SIBS latest: Bentley sponsors & new attractions on the bill

This year’s Southampton International Boat Show has a new dedicated watersports zone, packed with all the latest products from stand up paddleboards to inflatable kayaks, windsurfers, wakeboards, and all the clothing kit and accessories to go with them. 

“The brand-new watersports zone packs everything into one exciting and vibrant location within the show,” says British Marine’s CEO Lesley Robinson, “and offers a great chance for people to come and have a go for free with a windsurfing simulator and dive tank.”

The show is also increasing the on-water opportunities for visitors. Robinson says: “We know that visitors really enjoy actually getting out on the water so this year the team has worked really hard to increase capacity by almost 30 per cent, so there are over 14,000 opportunities to get afloat.

“Alongside coming to buy the very latest boats, products and services from the hundreds of exhibitors, the Southampton International Boat Show and its partners are working together to enable visitors, no matter what age or ability, to get out on the water and experience a wide variety of craft through our Get-A-Float, Try-A-Boat, Try-A-Boat+ attractions including the Tall Ship Morgenster and Island Scene passenger boat.”

Earlier this week, the show organisers also confirmed Bentley Motors as the exclusive luxury automotive partner at this year’s boat show. Bentley will be showcasing three of its newest models, including the Bacalar, ‘the most exclusive and bespoke Bentley of the modern era’.

Among those exhibiting in SIBS’ new watersports zone, Paqualife will be making its debut at the event with its range of packrafts. 

Paqualife director Gina Locke says, “We are extremely excited to exhibit our range of products on the Southampton International Boat Show. Packrafting is a relatively new concept in the UK and we are keen to show people how packrafts can revolutionise the way you get out on the water and experience the great outdoors.”

For watersports enthusiasts, foiling is the newest trend which has “rejuvenated and electrified watersports immeasurably” says Chris Tris, from The Official Test Centre (OTC), who will be helping hundreds of visitors to have a go at windsurfing on the land-based simulator in the heart of the watersports zone at the show. 

“From prone-surfing to The America’s Cup, from windsurfing to dinghy sailing and stand up paddling, every watersport corner and facet is at it, and it’s breathing life into completely new watersports such as wing-surfing and e-foiling” he adds.  The team from the Official Test Centre (OTC) will be on hand to talk all about foiling, and exhibiting some of the pioneering brands including Fliteboard, Armstrong and PPC. 

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