Great Cumbrae Kayak Race

1 Day

Age 12+

Now in its 4th year “The Great Cumbrae Kayak Race” promises to be a great day of fun and challenge. The race takes place on Saturday August 18th with categories and prizes for individuals and teams in Performance Boats, Touring Boats, Junior Racers and a Team Trophy.

The Course

Covering a distance of nearly 19km’s the race circumnavigates the beautiful island of Great Cumbrae which offers spectacular views of the Island of Bute and Island of Arran beyond. In 2017 we ran the race in a counter clockwise direction and racers had challenging yet rewarding conditions. The challenge of getting around the island was made easier with the knowledge that our team of safety marshals were on hand, giving support along the way where needed. Yet a big draw to the race is the ruggedness and remoteness and the challenge of the route.


For the 2018 race we have chosen to separate the Performance Boats from the Touring Boats with a plan to stagger the starting guns for each race. This change in format fits with other sea kayak races in Scotland and goes some way in making the race more inclusive for different types of boats. It will give the Touring Boats clear water ahead (at least for as long as they can muster) and gives the Performance Boats the challenge of catching up with paddlers ahead. In addition to this we will run a Junior Race encouraging participation by younger paddlers during this Year of Young People. Prizes will be awarded for each category; Performance Racers, Touring Racers, Junior Racers.

Team Challenge

New for the 2018 race is a team trophy, which will be awarded to a team of 3 paddlers who complete the race by paddling the course together. This new category is included to encourage paddlers who may be a little daunted by the thought of circumnavigating Great Cumbrae solo.

Training Day

We are planning on delivering a sea kayak racers training day on Friday 17th August, where we will have top coaches giving tips and advice on how to get the most out of your kayak and how to stay safe on the challenge of circumnavigating the island.

This training day includes a lunch and free camping and allows free entry into the race the following day.

Equipment and Kit Information
Daily Schedule