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Bear Grylls among star-studded line-up for Kate and William’s charity regatta

Bear Grylls is among the competitors (Olivia Harris/PA)
Bear Grylls is among the competitors (Olivia Harris/PA)

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will compete against a host of celebrities, including stand-up John Bishop and adventurer Bear Grylls, when they go head-to-head in a charity yachting regatta.

William and Kate will each skipper their own yacht and will be joined on the water by the six celebrity captains as the eight vessels compete for the historic King’s Cup.

The yachts will represent causes supported by the duke and duchess and will race on August 9 on waters around Cowes on the Isle of Wight.

William will compete on behalf of Child Bereavement UK, England Women’s footballer Fara Williams represents Centrepoint, television presenter Dan Snow will race for London’s Air Ambulance Charity’s 30th anniversary campaign and Grylls will skipper a yacht for wildlife conservation organisation Tusk.

Kate has chosen four of her patronages and will compete on behalf of the Royal Foundation, in connection with her work on the early years development of children.

Bishop will compete for Action on Addiction, BBC presenter Katie Thistleton for Place2Be, and Olympic champion rower Helen Glover for the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families.

The winning team will be awarded the King’s Cup, a trophy first presented by King George V at Cowes’ Royal Yacht Squadron in 1920.

William and Kate hope the King’s Cup regatta will become an annual event, bringing greater awareness to the benefits of sport, while also raising support and funds for their causes.

The event will also give the couple the chance to renew their sporting rivalry.

The Duchess of Cambridge is hugged by the Duke of Cambridge after a boat race across a lake on Prince Edward Island, eastern Canada
Kate is hugged by William after a boat race in Canada (John Stillwell/PA)

The duke trounced his wife when they competed in a dragon boat race in Canada in 2011, but Kate got her revenge three years later when she won a sailing event in Auckland during their tour of New Zealand.

William took the honours again during a visit to the German city of Heidelberg in 2017, when he was victorious in a riverboat race against his wife.

Members of the public can watch the race from the SailGP Race Village along the Cowes foreshore, which is free to access and will include an 800-seater grandstand.

Footage from the race will play on screens across the town and there will be a number of family-friendly activities and exhibits to promote sailing around the event, including initiatives and programmes for children and young people.

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