An invitation to log your interest in the 2009 French Access Nationals news article
An invitation from Richard Smallwood.
A message from Keith Harris has prompted me to send a message to you all to ask you to think about participation in the 2009 French Nationals to be held near Nantes from Friday, 26th, to Sunday, 28th June inclusive. We all had such a good time in 2008 that I hope that you are at least considering taking part again in 2009.
Clearly the distances and ferry fares are more than last time and the £/€ exchange rate is less favourable right now (but this might change for the better before June). I have done a check of the most likely ferry routes and attach a summary for your information.
If anyone is definitely going and wants to use the Portsmouth-St Malo route (with cabin on the way over) it is important to book very early as the cabins get booked up. The High Speed ferry routes also get booked up. Note that these are also subject to cancellation or delay in event of bad weather, but hopefully this is not so likely in June (but take your sea-sickness pills as they have a funny motion).
To answer Keith's point, it seems impractical to make a group booking as we all have different requirements, and discounted group bookings only seem to be available if 10 or more vehicles travel together. However, if addressees reply to me indicating the route they prefer, and there is a clear preference for one company, I will approach that company to try for a discount. In 2008, most of us went by P&O from Dover, and they were most unsympathetic.
Keith, there was only Simon Harle's Liberty there in 2008 as the French have not taken the class up. You may wish to liaise with Gordon/Simon and any other possible UK Liberty sailors before committing yourself to this or the September European event. I feel sure the French will lay on races if there are two or more Libertys there.
I am waiting for information about accommodation from Marie-Claude of the French Access Association and will distribute this to those who express interest when I get it. I am not able to make a preliminary visit in 2009 as I did in 2008 and hope that, after your 2008 experience, you will all feel confident to make your own bookings, although I will try to help anyone who has real difficulty, especially those who need a special room with Wetroom facilities. I tried the Mister Bed website http://www.misterbed.fr/ today but it was down for maintenance.
Follow this link for Ferry Options for Nantes – Typical Costs for Car plus 3 Passengers
Will anyone interested please let me know whether they are on email@example.com :
1. Almost certainly going and preferred ferry route,
2. Thinking about going and preferred ferry route, or
3. Not going in 2009.
Your earliest reply will be much appreciated, and I will then keep those in categories 1 and 2 above informed of any developments.
Please also forward this message to anyone not included who has heard about the 2008 event and might wish to join in the fun!
Best Wishes to all for Good Sailing in 2009.