by Kathy Large
There’s proof this year that size doesn't guarantee success in ocean racing. The results are in from Route Halifax Saint-Pierre, a 353 nm race between Halifax, Nova Scotia and the French Island of Saint-Pierre, just off the coast of Newfoundland. The overall PHRF winner this year is a 6.50 metre Nacira named 'Shanawdithit', owned and skippered by Rodolphe Victorri of Saint-Pierre. The 'mini' is built for ocean racing but at the same time is dwarfed by the largest entry in the fleet this year, a Volvo 60 owned and skipperd by Derek Hatfield, that operates with a crew of 14.
Rodolphe Victorri prepares Shanawdithit for RHSP - Route Hlaifax Saint-Pierre
Victorri made the crossing in 44:07:33 compared to the fastest time which was laid down by Hatfield’s team at 37:52:31. But when the handicaps were calculated, 'Shanawdithit' was faster by nearly four hours than the closest rival in PHR-1. In addition to winning overall honours, Victorri also won trophies for first place in the double-handed competition, the Hal Davies trophy for placing the highest as a new skipper in the competition, and for the best placing by a boat from Saint-Pierre.
Capt. Mike Evans and 'Sea Smoke' won highest placing in PHR-2, as well as trophies for the Armed Services competition and the Friar Trophy for the best combined score with the Marblehead to Halifax Ocean Race in 2013.
One of the creators of Route Halifax Saint-Pierre, Philippe Paturel won the honour for the top IRC yacht this year, racing his Archambault 31 'Ciao Baby!' This year's regatta chair, Scott MacLeod, was the winner of the non-spinnaker class with his 'Easy Company'.
Full results of the ocean race, trophies and an inshore race are available on the event’s website.