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Katie Miller aboard bluQube

Bristol, 6th May 2010 – bluQube, a leading vendor of financial management software and title sponsor for Katie Miller, one of the UK’s most promising young solo sailors, is proud to announce the entry of both Katie and members of its own staff into the 2010 Ladies Who Launch Channel Challenge officially launched by Dee Caffari at the Royal Southampton Yacht Club earlier this year. The sailing trip takes place on 29th May between Lymington and Cherbourg and is intended to raise funds for Help for Heroes and to recognise and celebrate women’s contributions to sailing.

Katie Miller commented, “This is a marvellous opportunity for ladies to really get a feel for what sailing’s all about and to prove that we can do it! Crossing the channel is no pleasure cruise, you have to think about shipping, fog and the thought of losing sight of land for 6 hours. When I heard about the event I jumped at the chance of taking part. Not only am I obviously really keen to champion the sport and encourage as many women as possible to take it up, at the same time it’s great to be able to support such a worth cause such as Help for Heroes. To make it even more fun, I’ve told the crew that we’ll try and re-create the same conditions as my Ostar trip last year, so I’ll be waking them all up every 40 minutes and insisting that we feast on freeze dried food until we reach Cherbourg!”

bluQube’s crew will include Katie as skipper together with her sister Sophie Miller and Jane Waghorn & Laurie McNeill both from sponsor bluQube.

bluQube’s Jane Waghorn who is taking part in the event together with colleague Laurie McNeill (pictured) explained why she was tempted to get involved, “This really represented a once in a lifetime opportunity which was hard to resist. I’m not relishing the early start (3 am) but I’m really to looking forward to working as part of team, making a contribution and understanding how the boat works, rather than just being a passenger and having it sailed for you. As a sponsor it’s also great to accompany Katie, so we can empathise what it’s like for her when she’s away on longer solo voyages. For me, Cherbourg is far enough and will certainly test my comfort zone. Above all though, I will be looking forward to the huge sense of achievement when we finish, knowing that we’ve done it on our own and raised money for a great cause.”

Help for Heroes (www.helpforheroes.org.uk) is a registered charity that raises money to support members of the Armed Forces who have been wounded in the service of their country.

Event organiser Laurie Bates commented, “Ladies Who Launch was inspired by all the ladies who take to the sea, often in their husband’s boats as their crew: fetching fenders, grabbing lines, filling the galley, entertaining the children over long passages, who I felt, warranted recognition. However, with the wonderful achievements of Ellen Macarthur, Dee Caffari, our Olympic Stars, and now Katie Miller and other skilled and ambitious women who are taking on the challenges of the ocean matching evenly with their male competitors, this really has become something to be celebrated!

“In 2002 Ladies Who Launch was able to raise £17,000 for Leukaemia Busters, a Southampton based research facility which has just announced an exciting breakthrough in the treatment of cancer. For 2010 we are inspired by the Help for Heroes charity created to provide support for military personnel returning from conflicts in the Middle East. This has captured the hearts of the nation who recognise the sacrifice and struggle not only of the military themselves, but that of their families and loved ones. Sitting by the hospital bed of a 20 year old multiple amputee, gun shot victim or IED survivor requires a degree of heroic strength in itself.

“Our Ladies are not only facing the challenges of the English Channel, but securing sponsorship from friends, businesses, colleagues, relatives – NO ONE is spared a tap on the shoulder from one of our bright blue shirts! Excitement is mounting and enthusiasm growing for the 29th May. We just can’t know whether the weather will be supporting us as well!”

A total of 10 boats will depart from Lymington early 29 May and set off through Hurst Narrows. The fleet will include Aquarius Ventures, Laurella Jo, Ear to Eternity, Nooka, White Heather, Nellie of Hythe, bluQube, Ellie, Crossjack VI and Molly II. The organisers anticipate arrival in Cherbourg at 1600h, in time for a celebratory pontoon drink and dinner later. In case of foul weather a route is planned to sail out of Lymington, take the Nab Tower to port and return to Southampton, Ocean Village. This should cover the same distance as a Channel crossing but in more protected waters.

Donations can be made through Just Giving via a direct link at www.ladieswholaunch.org.uk

Further information is available at www.ladieswholaunch.org.uk or email ladieswholaunch@live.co.uk.

-ends-

Editor’s notes:

About Ladies who Launch

Ladies who Launch was inspired by the brave women who take to the seas, both solo and as part of a crew. Ellen McArthur, Dee Caffari and Helen Tew have shown that women can hold their own against competitors as well as the elements. Many other women support their clubs, partners, and families in a range of nautical activities at a variety of levels. Ladies who Launch celebrates what women contribute to sailing.

Our launch was inspired by a stalwart female member who, when asked to parachute out of a plane for charity, said she’d prefer to cross the channel in her yacht, so she did. In June 2002, 5 yachts belonging to members of the Royal Southampton Yacht Club with all female crews crossed from Lymington to Cherbourg raising £17,000 in sponsorship for Leukaemia Busters.

In 2010, Ladies who Launch re-launched, this time for Help for Heroes. The official Launch will was introduced at a dinner at the RSYC on Friday 19th February, with speakers including Dee Caffari to inspire and to galvanise skippers to raise crews, and find owners to provide boats for a channel crossing on May 29 2010.

About Symmetry:

Established in 1996, Symmetry is a software company that specialises in the development and supply of business-to-business financial solutions within the UK. The company’s core product, bluQube, is a fully integrated financial and management accounting solution aimed at organisations ranging in size from £3M turnover to £250M turnover and with user populations from 2 to 800+ users. www.bluqube.co.uk


Press Contact: Jane Moores/Sally Minchin TTA Communications, 01225 580214. E-mail: jmoores@ttauk.com
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