Please select your home edition
Edition
RS Sailing 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

PredictWind.comNaiadNorth Technology - Southern Spars

Related Articles

Long Beach Race Week kicks off with a blast
Southwesterly winds of 12 knots built to 20, at several marks on three courses, which hosted 120 boats in 15 classes. The new Pac52 designs proved a thrill in the fresh conditions, but didn’t have a corner on the excitement; with tight racing among the 30-year-old Schock 35 fleet, vying for their Pacific Coast Championship title. Robert Marcus’ Schock sat at the top of the leaderboard in that eight-boat division.
Posted today at 6:33 pm
Quantum gets nearer to victory at Audi Sailing Week 52 Super Series
The four days of racing so far have been suspenseful and have seen several TP52 teams alternate in the leading positions After today's racing the provisional results see Quantum Racing in first place followed by a new entry: Provezza IX in second place and Rán Racing in third.
Posted today at 6:21 pm
52 Super Series – Audi Sailing Week – Closing the deal
Provezza go into Sunday’s final two scheduled windward-leeward races poised only two points behind the Quantum Racing Ergin Imre’s Provezza won a 30 nautical mile coastal race today to promote the Turkish flagged team to second place on the overall standings and give them a fighting chance of winning their first regatta in four years of participation
Posted today at 5:29 pm
Para World Sailing Championships going down to the wire
Three races across all three Para World Sailing disciplines were conducted and the leaderboards going into Sunday In amongst Kieler Woche (Kiel Week) sailing festival, the sailors racing across the 2.4 Norlin OD, Men’s Hansa 303 and Women’s Hansa 303, all One Person Keelboats, were tested by a south westerly 13-16 knot breeze, somewhat less than the 20+ knots that pushed them to survival mode the day prior.
Posted today at 4:07 pm
Audi Sailing Week - TP52 Super Series – Day 4 images by Max Ranchi
Photographer Max Ranchi has provided this gallery of images from coastal race six Photographer Max Ranchi has provided this gallery of images from coastal race six
Posted today at 3:42 pm
BIRW - Day 5 - All good things must come to an end
Chris Lewis still looked a bit stunned as he stood on dock at Payne’s drinking a mudslide while surrounded by his team. Chris Lewis still looked a bit stunned as he stood on the dock at Payne’s drinking a mudslide while surrounded by his jubilant team. Lewis and his crew on Kenai had just pulled off a stunning comeback and somewhat surprising upset, doing so in dramatic fashion.
Posted today at 7:30 am
Block Island Race Week - Day 4 - Fun in the sun
There’s a reason why Challenge IV has captured J/44 class in six straight editions of Block Island Race Week. There’s a reason why Challenge IV has captured J/44 class in six straight editions of Block Island Race Week. It’s because skipper Jeffrey Willis and crew know how to put the hammer down when it matters.
Posted today at 5:21 am
Racing is underway at C. Thomas Clagett, Jr. Memorial Clinic & Regatta
Twenty one boats registered for C. Thomas Clagett Regatta greeted with an established Southerly breeze in Newport today The twenty one boats registered for the 15th C. Thomas Clagett, Jr. Memorial Clinic and Regatta were greeted with an established Southerly breeze in Newport today. The race committee held a morning briefing and sent the fleet out to the race course which was set between Rose and Goat Island.
Posted today at 4:05 am
52 Super Series - Audi Sailing Week - Azzurra fights but doesn't win
Azzurra is having bad time of it in home waters, hasn’t been able to get results at Audi Sailing Week - 52 Super Series Azzurra is having a bad time of it in her home waters and hasn’t been able to get results at the Audi Sailing Week -52 Super Series. Today’s two races were won by Quantum and Gladiator.
Posted today at 3:24 am
52 Super Series - Audi Sailing Week - Better never stops
Wednesday’s transgression may be two days behind them. Today they climbed to top of Audi Sailing Week standings Wednesday’s transgression may be two days behind them. Today they climbed to the top of the Porto Cervo 52 Super Series Audi Sailing Week standings, sailing one, three, one, four since they retired on from the first day’s coastal race due to an error, but Quantum Racing’s hard driving tactician Terry Hutchinson has in no way put the opening day mistake behind him.
Posted today at 1:48 am