News Ideal conditions for the start of the RORC Transatlantic Race

Ideal conditions for the start of the RORC Transatlantic Race

Arrecife, Lanzarote, 26 November 2016

The 3rd edition of the RORC Transatlantic Race started without a hitch in ideal conditions outside Marina Lanzarote. With a gentle breeze and slight sea state, it was a comfortable start to the 2,865 nautical mile ocean race to Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina in Grenada, West Indies. The three fastest yachts have chosen to head north of the rhumb line. Once they have rounded Tenerife, the decision to continue north or dive south will become clear.

RORC CEO, Eddie Warden Owen watched the fleet depart: "It's fantastic to see the fleet taking off on the way to Grenada from Lanzarote. The wind is blowing from the north at about 10 knots and they're reaching across the starting line. We have got a huge variety of boats; fabulous boats of 100ft and more, like Leopard and Path, to Class40s and of course the amazing multihulls, Maserati and Phaedo that will be having a match race all the way across the Atlantic. I am delighted to say we have an increase in entry every year and we know that this race will grow over a period of time. The quality of the boats and the variety shows that the RORC Transatlantic Race is going to be popular with a lot of racing teams."

The monohulls were first off, racing for the IMA Line Honours Trophy and the RORC Transatlantic Trophy for the best corrected time under IRC. Giles Redpath's Lombard IRC46, Pata Negra and Swan 82, Stay Calm got away well. However, Mike Slade's powerful Farr 100, Leopard 3 was up to speed very quickly and held a lead of over a mile on Stay Calm by the turning mark at Puerto Calero.

Once Leopard cleared the gap between Lanzarote and Fuerteventura, the powerful Maxi turned at right angles to the course and headed north for over two hours. If they continue on this northerly route, the crew will be in full foul weather gear hiking out on the rail and ready to hanker down for a rough ride to come. Leopard's tactics may be to hook into a low pressure system predicted to develop further up the track. Making the low pressure system at the right time will be a huge factor for Leopard. If the connection is right, Slade's team will slingshot south. If they are too late, brutal headwinds and a significant adverse sea state may result. Some weather models are also showing the chance of a secondary low, which would magnify the conditions exponentially.

The MOD 70 duel between Lloyd Thornburg's American Phaedo3, lining up against Giovanni Soldini's Italian Maserati looks like developing into a tough and brutal race. The two multihulls crossed the line in unison, with Phaedo taking the windward side. Maserati tacked away and continued for some distance, looking to get into better pressure. However, it didn't materialise and Phaedo3 made the Puerto Calero mark well in front. Phaedo3 had won the start, but there is a long way to go in the battle of the MOD70s. Three hours into the race, Phaedo3 had opened up a two-mile lead on Maserati. Both looked to be heading north of the rhumb line; time will tell whether this is the chosen route. The two MODs should be able to push through a light patch of ocean predicted to open up in front of them and make fresh pressure in the next few days. If they turn north, the conditions could get very tasty indeed, as there is little escape for the crew on a MOD70 in wind and waves.

Halvard Mabire & Miranda Merron's Campagne de France leads the Class40s but only just; Catherine Pourre's Eärendil is just behind. It is very early to look at the overall leader under IRC, however, Swan 82 Stay Calm has been very impressive in the early part of the race.

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How to follow the third RORC Transatlantic Race:

Tracking the fleet:
All yachts are fitted with YB Trackers. To follow the yachts as they race across the Atlantic visit:

Race website:
Teams with satellite connection will be blogging stories, pictures and video telling the story of their race on the official race minsite:

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Race Records:

    The winner of the RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy for best elapsed time under IRC in 2015 was Jean-Paul Riviere's 100ft Finot-Conq
    Nomad IV also won IRC overall and the IMA Trophy for monohull line honours. Nomad IV also set a new monohull record for the RORC Transatlantic Race: 10 days 07 hours 06 minutes and 59 seconds
    Multihull Record: 5 days 22 hours 46 minutes 03 secondsLloyd Thornburg's MOD70, Phaedo3 was the first boat to arrive in the last race and set the multihull record for the race
    Class40: 12 days 12 hours 36 minutes 32 seconds: Gonzalo Botin's Spanish Class40, Tales II was the first Class40 to complete the race in 2015, setting a Class40 record


    RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy (IRC overall)
    IMA Transatlantic Trophy (line honours monohull)
    A new RORC Caribbean Series Trophy (best combined result in the RORC Transatlantic Race + 2017 RORC Caribbean 600)

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    The third RORC Transatlantic Race starts in Lanzarote on Saturday 26th November 2016 and the 2,865 nautical mile race runs through the Canary Islands before crossing the Atlantic to arrive in Grenada
    The race is run in association with the International Maxi Association (IMA)


    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 such as the RORC Easter Challenge and IRC National Championships in the Solent
    The RORC works with other yacht clubs to promote their offshore races and provides marketing and organisational support. The RORC Caribbean 600 based in Antigua and the first offshore race in the Caribbean was an instant success, and in 2014 RORC extended its organisational expertise by creating the new RORC Transatlantic Race from Lanzarote to Grenada in November
    The club is based in St James' Place, London and Cowes, Isle of Wight
    In co-operation with the French offshore racing club, UNCL, RORC is responsible for IRC, the principal international handicap system for yacht racing 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:
    Follow us on Facebook and Twitter:  #rorcrtr #rorcracing


    The racing activities for the Maxi as a separate class started in Porto Cervo in 1980 with the first Maxi Yacht Cup. Immediately afterwards an association of the Maxi owners was founded under the name "International Class A Yacht Association" (ICAYA) with Baron E. de Rothschild elected the first President of the Class. The legal office was created in Geneva, Switzerland. "Class A" was the definition of a Maxi boat in the IOR rating system in force at that time. The following year Gianfranco Alberini was appointed first Secretary General of the Association. ICAYA organized the Maxi Yacht World Championship for many years in Porto Cervo as its European base, as well in other venues in USA - Honolulu, Newport R.I., Miami, St. Thomas, San Francisco. In Europe Puerto Portales, Antibes and Saint Tropez were selected as championship locations
    When the definition "Class A" disappeared with the change from IOR it was decided to rename the Class as "International Maxi Association" (IMA). The Class is now registered in Geneva (Switzerland), has a base in Porto Cervo and an office in the USA, for rating and technical matters. The Class is now expanding its activities, and in 2010 the first Mini Maxi World Championship took place in September in Porto Cervo, Italy,  In 2011 the new Rolex Volcano Race opened the Mediterranean sailing season
    Andrew McIrvine took over as Secretary General in 2013. In 2014 the pure racer Mini Maxis were reformed into the Maxi 72 Class. The IMA has organised previous Maxi Transatlantic races but this is the first in association with RORC. IMA has presented a vintage trophy for line honours for this new race
    IMA is a recognized member of the IRC Congress. Since November 2010 ISAF has recognised the Maxis as an international class. This means that the International Maxi Association is now the sole authority with the right to hold World and Continental Maxi Championships


    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



    The premium yachting destination in the Southern Caribbean. Grenada and The Grenadines are widely considered to be the most unspoilt cruising grounds in the Caribbean. Famed for its people's warm and gregarious hospitality the 'Spice Island' of Grenada has a varied topography of mountains, rainforests and waterfalls, fringed by icing sugar beaches and cooled by trade winds


    Camper & Nicholsons 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 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 170 berths, including 30 superyacht berths for vessels from 25m to 90m LOA, and up to 7m draft
    For more information about Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina

Trish Jenkins - RORC Transatlantic Race

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