Please select your home edition
Edition
Mackay Boats

Mt Gay Rum 2013 Neptune Regatta - the Garmin Race to Zero

by Guy Nowell, Sail-World Asia on 13 Feb 2013
Mt Gay Rum 2013 Neptune Regatta. Manao Express at the equator. Guy Nowell © http://www.guynowell.com
We all know where the equator is – ‘down there’ if you live in the northern hemisphere or ‘somewhere north’ if you are any sort of Antipodean. For as long as people have been making charts of the oceans of the world, the line that marks equidistance from the poles has exercised the imagination of sailors.

In the 18th century many and various traditions grew up around the supposition that ‘Crossing the Line’ for the first time provoked an aggressive visit from King Neptune himself – often accompanied by Queen Codfish, Davy Jones, and a whole panoply of salty characters demanding obeisance to His Aquatic Majesty, a reckoning of nautical sins, some Right Royal forgiveness and the conversion of newcomers (Slimy Pollywogs) into loyal subjects of the King, known as Trusty Shellbacks.

How many ocean races provide for an opportunity to Cross the Line? The Volvo and the Vendee Globe for sure, and maybe the Clipper depending on the route, but not everyone has the time or the qualifications to participate in such events.



So for those wishing to have last Monday’s dinner rubbed in their hair, a desire to be covered in beaten egg and black syrup, an uncontrollable urge to consume evil concoctions of fish sauce Tabasco, coffee grounds, rum and durian, here is your opportunity. Welcome to the only race on the planet (that we know of) that has a finish line on the equator. Welcome to the Garmin Race to Zero – 0 degrees 0.00 minutes – the equator.

1005 start time (to allow for anyone who may have overindulged last night – heaven forbid – all classes, one start and motoryachts joining too. An 8nm sail in highly variable breeze. From the Committee Boat on the equator we could see the whole racecourse, from Neptune’s Realm at 0deg 0.00min, all the way back to the start line at Pulau Sikeling. It’s not often that you can read a race so well just by looking at the whole track. The principal item was a big rain cell that moved east to west across the northern end of the course. Those that looked back and saw it coming ‘got lucky’ and gybed early, leaving the back markers stranded in no breeze at all and allowing themselves to beat into the draft sucked into the system. Not quite a straight line to the finish, but almost.



Kukukerchu read it right, crossing the line at 1137h, and so did Shahtoosh, both winning their respective divisions (IRC Racing, Premier Cruising) by handsome margins. The rest of the divisions straggled in with dying breeze.

After passing over the equator, boats are allowed ‘time out’ to complete Crossing the Line ceremonies. One young lady seemed to have mysteriously lost her swimsuit, no doubt an offering to His Majesty. Across the fleet, champagne corks popped, silly wigs were donned, respectable citizens suddenly turned into pirates, and Slimy Pollywogs were turned into Trusty Shellbacks. Jamie Boag - Director of two VOR challenges, but still a pollywog – was unfortunate to have brought along his good friend Ian Walker – two-time VOR skipper and therefore an exceptionally Trusty Shellback. Boag was last seen manacled to the backstay, bedecked with seaweed and being lashed with spiky palm fronds. Rumours of having been administered ‘a very stiff drink’ are unconfirmed at time of going to press.



By now the rain cell had moved off too the west, taking all the wind with it. This A Good Thing if you are conducting Crossing he Line ceremonies, but Not a Good Thing if you wish to complete the round trip and sail back to Neptune Island. PRO Jerry Rollin and ARO Prakash Reddy exercised their magisterial wisdom, abandoned racing for the rest of the day, and commanded another toast to King Neptune. Do not pass Go, straight back to Pulau Sikeling.

Short Results
IRC Racing
1. Kukukerchu 4, 2, 1, 1 (8)
2. Walawala 3, 1, 2, 4 (10)
3. Sea Bass 1, 3, 4, 2 (10)
4. Rikki Tikki Tavi 2, 4, 3, 3 (12)
Multihull Racing
1. The Dash 1, 1, 1, 2 (5)
2. Manao Express 2, 3, 2, 1 (8)
3. Tri to Fly 4, 2, 3, 4 (13)
4. Dash Boot 3, 4, 6, 3 (16)
Premier Cruising
1. Baby Tongs 1, 1, 3 (5
2. Defiance 2, 2, 2 (6)
3. Shatoosh 3, 3, 1 (7)
Cruising
1. Minx 1, 2, 1 (4)
2. Mico Verde 5, 1, 2 (8)
3. Nay 2, 3, 4 (9)
4. WYSIWYG 3, 4, 3 (10)







Mackay BoatsInsun - AC ProgramPredictWind.com

Related Articles

The Bridge Centennial Transat – British sailor reveals change of tack
Samantha revealed that the race between the Queen Mary 2 and four of the greatest trimarans will be unforgettable As the crowds lined the harbour walls of St Nazaire – and the decks of the QM2, to see the boats cross the start line, Davies, the navigator on board the 30 metre-long trimaran, Actual, and the four other crew, had to perform a last minute manoeuvre to avoid being run over by their vast rival.
Posted today at 6:30 pm
Big Wednesday stops play at GC32 Villasimius Cup
The second stage is a very different venue to the flat-water of Lake Garda where the first round took place last month The Marina di Villasimius is situated on a peninsula that lies in a north-south axis, with Capo Carbonara being the south-eastern corner of Sardinia.
Posted today at 6:05 pm
HotelPlanner.com to debut in Clipper Round the World Yacht Race
The HotelPlanner.com yacht will be one of twelve teams participating in the eleventh edition of the unique 40,000nm race As an Official Team Partner, HotelPlanner.com will use the global reach of the Clipper Race to increase brand awareness, particularly in key destinations across the six continents visited on the eleven-month duration race route.
Posted today at 1:21 pm
The second event in the RC44 Championship is about to get underway
There are nine RC44s lined up in Porto Cervo, along the docks in front of the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda. These high performance One Designs were created by Russell Coutts (RC) twelve years ago and their appeal hasn't diminished even in these days of foiling catamarans.
Posted today at 12:59 pm
SuperFoilers Are Go!
SuperFoilers represent many things. Whilst those components are disparate and virtually from different planets SuperFoilers represent many things. Whilst those components are disparate and virtually from different planets in the great scheme of things, they come together in the one form as harmoniously as a Rolls Royce, and also deliver intense energy way past the sum of their parts, just like some amazing band.
Posted today at 10:15 am
ChartCo back on board as official supplier for Clipper 2017-18 Race
The Clipper Round the World Yacht Race welcomes ChartCo back as Official Supplier for its fifth consecutive edition. The Clipper Round the World Yacht Race welcomes ChartCo, a leading global supplier of maritime digital data and compliance services, back as Official Supplier for its fifth consecutive edition.
Posted today at 8:37 am
Less than one week to start of 2017 Transpac
The first wave of three starts to the 49th edition of 2017 biennial Transpac Race starts next Monday, July 3rd The first wave of three starts to the 49th edition of 2017 biennial Transpac Race starts next Monday, July 3rd, when 17 yachts in three monohull divisions will cross the start line at Point Fermin in Los Angeles to race to the finish at Diamond Head in Honolulu 2225 miles away. In addition, one yacht in the multihull division - Jerzy Poprawski's catamaran Kastor Pollux - will make start this day
Posted today at 3:04 am
Trimarans begin to fly as Queen Mary 2 passes rescue point
Queen Mary 2 looks unbeatable at front of The Bridge-Centennial Transat but during Day 2 she was finally being outpaced The Queen Mary 2 looks unbeatable at the front of The Bridge - Centennial Transat but during the second day of racing on Tuesday she was finally being outpaced as the “Ultime” class trimarans behind her spread their wings and began to fly.
Posted today at 2:07 am
More boaters on the water for July 4th holiday
July Fourth is shaping up to be the busiest time of the year on the water for the nation’s recreational boaters In a recent survey of more than a half million BoatUS members, 88 percent of respondents say they are “very-to-extremely likely” to go boating during the 2017 July Fourth holiday period
Posted on 27 Jun
RC44 Championship – From Bermuda to Porto Cervo
Around half of Lidvall's crew are youth sailors with the Swedish team, many of whom have flown in directly from Bermuda After they missed the first event of the season in Sotogrande, Artemis Racing Youth is rejoining the RC44 fleet under regular skipper Gustaf Lidvall and their tactician, Swedish multiple Olympic medallist, Freddie Lööf.
Posted on 27 Jun