Arrecife (Lanzarote), 29th November 2017
The record fleet in the RORC Transatlantic Race (1st leg of the westbound Atlantic Anniversary Regatta) have been at sea for five days now, and all of the 22 yachts still racing have turned their bows south towards Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina on the spice island of Grenada.
The majority of the fleet have yet to cross a long ridge of high pressure extending from the Canary Islands across the Atlantic to reach the northeast tradewinds. Over the next day or so, one of the biggest tactical decisions will play out in the 3,000 mile offshore race; crossing this area of light winds as quickly as possible will be richly rewarded. Leaders are beginning to emerge in the relative classes and the line honours leader, CQS has a virtual opponent to contend with.
In the early hours of day 5, Eric de Turckheim's French Nivelt Muratet 54 Teasing Machine and Bo Teichmann & Thomas Jungblut's German Elliott 52 Outsider were the first to alter course south to cross the ITCZ. In the leading Maxis, Jochen Bovenkamp's Marten 72 Aragon was the first to dive south, followed by Canadian Southern Wind Sorceress, skippered by Daniel Stump.
At 0800 UTC on Wednesday, Sorceress was the closest yacht to the finish, 2,092 nautical miles from Grenada. However, Ludde Ingvall's Australian 98ft Maxi CQS, which had made the decision to go south after rounding Tenerife, was fully into the tradewinds with a VMG of over 10 knots, compared to Aragon's VMG of just over six knots. Keen observers of the race will note that a new 'virtual competitor' has been added to the YB Tracker. The 'ghost' of Nomad IV's track in 2015, which represents the challenge to CQS to set a new monohull course record. CQS virtually passed Nomad IV in the early hours of day five.
The YB trackers estimate the positions of the yachts on handicap, based upon its distance from the finish, and its average speed from the start and distance sailed over the last 24 hours. It currently has Teasing Machine leading overall under IRC rating. Outsider is second overall and Aragon third. In IRC One, Bjoern Woge's German JV53 Broader View Hamburg is leading the class and Richard Palmer's British JPK 10.10 Jangada leads IRC Two and the Two Handed class. In the Class40s, Berthold & Tobias Brinkmann's MarieJo was the first to turn south. Mathias Mueller von Blumencron's Red still leads by 26 miles, but the move by MarieJo looks to have paid off.
Andrews 56, Haspa Hamburg and Broader View Hamburg are owned by Hamburgischer Verein Seefahrt (HVS). Established in 1903, the HVS encourages young sailors to race offshore. Haspa Hamburg's skipper is 20-year old Max Gärtner and the navigator and watch captains are all in their 20's. Haspa Hamburg's blog tells the story from on board:
"The race tracker is fascinating as some teams have already tacked and are now heading south; others seem to hesitate to make that move. We have been sailing upwind for 36 hours now and trying to figure out when the time has come for us tactically to go straight for Grenada. In the starlit nights, single squalls eventually come through forcing us to reef and keep us focussed. The spirit on board is pretty good but we are all hoping for a sudden wind shift to run downwind to the Caribbean - that was our plan."
Gerald Bibot racing his Belgian Catamaran Zed 6 sent a philosophical message to the race blog. Gerald suggested a northerly route would pay before the start, as it had done in his last race in 2015.
"Somebody told me, gentlemen always sail to windward. I guess we're no gentlemen. I'll live with that. Well if that was just it, that'd be wonderful! We had some issues with electrical/IT stuff. Good news, the fridge is not down; the worst has been avoided. Our north route has not paid off yet. I guess this year has nothing in common with the 2015 edition. We still have to cross the ridge; we'll take it an alternate way."
Jens Kellinghusen's German Ker 56 Varuna has retired and has now returned to Marina Lanzarote; all crew are safe and well.
(Race Report: Louay Habib)
Follow the fleet and watch the 2017 RORC Transatlantic Race unfold:
YB Race Tracker: http://rorctransatlantic.rorc.org/tracking/2017-fleet-tracking.html
Individual yachts, classes or the whole fleet can be tracked throughout the race
Social media - How to follow the race:-
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Atlantic Anniversary Regatta: #AAR
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Trish Jenkins - Press Officer
RORC Transatlantic Race
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RORC RACE ENQUIRIES:
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THE RORC TRANSATLANTIC RACE:
THE ATLANTIC ANNIVERSARY REGATTA:
The westbound leg of the celebratory Atlantic Anniversary Regatta incorporates the 4th edition of the RORC Transatlantic Race, an annual race organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club in association with the International Maxi Association (IMA) http://www.internationalmaxiassociation.com
The fleet will depart from Marina Lanzarote on Saturday 25th November 2017 and the 2,995 nautical mile race runs through the Canary Islands before crossing the Atlantic to arrive at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina in Grenada
Established in 1925, The Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC) became famous for the biennial Fastnet Race and the international team event, the Admiral's Cup. It organises an annual series of domestic offshore races from its base in Cowes as well as inshore regattas including the RORC Easter Challenge and IRC National Championship in the Solent
The club is based in St James' Place, London, but after a merger with The Royal Corinthian Yacht Club in Cowes, now boasts a superb clubhouse facility at the entrance to Cowes Harbour and a membership of over 4000
Race minisite: http://rorctransatlantic.rorc.org/
RORC website: www.rorc.org
Twitter: #rorctransatlanticrace @RORCracing
The AAR is a celebration of the jubilees of two of the most highly regarded sailing clubs in the world - the Norddeutscher Regatta Verein (NRV) from Hamburg (150th anniversary) and the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) from Sardinia (50th anniversary)
It is an extraordinary series of events spanning a 9-month period between November 2017 and July 2018, connecting Grenada and Bermuda with the vibrant maritime metropolis of Hamburg
Starts: Westbound (Lanzarote - Grenada) - Saturday 25th November 2017, Eastbound (Bermuda - Hamburg) - Saturday 7th July 2018
It is the first regatta series to cross the Atlantic ocean twice, in both directions
The regatta is supported by: The Royal Ocean Racing Club; Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, International Maxi Class Association, Segler-Vereinigung Cuxhaven.
The RORC has also been a leader in yacht handicap systems and in co-operation with the French offshore racing club, UNCL, created IRC - the principal yacht measurement system for the rating of racing yachts worldwide
The Spinlock IRC rating rule is administered jointly by the RORC Rating Office in Lymington, UK and UNCL Centre de Calcul in Paris, France
The RORC Rating Office is the technical hub of the Royal Ocean Racing Club and recognised globally as a centre of excellence for measurement. For Spinlock IRC rating information in the UK please see: www.rorcrating.com and for IRC rating globally www.ircrating.org
Social media: www.facebook.com/rorcratingwww.facebook.com/ircrating
Twitter @RORCrating @IRCrating
THE INTERNATIONAL MAXI ASSOCIATION (IMA):
The International Maxi Association (IMA) represents owners of Maxi yachts worldwide
Recognised in 2010 as the World Sailing international class of Maxi yachts, the IMA has the exclusive right to organise World championships for Maxi yachts. The current President of the IMA is Thomas Bscher, the Secretary General is Andrew McIrvine, also Admiral of the Royal Ocean Racing Club
The IMA has been closely associated with the RORC Transatlantic Race since its inception. The IMA is registered in Geneva, has a base in Porto Cervo and an office in the UK, for rating and technical matters. It has two affiliated classes (Maxi 72s, and J Class) and one associated class (Wally Class). The IMA's function is to 'guide, structure and encourage maxi yacht racing worldwide
The IMA rule defines and categorises maxi yachts: it aims to embrace all maxi yachts and encourage any development that has a positive effect on the construction and performance of maxi yachts'
Calero Marinas has developed and manages three marinas in the Canary Islands, having accrued over 35 years' experience in the sector. The Canaries' warm climate and regular supply of breeze has lead Lanzarote to become a favourite training ground for offshore race teams, whilst the combination of good flight connections and easily available services has created a popular and reliable base for international sailors
Marina Lanzarote is the newest addition to the group with secure berthing for vessels of up to 60m LOA, a wide range of services and the advantage of having the city and maritime quarter within a few minutes' walk
The shipyard is equipped to hoist superyachts and the inclusion of deep keel pits in the yard's design was considered especially to meet the needs of transoceanic racing yachts
Other social media handles: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Canary.Islands.Tourism
#CanaryIslands, Twitter: @CanaryIslandsEN, #CanaryIslands, Instagram: theCanaryIslands - #CanaryIslands. Lanzarote: FB: @Visit Lanzarote -# Lanzarote, Twitter: @TurismoLZT - #Lanzarote, Instagram : turismolzt - #Lanzarote. Arrecife: @Turismo Arrecife, Real Club Náutico de Arrecife: https://www.facebook.com/rcna.info, @rcna.info
CAMPER & NICHOLSONS MARINAS:
Camper & Nicholsons Marinas is widely recognised to be one of the world's oldest and most prestigious yachting business names, with origins dating back to 1782
The company has specialised in marina and waterfront development for over 40 years and has provided services to clients in more than 25 countries worldwide. Projects range from small marinas through to developments of over 500 hectares
Camper & Nicholsons Marinas Ltd is a wholly owned subsidiary of Camper & Nicholsons Marina Investments Limited, listed on the AIM of the London Stock Exchange. Camper & Nicholsons Marinas currently operate marinas in Grenada, Italy, Malta, Cyprus, Turkey and the UK, with over 30 new projects currently under way all over the world
Owned and managed by Camper & Nicholsons Marinas, Port Louis Marina has transformed Grenada's yachting facilities. Overlooking the historic capital St Georges and designed to reflect the traditional Creole architecture, the marina offers 159 berths, including 30 superyacht berths for vessels from 25m to 90m LOA, and up to 6m draft
For more information about Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina visit: www.cnmarinas.com/plm
GRENADA TOURISM AUTHORITY:
The premium yachting destination in the southern Caribbean, Grenada and its sister islands of Carriacou and Petite Martinique are widely considered to be the most unspoiled cruising grounds in the Caribbean. Famed for its people's warm and gregarious hospitality Pure Grenada, the Spice of the Caribbean has a varied topography of mountains, rainforests and waterfalls, fringed by icing sugar beaches and cooled by trade winds.