meets future:
a 200 kilometer race through 11 cities of Fryslân,
fuelled by
the sun


The Young Solar Challenge is an initiative that started in 2014. This initiative aims at bringing together young people (14-17 year) with technology, innovation and sustainability via a yearly series of solar boat races. For this a dedicated solar boat was developed that could be built at schools.  

With the experience gained so far we think that the Young Solar Boat teams are up for the challenge of sailing the route of the 200 kilometer iconic “Elfstedentocht” (Eleven Cities Tour). This “Elfstedentocht” is an ancient route that used to be skated in the times winter was at its coldest and all canals and lakes in the country were frozen over. Only the fittest of men and women were able to complete this tour. With the warming of the planet the chances for this skating tour to happen ever again are diminishing. The last time the race was held was almost 25 years (1997) ago. 

However, the challenge of completing such a monumental tour remains. July 2020 a team has investigated the possibilities to sail this route with a Young Solar Challenge Class boat. As the result of that, the organisation has given the go-ahead for such an event in the late spring/summer of 2022. A dedicated new Young Solar boat is being developed to even better meet the challenge. With the newly developed boat the Young Solar Boat teams should be able to successfully sail this route. This event will take place over a period of five days spread over two weeks.

The dates:
Young Solar Class: t.b.a 2025
Apprentice & Master Class:
t.b.a 2025

In addition to the invitation of the Young Solar Boat teams, the organisation also would like to invite other solar boat teams to take part in the event. To make the challenge to sail the route a true challenge the other teams will be sailing the route over a three day period. These teams will be able to compete in two classes. This will also be the opportunity to set a World Record for the sailing time of the route. For the time being we will reserve a capacity for 30 non-Young Solar Boats Class to participate.

The years that The Ultimate Solar Boat Challenge will take place are: 2022 (done!)/ 2025 / 2028 / 2031 / 2034. 

The Technical Regulation file can be find below:
Technical regulations 2022 Version March 22nd

The Race Elements file can be find below:
Race Elements 2022 Version April 22nd


2025 Registration information 


Refund overview after 1st of April

between April 1st 2022 – up until April 16th 2022 50% refund

between April 16th 2022 – up until May 1st 2022 25% refund

after May 1st 2022 0% refund



The daily distances for the Young Solar Challenge Class are as follows:

Day one.

Leeuwarden – Sloten

Day two.

Sloten – Workum

Day three.

Workum – Franeker

Day four.

Franeker – Dokkum

Day Five.

Dokkum – Leeuwarden


The daily distances for the Apprentice & Master Class are as follows:

Day one.

Leeuwarden – Stavoren

Day two.

Stavoren – Franeker

Day three.

Franeker – Leeuwarden

additional info

After the finish of timing in Leeuwarden there will be an additional ceremonial sailing of 4 km into the historic city centre of the city of Leeuwarden.

As we would like to give all who want to join this unique challenge the opportunity to participate, we decided to open the event, besides the Young Solar Class, for 2 other classes; Apprentice class boats and Master Class boats. Below you can find the final details of these classes:

Young Solar Class:
One design class -> specifications can be found on the website of Young Solar Challenge. 

Apprentice Class Boats:
Solar cells: 6.000 m^2 (Silicon type solar cells, for other types consult the technical regulations)
Battery: maximum capacity 1.50 kWh, Maximum system voltage 60 VDC

Master Class Boats:
Solar cells: 9.200 m^2 (Silicon type solar cells, for other types consult the technical regulations)
Battery: maximum capacity 1.50 kWh, Maximum system voltage 60 VDC

All boats have to comply with the 2021/ 2022 Technical Regulations for Solar Boats.

In addition to compliance with the technical regulations there will be a couple of additional simple ground rules to be taken into account.
These are the following:

    • We expect good sportsmanship; good sportsmanship means being fair, and ethical to those you’re playing with—have respect to both your teammates and your opponents—and is especially crucial for young athletes to learn.
    • You must be able to take care of the road transport of your boat to and from the start and finish locations yourself.
    • Since the route is long and often not easy accessible by road you must also be prepared for cases the boats fails. It is not very likely that in case of a failure we will be able to tow your boat to a nearby slipway. You must be prepared for that.
    • This last rule is a rule that comes from the original ice skating eleven cities tour. Because of the legacy, we keep it in our rules as well. Once you have missed a time limit you can no longer take part in the event. Thus a failure to meet an (intermediate) time finish on day 1 will mean you can no longer take part on days 2 and 3 apart from the ceremonial sailing on day 3. This means reliability of your boat and team performance in solving issues that may occur will become key for a successful participation.

Up for a challenge?