Please select your home edition
Edition
SailX 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

Southern Spars - 100T Clewring CruisingZhik Isotak Ocean 660x82

Related Articles

26 boats ready to set sail for Transat Québec Saint-Malo Ocean Race
Things are heating up at the port of Québec and the Quai Paquet wharf across the river in Lévis Things are heating up at the port of Québec and the Quai Paquet wharf across the river in Lévis, with just days to go until the festivities commence for the lead-up to the ninth edition of the prestigious Transat Québec Saint-Malo ocean race, presented in collaboration with the City of Lévis.
Posted today at 3:03 am
National birthdays & sailing—Sailing news from North America & beyond
Editorial Editorial
Posted on 28 Jun
The Extreme Sailing Series™ heads for Madeira
The Act in Madeira, the 2015 “World’s Leading Island Destination” replaces Istanbul as the Host Venue for Act six. The Act in Madeira, the 2015 “World’s Leading Island Destination” replaces Istanbul as the Host Venue for Act six, originally planned for the same dates and will be run in partnership with Madeira Tourism and the Regional Sailing Association.
Posted on 28 Jun
Provezza’s pair of threes trumps 52 Super Series fleet in Porto Cervo
Ergin Imre’s team bounced right back today opening the race with a nice pair of solid third places to lead the regatta. After two good races, Porto Cervo delivering a consistent 9-11kts of NNW’ly breeze and warm sunshine, and Provezza leads Rán Racing by two points. Niklas Zennström’s crew finished second behind Bronenosec in the first race and sixth in the second race which was won by Quantum Racing.
Posted on 28 Jun
Iffy day for Azzurra at Settimana delle Bocche
It was iffy day for Azzurra who ended at first day of racing event that is also the second stage of the 52 Super Series After the strong north westerly Mistral winds that kept the fleet of twelve TP52s at port yesterday and eliminated the chances of a practice race, today there were lovely conditions in the Costa Smeralda with north westerly breezes at eight to 12 knots.
Posted on 28 Jun
TP52 Super Series Porto Cervo – Races one and two images by Max Ranchi
Photographer Max Ranchi has provided this gallery of images from races one and two Photographer Max Ranchi has provided this gallery of images from races one and two
Posted on 28 Jun
A Q&A with Simon Parker about the Clipper Race and trans-USA cycling
Sail-World.com talked with Simon Parker to hear about his audacious sailing and cycling adventure with the Clipper Race. Few adventures top crossing oceans, unless one also involves a multi-sport element such as climbing mountains. Simon Parker, a British journalist, raced across the Pacific Ocean with the Clipper Round The World Race, followed by a transcontinental bike ride, before rejoining his mates aboard Garmin for a transatlantic race. Sail-World.com recently caught up with him to learn more.
Posted on 28 Jun
Mixed fortunes for Clipper Race fleet as Atlantic High causes pain
The frontrunners have managed to escape the grasp of the light winds associated with the ridge of the Azores High As the front of the fleet heads north the wind has been building, and the battle for positions is intense at the make or break stage of the race with roughly 1300 nautical miles to go until Derry-Londonderry.
Posted on 28 Jun
Two new teams to make their competitive debuts on the GC32 Racing Tour
For the GC32 Malcesine Cup, taking place as part of Foiling Week, ten GC32 teams will be competing. Japan joins the event in the form of Naofumi Kamei’s Mamma Aiuto! Like Jason Carroll’s Argo team, Mamma Aiuto! comes from the Melges 32 high performance keel boat, where it finished a very respectable third in the class’ last World Championship.
Posted on 28 Jun
18ft skiffs - Kiwis take lead on Day 2 of Mark Foy Worlds in Fiji
Day 2 started in similar conditions but as racing was underway breeze built to a steady 12 knots and swung to the right. The same three boats remain at the top of the leaderboard at the end of the second day in the Fiji Fizz regatta at Denarau, which is hosting the Mark Foy World Championship for the class. However the order has changed, with Yamaha NZ moving into the top spot after the second day of racing.
Posted on 28 Jun