by Godfrey Cray
Rapparee Crew. From left;Godfrey Cray, Steve Wilson,Dominic Gundry, Jordan Wilson, Sam Cray, Conrad Gundry, Simon Gundry. - ARC Trans Atlantic Race
The 1999 Greg Elliot designed 53 footer owned and skippered by Steve Wilson crossed the line in St Lucia early on December 6th to take line honors and a divisional handicap win in the 158 entry fleet.
Onboard with Wilson was his son Jordan (18) Simon Gundry with his sons; Conrad (20) , Dominic (18) and Godfrey Cray with his son Sam of 18 years.
Valencia based renowned mast designer Steve Wilson acquired Rapparee 3 years ago with the intention of giving his sons and his Whitbread and America Cup sailing mates and their sons an introduction to ocean racing.
Rapparee Crew at Finish. From Left; Jordan Wilson, Steve Wilson, Conrad Gundry, Dominic Gundry, Simon Gundry, Godfrey Cray, Sam Cray. - ARC Trans Atlantic Race
The whole race went really well for all on board. 13.5 days and 3000 nm of down wind sailing in mostly fresh trade winds of around 20-30 knots. With a gennakers up for 11.5 days there was plenty on especially at night. We managed to blow one gennaker out and trawl another when the halyard let go.
It was great to watch the four sons develop trimming and steering skills over the course of the race.
In a busy fast passed world it is a rare opportunity a real pleasure to spend two weeks with your son, mates and their sons on a 3000 mile ocean race.
Pitons St Lucia - ARC Trans Atlantic Race
Rapparee Trade wind sailing - ARC Trans Atlantic Race