Freighters set sail in Friesland
The annual skûtsje competition has started on the lakes of the northern Dutch province of Friesland.
A skûtsje is a flat-bottomed sailing boat built for transporting freight in the shallow inland waters of the Netherlands. In use throughout the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries, they were rendered obsolete by the arrival of road transport. However, sailing competitions with the boats have never gone out of fashion and, in the last few years, have become increasingly popular.
Weather permitting, the Friesland competition will last 14 days. During this time, 14 skûtsjes will take part in 11 stages. More than 150,000 spectators are expected to watch from the lakes’ shores.
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