YOUNGSTER Lawrence Quach will take to the waves alongside round-the-world yachtswoman Dame Ellen MacArthur in the J.P. Morgan Asset Management Round the Island Race next Saturday,
The 17-year-old will be amongst 25 young people from the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust competing in this year’s race – a 50 mile sailing sprint around the Isle of Wight.
Trust patron MacArthur will take to the water along with Quach and race first-timer, Radio One DJ Rob da Bank, on board the four boats entered by the Trust this year.
They will be competing against 1,700 other boats in the famous race, which has become Britain’s third largest sporting participation event.
Quach was just 13-year-old when he was first diagnosed with leukaemia and underwent intensive treatment at Oxford Children’s Hospital.
After completing treatment in 2011, he began sailing with the Trust and has had the opportunity to participate in a number of activities, including a long weekend sailing trip.
He explains: “The Trust has given me a love for sailing, I’ve made lots of new friendships with likeminded people, it’s great being with people who understand what it’s like to have cancer – we have loads of fun.
“I have learnt lots of new skills from the Trust, including the many knots needed for sailing. I’m looking forward to getting back out on the sea, meeting new people and learning more.”
Quach has high hopes for the future and is aiming to complete a number of sailing qualifications this year, including his competent crew certificate which will enable him to crew on an even wider range of boats.
You can support him in his fundraising efforts through the Trust’s ‘Buy a Mile’ initiative – a virtual race online. Choose the young person you would like to support and you can buy a mile of the race from as little as £10, with every mile bought moving your chosen yacht a step closer to the finish line on a virtual map of the Isle of Wight.
The Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust takes young people aged 8-24 who are recovering from cancer on sailing trips throughout the summer.
The trips can rebuild the confidence that is often lost through long periods in hospital, giving the young people a chance to test themselves in a safe and supportive environment. For more see www.ellenmacarthurcancertrust.org