Please select your home edition
Edition
upffront 728x90

RORC Caribbean 600 - Record entry to take part in 5th edition

by Louay Habib on 6 Feb 2013
Spectacular Caribbean sunset as Northern Child races in the 2012 edition of the RORC Caribbean 600 © Tim Wright / Photoaction.com http://www.photoaction.com
More than fifty yachts will be competing for the fifth edition of the RORC Caribbean 600. The Royal Ocean Racing Club's latest ocean race has proved an irresistible temptation to an international set of yacht owners and crew representing nations from an incredible 28 different countries: Antigua, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bermuda, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, France, French Southern Territories, Germany, Great Britain, Guadeloupe, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Poland, Russia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Turkey and the United States of America.

Warm trade winds, Caribbean swell and a challenging course are a fabulous combination and well over 500 sailors are rubbing their hands with relish at the prospect of blasting around 11 Caribbean islands in heavenly sailing conditions.


In the Canting Keel Class Mike Slade's British 100ft Maxi, ICAP Leopard, is back after a substantial refit and is a hot favourite for line honours. If the conditions are right and Leopard's stellar crew perform well, the Maxi could realistically eclipse the course record of 40 Hours, 20 minutes, two seconds set by George David's Rambler 100 back in 2011.

However Leopard could face stiff competition just for class honours. Ron O'Hanley's American Cookson 50, Privateer, is back for a third attempt to win the RORC Caribbean 600 Trophy. Privateer came third overall in 2010 and had a fantastic race last year before a 10% penalty put them out of the running for the overall title and O'Hanley's crew will consider this year's race as unfinished business.

With 16 confirmed entries from six different countries, the largest class racing in the RORC Caribbean 600 is IRC Zero and among them American Mini Maxi, Bella Mente, can be considered a favourite for the overall trophy. 'This will be my first 600 and I have to say I have been looking forward to it for a while,' commented Bella Mente's owner, Hap Fauth. 'It will be a good test of the crew in offshore conditions, something that we have not done a lot of since the boat was launched last year. We'll have an opportunity to test some new sails and crew coordination but since we have never sailed this race things are a bit unknown but I am optimistic of a podium result.'


Also racing in Class Zero the French Maxi, Med Spirit, is a fine example of the international flavour of the RORC Caribbean 600. Racing under the burgee of the Société Nautique de Marseille and owned by Didier Lacombe, the 92-foot racing yacht has been chartered by The Russian Yachting Federation and the crew will include 15 of its members, skippered by Russian round the world sailor, Vladimir Kulinichenko. The CEO of the Russian Sailing Federation, Oscar Konyukhov, will be part of the crew, as well as a host of world-class French sailors from the Vendee Globe and the Figaro Class.

This year's race has nine yachts over 90ft in length and two magnificent schooners will battle it out for the first time offshore. With an overall length of 181 feet the Dykstra designed schooner, Adela, is an impressive sight. However Adela's arch-rival Athos is 203 feet which is the largest yacht competing this year. Adela won the Spirit of Tradition Class in 2012 by some margin but Athos poses a serious threat. No doubt it will be fascinating to watch these two glorious yachts sparring around the 600-mile course.


Whilst the RORC Caribbean 600 has attracted a significant number of high profile yachts, the majority of the competitors attracted to the glorious conditions are Corinthian amateurs, racing in performance cruisers.

Eight yachts from Nautor's Swan will be competing in various classes and also for the Swan Caribbean Challenge Trophy. Colin Buffin's Swan 62, Uxorious IV, returns having had a superb yet agonising race last year. In 2012 Uxorious IV came second in class by an amazing 21 seconds to Amanda Hartley's Swan 56, Clem. This year the largest Swan competing will be Anders Nordquist's beautiful Swan 90, Nefertiti. One of the smaller Swans entered is Patriot, crewed by the British Royal Armoured Corps and skippered by Captain Richard Luckyn-Malone.

In IRC One one of the more unusual entries is Jolt 2, owned by Peter Harrison. The custom 45 foot yacht has been especially designed for short-handed sailing and a crew of just four people will be on board for the 600-mile race.

'Jolt has over 7000nm under her keel since September, and most of those miles, including a transatlantic, have been double-handed, we are racing the 600 with a couple more than that, under duress!' joked Jolt's captain, James Heald. 'Peter loves to helm and talk tactics and we are all looking forward to the challenges of sailing fast in big trade wind seas, threading the islands, gazing at stars, all just wearing a pair of shorts.'

Liz Lotz, Commodore of Lloyd's Yacht Club, will be taking part in her fourth Caribbean 600 racing on Grand Soleil 43, Trustmarque Quokka. Skippered by Philippe Falle, the majority of the crew are members of the LLYC. 'Leaving cold grey England in February to race in the Caribbean is just fantastic,' commented Liz. 'When you come over the brow of that hill over looking Falmouth Harbour and see all of the magnificent yachts, it just takes your breath away. The course is just amazing but the social scene is also a great reason to take part; last year's Prizegiving was the best I have ever attended. It didn't matter if you were a world class pro or a Corinthian sailor, everybody shared the buzz of a wonderful race and an unforgettable occasion.'

The RORC Caribbean 600 starts 18th February from Antigua.

For more information go to Caribbean 600.

Schaefer 2016 Ratchet Block 660x82InSunSport - NZNaiad/Oracle Supplier

Related Articles

J70 World Championship – Day 2
Three races were held on Berkeley Circle for the 68 international teams competing in the races on Wednesday. The conditions were once again, true San Francisco. The fog was lurking if not covering the race course, the wind had bite, and blew 14-18 knots. There was a big left shift in the last race that caught more than one local off guard.
Posted today at 5:29 pm
Sébastien Josse's lead up to the Vendée Globe
The skipper of the Mono60 Edmond de Rothschild is setting sail on his fifth round the world in 14 years. The skipper of the Mono60 Edmond de Rothschild is setting sail on his fifth round the world in 14 years. As such, the sailor can rely on a vast amount of experience, bolstered by all the expertise of the Gitana Team, the offshore racing stable founded in 2000 by Ariane and Benjamin de Rothschild
Posted today at 4:55 pm
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Clipper 70 fleet makeover begins
Maintenance Team at Race HQ is now hard at work to refit the Clipper 70s in preparation for the 2017-18 race. After clocking up an average of 41,000 miles each during their tenth edition race circumnavigation, the Maintenance Team at Race HQ is now hard at work to refit the Clipper 70s in preparation for the 2017-18 race.
Posted today at 8:42 am
Building conditions on Day 2 of the 2016 Alcatel J/70 Worlds
San Francisco has a storied reputation as a world-class venue during summer/early fall, and Day 2 of Alcatel J/70 Worlds San Francisco has a storied reputation as a world-class venue during the summer and early fall, and Day Two of the 2016 Alcatel J/70 Worlds, hosted by the St. Francis Yacht Club, did not disappoint.
Posted today at 4:54 am
Groupama Race – Between the north and Nouméa
Beau Geste arrived at 7:09am this morning, taking the third position on real-time, behind Vodafone and Scallywag. Beau Geste arrived at 7:09am this morning, taking the third position on real-time, behind Vodafone and Scallywag. The crew was very pleased about his race. The owner and skipper, Karl Kwok, compared the luxury and unspoilt landscapes from the East coast to Polynesia and the West coast to Cebu island in Philippines.
Posted on 28 Sep
68 yachts line up for the first two races of J70 World Championship
In the second race, conditions ranged from 18-25 knots with choppy seas which left more than one competitor on his side After three days of “non San Francisco” conditions over the wekend-85 degrees with sailors waiting around for wind while complaining of it being to hot in the parking lot-“San Francisco” came back. In the second race of the day, conditions ranged from 18-25 knots with choppy seas which left more than one competitor on his side with the gennaker up.
Posted on 28 Sep
Les Voiles de St Tropez - Eugenia Bakunova's view of Day 2
Not a lot of wind for the second day of racing at Les Voiles de St Tropez. Not a lot of wind for the second day of racing at Les Voiles de St Tropez. Eugenia Bakunova of mainsail.ru captured these images of the always picturesque classics as they sailed in a light breeze
Posted on 28 Sep
Legendary Mitch Booth to compete in St-Barth Cata Cup 2016
Sixty teams have already confirmed they will be competing in the event. As a triple world champion, Booth is no stranger to the F18. For this edition, he will be joined by Andy Dinsdale, a regular on the waters around St Barth.
Posted on 28 Sep
Les Voiles de St Tropez - Eugenia Bakunova's images from Day 1
Racing got underway in St Propez on the first day at Les Voiles de St Tropez with three dedicated race zones Racing got underway in St Propez on the first day at Les Voiles de St Tropez with three dedicated race zones, Nioulargue for the Modern yachts, Pampelonne for the Wallys and the bay for the 15 m JIs, racing in an even swell and glorious sunshine. Most of the Classic yachts are not due to set sail until the second day of racing. Eugenia Bakunova of mainsail.ru was on hand to capture the acti
Posted on 28 Sep
J-70 Worlds - San Francisco - Images from a fired up first day
Images and video of the opening day of the J-70 Worlds being run by the St Francis Yacht Club. Videographer and photographer, John Navas was on the water on the Berkley Circle, San Francisco for the opening day of the J-70 Worlds being run by the St Francis Yacht Club. Here's his view of the day in video and still images.
Posted on 28 Sep