$250k raised at Bart's first charity event
THE first fundraising event for a foundation set up in memory of Sherborne Olympic sailor Andrew Simpson raised $250,000.
Items were auctioned at The Andrew Simpson America's Cup Dinner in San Francisco earlier this month to raise money for the foundation, set up after the tragic death of Mr Simpson.
Nicknamed Bart, he lost his life in a training accident at San Francisco Bay in May.
His foundation was started by Sir Ben Ainslie, Iain Percy and Mr Simpson's wife, Leah.
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It will work to honour his life and legacy by encouraging youngsters into sailing. At grassroots level it will encourage children to visit their local sailing clubs and try the sport by providing equipment and coaching.
On the foundation's website, a statement said: "There has been a great deal of hard work from many of Andrews friends and family to get the foundation up and sailing.
"The trustees would like to thank everyone involved in this fantastic achievement."
Mr Percy took to social networking site, Twitter after the auction and said: "So proud of the team for putting on such a fantastic event"
The lots auctioned included a guitar signed by the Kings of Leon, a signed bike used in the 2012 Tour de France by race winner Sir Bradley Wiggins, and the services of sailors Sir Ben and Mr Percy for a regatta.
It is hoped the young people who get involved with the foundation will go on to compete at major international events as members of the "Bart squad".
The first trial of the mentoring programme will be organised close to Sherborne, according to its founders.
For more information visit www.andrewsimpsonsailing. org