Please select your home edition
Edition
upffront 728x90

Governor’s Cup Race - Battling winds off the South African coast

by Sue Pelling in conjunction with ADPR on 26 Dec 2012
2012 Governor’s Cup Race - Canace CAN DO! Jan Theron
The fleet in the Governor’s Cup race are now three days into the 1,700-mile downwind journey from Simon’s Town to the remote island of St Helena in the Atlantic.

After a near perfect start from False Bay Yacht Club on Saturday, and a tricky and tactical first couple of days, the 19-strong fleet is beginning to settle into life at sea off the Western coast of South Africa.

Most of the fleet have experienced light airs generally from the south-west (from zero to 11kts) over the last 24 hours but the forecast shows more wind expected, which should improve overall progress of the race towards St Helena, particularly for those nearer the coast of Africa.

The crew aboard Unwind – Niels and Margret Hendrik’s Simonis Voogd 501 design – advised Cape Town Radio yesterday of their retirement due to rudder problems. They arrived at Yachtport, Saldanha Bay yesterday afternoon but they intend to resume their voyage to St Helena once the steering problem is fixed.

According to this morning’s tracker, Kevin Ward’s Elan Impression 434, Canace, sponsored by Nampak Bevcan’s CAN DO!, is currently leading the fleet – on the water. Skippered by Kevin Ward and crewed by a team of six between the ages of 52 and 70, Canace is now in a favourable position to really gain a further advantage on the fleet, she will be hoping that the winds fill in from the South. However, she is currently stuck in an area of high pressure, which could affect her position if the likes of Rob Newman’s Du Toit catamaran – Compromise – one of the early race leaders, maintains her current consistent speed.

Michael/Heidi Kavanagh aboard their Beneteau First 44.7 – Ray of Light – together with their regular race team, and their four-year-old son, Sean, are enjoying a fabulous Christmas. He says they are currently [0800] stuck in no wind but he sounds positive that better sailing conditions are on the way.

'We are now 377 miles into our voyage and are all enjoying a fabulous Christmas Day at sea. We are currently becalmed but sun is shining and everybody is in good spirits. We’ve had one round of Christmas presents this morning, and yesterday we discovered a hunk of pork roast, which somehow sneaked its way onboard. Just before we were about to eat the roast pork we caught a lovely Yellow Tail so we had that for starter. All that is missing is a bit of breeze.'

Plenty of sea life is keeping competitors entertained as they sit in no wind. Kavanagh reported: 'There is lots of sea life, dolphins, and jumping tuna all around, so even though we are stuck in no wind, we feel it is a privilege to be out here. Basically, if you were looking for a cruising and sun-tanning holiday this would be it.'

Being away from home on Christmas Day is not something that seems to worry four-year-old Sean Kavanagh who, according to dad, was given plenty to keep him amused. 'An activity book and coloured pencils, Lego, a little light torch, and a quad bike that pulls an inflatable rubber boat so he can fantasize about pulling and launching his own boat.'

As far as strategy is concerned Kavanagh says the aim is to find the wind. 'At the moment we are pretty close to the coast on the border between South Africa and Namibia and we are now hoping to pick up a bit of breeze. The forecast, which hasn’t been very accurate, suggests we should pick up some breeze during the course of the day and we can begin to work our way offshore towards St Helena. Here’s hoping.'

More details and current positions on the Governor’s Cup Yacht Race can be found here; or by visiting the Governor’s Cup Facebook page.

Barz Optics - Melanin LensesWildwind 2016 660x82Ancasta Ker 40+ 660x82

Related Articles

Star-studded SB20 fleet set for superb Cascais 2016 World Championship
Entry list is packed with round the world sailors, Olympic medalists, and top keelboat sailors, with 14 races scheduled. A superb fleet of 75 teams have entered from 13 nations, including the reigning champion crew from France who are back with new helmsman, young French 49er helm Gabriel Skoczek. The new team showed form by winning the Portuguese Nationals in June against many of the top contenders.
Posted today at 10:54 am
Melges 20 World Championship opens with Illbruck's Pinta in the lead
The most interesting aspect of Day One is that the initial names are cast for the title of World Champion The most interesting aspect of Day One is that the initial names are cast for the title of World Champion, and with the first three races on the scoreboard each played with a mistral breeze of 10-14 knots, nothing is ever guaranteed. In fact, it will be a hard fought battle from start to finish with most likely, the champion being determined in the last race, on the last run.
Posted on 25 Aug
Rallye des Iles du Soleil 2017 to Marie-Galante in Guadeloupe Islands
New rally open to amateur sailors is now proposed by Grand Pavois Organisation with a route from Madeira to MarieGalante A new rally open to amateur sailors is now proposed by Grand Pavois Organisation with a route from Madeira to Marie-Galante in the Island of Guadeloupe. Gatherings will be available in two French ports, one in Charente-Maritime for the Atlantic fleet and one in La Ciotat (Aix-Marseilles Provence Metropolis) for Mediterranean boats, in order to help the fleets reach Funchal (Madeira/Portugal)
Posted on 25 Aug
Best pictures of the first 4 Acts of the Extreme Sailing Series™
An influx of fresh talent have all added to the hype, but the greatest evolution is the replacement of the Extreme 40. An influx of fresh talent, new venues and a revised race format have all added to the hype, but the greatest evolution is the replacement of the Extreme 40 by a smaller, faster catamaran: the flying GC32.
Posted on 25 Aug
Return to Russia for the Extreme Sailing Series™
Joining the fleet as the season heads into its second half is Gazprom Team Russia, led by WMRT champion, Phil Robertson. With one week to go, the fleet returns to St Petersburg for the fifth Act of the season, presented by SAP, 35 of the world’s best sailors are getting their heads in the game and preparing for the one of the trickiest venues of the season so far.
Posted on 25 Aug
Normandy Channel Race to kick off next month
Race will kick off on 11 September. Created back in 2010 by Manfred Ramspacher the event has been quick to win acclaim. Indeed, every edition has not only crowned a rising star of international offshore racing, but also given rise to some fantastic on-the-water tussles throughout what is a fascinating course, spanning over 1,000 miles close to the coastlines of Normandy, England and Ireland.
Posted on 24 Aug
Ready, set, go! Melges 20 World Championship in Scarlino
56 teams assemble for the championship, all prepped and ready for four days of intense competition Scarlino, Italy The wait for the International Melges 20 fleet is over and tomorrow, the trigger on the 2016 Melges 20 World Championship taking place at Marina di Scarlino/Club Nautico Scarlino will be pulled.
Posted on 24 Aug
Yachts for Sale, Shows and Events for Ancasta International
The largest on-water boatshow is running from the 16th - 25th September this year at Southampton's Mayflower Park. The largest on-water boatshow is running from the 16th - 25th September this year at Southampton's Mayflower Park. The Ancasta team will be presenting models from Beneteau Sail and Power, Prestige and Lagoon Catamarans.
Posted on 23 Aug
The Clipper Race turns 20!
Throughout the race, tales of crew celebrating birthdays on board filter back and they are always a special occasion Throughout the race, tales of Clipper Race crew celebrating their birthdays on board filter back and they are always a special occasion, likely to remain a completely unique event in their lifetime.
Posted on 23 Aug
The Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup – The Ultimate Showcase
This year’s fleet will surpass the previous record for participation (49 competing yachts in 2010). With the average size of the yachts nudging 28 metres (90 feet), if the entrants lined up bow to stern they would measure a little under 1,425 metres (0.9 of a statute mile). For an event that has always been breathtaking in magnitude, these are seriously impressive numbers -- proof positive of the continuing passion within the sport to push the boundaries of design, technology and knowledge.
Posted on 22 Aug