilot Gig Championships are set to be the biggest yet with 151 gigs registered.

This is an increase on the 135 from last year and a world apart from the 17 that took part in the first World Championships in 1990.


In terms of participants there will be a minimum 142 ladies and 140 men on the start line on Saturday, following on from the veterans races where there are currently 58 men’s veterans (over-40) and 31 super veterans (over-50), and 56 ladies veterans and 28 super veterans.


The event will also see international crews from Bermuda, Ireland, Netherlands and the USA, with the Dutch contingent now up to seven clubs.


The international flavour of the event could increase next year.


World Pilot Gig Championships Committee Chairman Rick Persich said: “There has been interest from Malta, who are hoping to get funding from their Olympic committee and Singapore has made enquiries. I anticipate we may get more Americans too because there are seven gig clubs in America."


The event starts on Friday at 6:30pm when the Ladies veterans race gets underway and it heralds the inaugural Isles of Scilly Festival, a series of events celebrating local art, creativity and island life throughout the month of May.

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