On the morning before the start of the 2013 Vuurschepenrace, part of the Delta Lloyd North Sea Regatta, the organization received a total of 52 pre-entries. This evening at 7 pm off the Scheveningen coast, the first gun for the 110-mile crossing to Harwich, England will be fired. Looking at the current weather forecasts this year's Vuurschepenrace is not likely to be a record breaker.
The north-northeasterly wind is expected to be light to medium in the early evening. During the night, the breeze will drop and it slowly changes direction to the Southwest. 'Here in the corridors of the Regatta Office it has already been asked whether it is allowed to anchor in the shipping lane,' said Race Officer Edwin Lodder. In the early morning, the fleet will almost come to a halt at a wind speed of two knots off the English coast, which then gradually increases to about 13 to 15 knots.
In 2012, skipper De Graaf and his crew took Line Honours and the overall win in the IRC with their Baraka GP Ker 40. This year, they are back to defend their titles, which won't be easy with among other the Pleomax Volvo Open 60 of Harm Prins as competitor.
The double-handed class shows a clear change from other years. Formerly, maybe two to three duos lined up for the start. Now there are eleven.
During the prize-giving ceremony of 2012, The Hague City Counsel Member of Youth, Welfare and Sports Karsten Klein unveiled his wish to join a crew in the 2013 Vuurschepenrace. Erik van Vuuren, skipper of the winning Lenco Team, offered him spontaneously a place onboard. However, his plans changed and therefore it is the IJsvogel 1300 of skipper Marcel Schuttelaar that will be crewed by the politician.
The inshore program of the Delta Lloyd North Sea Regatta 2013 has a strong international expansion. First of all, the Gazprom Swan 60-class with five to six new 60-foot will be racing in Scheveningen. With on board sailors from the professional circuit. From the Olympic angle, the new mixed multihull Nacra 17-class is added. It is expected that part of the participating fleet of the Delta Lloyd Regatta will first compete along the Hague coast. This in preparation for the first ever Nacra 17 Worlds that takes place in July in Scheveningen.
For information, see the website Delta Lloyd North Sea Regatta
by Diana Bogaards
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1:26 PM Tue 7 May 2013GMT
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