Please select your home edition
Edition
Ancasta Ker 40+ 728x90

Atlantic Rally for Cruisers - Vaquita claims line honours

by Jeremy Wyatt on 8 Dec 2012
Vaquita, Akilaria 40 (Austria) claims line honours in the 2012 Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC) © Tim Wright / Photoaction.com http://www.photoaction.com
At the tail end of a journey of more than 3,300 nautical males, Class 40 Vaquita has taken line honours in the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC) 2012, having sailed from Gran Canaria in just over twelve days; a truly magnificent performance for a 40 footer. Vaquita looked superb as she blasted across the finish line at 14 knots with the crew pushing the boat as hard as ever in front of the local and international media in Rodney Bay, Saint Lucia, today (07 December). The Austrian crew of six crossed the line at 10:22 local (14:22UTC) on 7 December 2012, giving them an elapsed time of 12 days, 1:37hours.

Once across the line and sails down, the entire crew dived into the warm Caribbean water to celebrate their success, to the delight of those cheering from the spectator boats alongside.

Vaquita, skippered by Austrian Andreas Hanakamp, former Team Russia Volvo Ocean Race skipper and two time Olympic star, sailed an extreme northerly route from Gran Canaria, clocking speeds of up to 25 knots during the crossing. This is Andreas' third consecutive year racing in the ARC, each time favouring the northerly passage, and each time paying off.

Speaking to him on the dock with a cold rum punch in hand, he explained how they had a great trip, and are happy to be in Saint Lucia again. This will be the final Atlantic crossing Andreas sails on board Vaquita, as he has plans to build a new Class 40' and will put Vaquita up for sale. When talking about the northerly passage taken, he explained how it makes perfect sense for him to take the route they did. He feels the northern route is the more logical with the availability of modern weather and routing information.

Vaquita has not only crossed the finish line first, but has done so in style, with the next arrival, Swan 80' Berenice approximately 20 hours behind. This does not mean that Vaquita is guaranteed to win overall on corrected time, as she holds the highest handicap in the RORC IRC Racing Division.


Meanwhile., the cruisers, which make up the majority of the ARC fleet are getting some very mixed weather on the rhumb line route where the wind has be rather contrary ... too much at the beginning and now not enough! Logs in week one were full of tales of watches spent wearing foul-weather jackets, cold nights and rain; lots of rain.

The winds have abating and calmer seas are now the norm, especially for those boats leading the fleet. On Surfing Petrel, one of the racing fleet, Miranda wrote 'Not an isobar to be seen for hundreds of miles on the synoptic chart. Light and fluky breeze on the menu for the next day or so. There are a few large clouds around, but we have been left in peace so far today. It's quiet in the midday heat, the crew keeping movement to a minimum, and occupying patches of shade.'

Whilst the racers are becoming frustrated, for the cruisers the lighter conditions mean an easier and more relaxing life at sea. Dan Bower, captain of Skyelark of London wrote in his blog 'We have just set full main and cutter rig, all plain sail, for the first time since we set off, and the first time we have seen true wind under 20kts. The first week saw average F6-7, 25-30kts wind and we had several spells of 30-35kts, F8; two-reefs in the main by day, and three at night. Whilst not uncomfortable, we all welcome the smoother seas and the ability to move about with just a steadying hand instead of having to lurch around with a vice-like grip on something solid.'

As can be expected, strong winds, particularly early on in the passage often result in breakages aboard the fleet. Farr 585CC Spock has had to retire to the Cape Verde islands following a dismasting; all now safe ashore in Mindello. Dag Rorslett and his Norwegian crew of four aboard Modus Vivendi, have had a tough few days coping with a lost rudder. For the past four days, the crew have been steering the 50ft steel yacht using just their small Hydrovane rudder and balancing sails. Not an easy feat in F6 and 4m swells constantly pushing the boat sideways The boat and crew are now all safely docked in Mindello. To date, eight boats have retired from this year's ARC, mainly due to mechanical Atlantic Rally for Cruisers website

Ancasta Ker 33 660x82PredictWind.comZhik ZKG 660x82

Related Articles

Vendee Globe - Both leaders tack setting up an intense finish battle
According to the official tracker, Vendee Globe Race leader, Armel Le Cleac'h has tacked in what could be the final move According to the official tracker, Vendee Globe Race leader, Armel Le Cleac'h has tacked in what could be the final move of the Vendee Globe race for 2016/17. Rival Alex Thomson has responded. At the latest report, the French sailor was attempting to cross ahead of his rival, Alex Thomson - who still had the option to tack underneath and then take his chances on the final 24 hours.
Posted on 18 Jan
Day 74 – Vendée Globe victory 24 hours from Le Cléac'h's grasp
British sailor Alex Thomson conceded that his chances of overhauling leader Armel LeCléac'h on the home strait were slim Alex Thomson today conceded that his chances of overhauling leader Armel Le Cléac'h on the home strait were slim, despite narrowing the gap to just 35 miles. In the last 24 hours Thomson, 42, has halved Le Cléach's lead of 70 miles but as the pair prepared to enter the final 300 miles of the solo round the world race this afternoon he said the advantage was now firmly with his French rival.
Posted on 18 Jan
Former Clipper Race skipper chasing Vendèe Globe glory
Alex, 42 from Gosport, made up 30nm on his French rival Armel le Clèac’h overnight to cut the deficit to around 40nm After more than 70 days, the Vendee Globe is set for an epic finish, with the youngest skipper to win the Clipper Race, Alex Thomson, closing in on the lead as the race enters into the final 24 hours. Alex, 42 from Gosport, made up 30 nautical miles on his French rival Armel le Clèac’h overnight to cut the deficit to around 40nm by Wednesday morning.
Posted on 18 Jan
Team Tilt officially selected for the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup
Twelve teams of youth sailors aged 19 to 25 have been selected to race the RBYAC 2017 in Bermuda in June. Twelve teams of youth sailors aged 19 to 25 have been selected to race the RBYAC 2017 in Bermuda in June. They will compete on the foiling AC45s that were used for the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series events and will race in the lead up to the America’s Cup itself.
Posted on 18 Jan
Vendée2020Vision sailors inspired by Alex Thomson’s performance
The aim of Vendée2020Vision is to help progress these sailors up to the next rung of the ladder. To help them with their fund raising, Vendée2020Vision sailors last year had the opportunity to take part in 12 bespoke training modules.
Posted on 18 Jan
Inaugural GC32 Championship coming up next month
A joint gathering of the international fleets of GC32 one design foiling catamarans is to take place in Muscat This will be the first occasion ever that the GC32 Racing Tour and the Extreme Sailing Series™ fleets have combined to lock horns on the race course.
Posted on 18 Jan
Quantum Key West Race Week – Day 2 with Nic Douglass
Day two for my first time at Quantum Key West Race Week, and I was out on a J122, Second Star, sailing in the ORC fleet Day two for my first time at Quantum Key West Race Week, and today I was out on a J122, Second Star, sailing in the ORC fleet. What. A. Day.
Posted on 18 Jan
Vendee Globe – Thomson races towards the finish against French rival
British sailor Alex Thomson is in second place with just 40 nautical miles behind French rival Armel Le Cléac’h. With just 390 nautical miles left to the finish port of Les Sable d’Olonne and less than two days until the leading duo are expected to complete the solo, non-stop, around the world race, British sailor Alex Thomson is in second place with just 40 nautical miles behind French rival Armel Le Cléac’h.
Posted on 18 Jan
Vendee Globe - Thomson reduces margin but has to make vital decision
Single-handed monohull world record holder, Alex Thomson, continues to gnaw away at Banque Populaire VIII's lead Single-handed monohull world record holder, Alex Thomson, continues to gnaw away at Banque Populaire VIII's lead in the Vendee Globe Race. The margin between the first and second boat is now just 36nm.
Posted on 18 Jan
City of Perth Festival of Sail inc Warren Jones Youth Regatta preview
The City of Perth Festival of Sail is coming to Perth Waters with a bonanza of sailing and social activities The City of Perth Festival of Sail is coming to Perth Waters with a bonanza of sailing and social activities taking place from Sunday 29 January - Friday 3 February.
Posted on 18 Jan