The Celtic Longboat is a 4 person coxed rowing boat used for racing, training and recreation. Racing this type of boat has a long and interesting history on the West Wales coast.
Since the 1970's local coastal villages have put up teams to compete for what has often been relatively large cash prizes in the traditional 'pulling races'. The longboats started in 1978 when Tom Sutton, working on Ramsey Island, St Davids found the remnants of an Irish Curragh (wooden frame, tarred-skinned rowing boat) washed up. He decided to re-skin the boat and enter it in the local Solva Traditional Boat Rowing Race, he also thought that if it was made the out of fibreglass it would be even faster
Soon interest in the new boat was grrew and a few more were made for locals who held races around Ramsey Island (a race considered too dangerous now!). From this developed the Pembrokeshire Longboat League. These boats raced around the potentially treacherous coastline of West Wales and even race across the Irish Sea and are still some of the fastest at 'the Great River Race' in London. Dale Sailing was selected as the new builder in 1999 and to date the over 35 boats have been built (4 of which have gone to Dubai) with many more on order. The new boats have caused a resurgence of interest in racing as now everyone will be able to compete on level terms in the new one design Celtic Longboat.
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