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Spitfire sailors crowned Amateur World Champions

Team RAFBF Spitfire triumphed at the J70 Class World Sailing Championships on Saturday, to finish ninth overall and named world champions.

The team was one of 79 competing  at the championship in La Rochelle, France, where racing took place over four days.

The team is a privately-owned amateur sailing team made up of serving and ex-serving RAF personnel and civilians who compete at the highest level while also promoting the Fund.

Team RAF Benevolent Fund Spitfire out on the waterTeam manager and skipper Wing Commander Simon Ling said: "We are absolutely delighted with the result, the racing was challenging and incredibly close but to achieve the crown of World Amateur Champions is the team's most significant achievement since we formed five years ago.

"Once again we were immensely proud to fly the flag of the RAF Benevolent Fund, indeed our branding and the story behind it proved very popular on this international stage."

The team's performance tops their result in last year’s competition when they finished third overall amateur sailing team.

Simon's fellow team mates are Tony Hanlon, Ian Southworth and Craig Burlton. The team are now looking forward to competing in Cowes next week and hopefully at the European Championships in Monaco in October.

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