Please select your home edition
Edition
Bakewell-White Yacht Design

RORC Caribbean 600 fifth edition preview

by Louay Habib on 30 Aug 2012
Spectacular Caribbean sunset as Northern Child races in the 2012 edition of the RORC Caribbean 600 - RORC Caribbean 600 2013 © Tim Wright / Photoaction.com http://www.photoaction.com
RORC Caribbean 600 fifth edition is set to get underway on Monday 18th February 2013, in Antigua. The race attracts a wide variety of yachts from all over the world, including ocean going performance cruisers and some of the world's most magnificent yachts.

The first confirmed entry for this year's race was Joseph Mele's Swan 44, Triple Lindy. Joseph is a member of the City Island Sailing Club in New York and competed in this year's Newport to Bermuda Race. Triple Lindy is making her debut in the race but Local Antiguan dentist, Bernie Evan Wong is back with High Tension. His Mumm 36 is the smallest yacht in the race so far and the only yacht to have competed in all four previous editions: 'I just love it for the challenge. We won't be the first to finish but I know we will get a warm Antiguan welcome just like everybody else. I am looking forward to the race just as much as the first one.'

Five stunning superyachts took part in the 2012 edition of the RORC Caribbean 600 and there is every indication that at least that number will be racing next February.

The 215ft carbon fibre ketch Hetairos took overall line honours in 2012, taking just over 50 hours to complete the course and she is expected to be back in Antigua for the 2013 edition. The 203ft schooner Athos is expected to be on the start line, as is the 180ft schooner, Adela. Athos' Boat Captain, Tony Brookes said that the team are very keen to take part: 'Athos was commissioned just 18 months ago so we are still getting to know her. For the Caribbean 600 we would take a crew of 25 and with 3,000 square metres of sail area downwind, we need every one of the team for sail handling. We hope to give Adela a run for her money and enjoy some wonderful sailing.'

The majority of the RORC Caribbean 600 fleet will be made up of five separate IRC Classes, enjoying competitive racing against yachts of similar speed. Last year there was a virtual photo finish in IRC Class 1: Amanda Hartley's Swan 56, Clem was the winner by just 21 seconds on corrected time from Colin Buffin's Swan 62, Uxorious IV. In IRC Class 2 Ross Appleby's Oyster 46, Scarlet Logic had a tremendous race, winning the class and a credible fourth overall: 'We enjoyed the race so much last year that we just had to come back,' expressed Appleby. 'We have learnt a lot from last time, which we hope to put into practice and we we expect to have a very close race, especially with the Grand Soleil 43, Quokka.'

Philippe Falle will be the skipper of Quokka owned by Peter Rutter, a past RORC Commodore: 'We have a charter crew for the race but to be honest, a 600 mile race around 11 Caribbean islands is not exactly a hard sell, although we do have a couple of places still available,' said Falle. 'Some people might under estimate how hard a race this is. Racing 600 miles is always going to take it out of you and in this race, the heat is just as much a problem as the cold is in others. I expect that we will have a good chance of winning our class and if the weather plays into our hands, I don't see any reason why we can't win overall.'

Peter Harrison's magnificent 114ft ketch, Sojana will be returning to the Caribbean to take part. Sojana had a fantastic battle with Gerhard Andlinger's 125ft Perini Navi, P2 last year, as Sojana's Boat Captain, Marc Fitzgerald explains: 'It is a rare occasion when we can unleash the full power of Sojana and match-race a similar boat day after day. Although it is never possible to guarantee wind, it is highly likely that the Caribbean 600 will deliver big breeze, big seas and fantastic sailing conditions but the '600 is not just a sleigh ride. There are lots of tactical decisions to be made and the course has so many twists and turns that it is a full workout for the crew. If someone was to write a case study of the strategies for this race, it would run to many pages.'

The monohull course record of 40 hours 20 minutes and 2 seconds was set by George David's Rambler 100 in 2011. George David's Rambler 90 is a confirmed entry and will be looking to go one better after coming second to Niklas Zennström's JV72 Rán last time out. Mike Slade's Supermaxi, ICAP Leopard, previously held the record and Boat Captain, Chris Sherlock, says Leopard want it back: 'Last year, Leopard was in the shed all winter, having a major refit including a full interior, but we have lost none of our pace and given the right conditions, Leopard is very capable of beating the record set by Rambler 100. We have gathered a lot of information about the race and Mike (Slade) has made the race a top priority for the season. We are very confident that if the weather lines up for us, we could complete the course in under 40 hours.'

Several notable multihulls are expected to race, John Burnie's ORMA 60, Region Guadeloupe flew around the course in 40 hours 11 mins 5 secs in 2009 to set the multihull course record and Burnie will be back to defend that record in 2013. Lloyd Thornburg's Gunboat 66 Phaedo and Peter Aschenbrenner's 63ft trimaran, Paradox will be returning and two Maxi Trimarans; Francis Joyon's EDEC and Thomas Coville's Sodebo have expressed interest.
RORC Carribbean 600 website
Newport Boat Show 2016 660x82Ancasta Ker 40+ 660x82Barz Optics - Melanin Lenses

Related Articles

Vendée Globe – Yann Eliès and his team relaunch 60-ft IMOCA in Lorient
Yann is now on the final stretch before the event and will be taking part in the three training courses. Yann is now on the final stretch before the event and will be taking part in the three training courses organised at the Finistère Ocean Racing Centre in Port-la-Forêt (Brittany). He will also take part in the Azimut Trophy. Yann Eliès tells us about the work that has been done and what lies ahead in the final part of his preparation.
Posted on 26 Aug
Vendée Globe – A long trip between France and Iceland for Heerema
After completing two solo transatlantic crossings in the spring, Pieter Heerema is currently on his third major trip. After completing two solo transatlantic crossings in the spring, Pieter Heerema is currently on his third major trip. Thanks to this voyage from France to Iceland and back, the Dutch skipper is finding out more about No Way Back, the new generation IMOCA on which he will line up on 6th November
Posted on 26 Aug
Phoenix returns and Cayard is back for the TP52 World Championships
Richard Cohen will compete at the championships in Mahón, Menorca, with Phoenix, which will be skippered by Paul Cayard. The carefully assembled team includes a core group of sailors who have many years of experience in the class, but Cayard cautions that their initial objective is to learn and improve together in line with their long term goal, to be competitive on the 2017 52 Super Series.
Posted on 26 Aug
Michael Marshall triumphs at J/22 World Championship
With a second place finish in Thursday’s only race, Mike Marshall, Todd Hiller and Luke Lawrence are the champions. Heading into the 10th and final race, Marshall and Chris Doyle were tied on points at 30. As the 41 teams arrived at CORK in the morning, the after effects of an overnight storm left breeze in the mid-20s, so the Race Committee postponed on shore.
Posted on 25 Aug
Best pictures of the first 4 Acts of the Extreme Sailing Series™
An influx of fresh talent have all added to the hype, but the greatest evolution is the replacement of the Extreme 40. An influx of fresh talent, new venues and a revised race format have all added to the hype, but the greatest evolution is the replacement of the Extreme 40 by a smaller, faster catamaran: the flying GC32.
Posted on 25 Aug
Return to Russia for the Extreme Sailing Series™
Joining the fleet as the season heads into its second half is Gazprom Team Russia, led by WMRT champion, Phil Robertson. With one week to go, the fleet returns to St Petersburg for the fifth Act of the season, presented by SAP, 35 of the world’s best sailors are getting their heads in the game and preparing for the one of the trickiest venues of the season so far.
Posted on 25 Aug
Marshall and Doyle tied on points at J/22 World Championship
By way of a victory in Wednesday’s third race, Mike Marshall, Todd Hiller and Luke Lawrence are tied at 30 points By way of a victory in Wednesday’s third race, Mike Marshall, Todd Hiller and Luke Lawrence are tied at 30 points with Chris Doyle, Will Harris and Adam Burns. Jeff Todd is still in the hunt in third place with 35 points.
Posted on 24 Aug
Debriefing the 2016 Rio Olympics—Sailing news North America and beyond
Editorial Editorial
Posted on 23 Aug
The Clipper Race turns 20!
Throughout the race, tales of crew celebrating birthdays on board filter back and they are always a special occasion Throughout the race, tales of Clipper Race crew celebrating their birthdays on board filter back and they are always a special occasion, likely to remain a completely unique event in their lifetime.
Posted on 23 Aug
A magnificent fleet gathers in Cowes for Etchells World Championship
58 teams from all over the world have entered the championship, hosted by the Royal London Yacht Club. Twenty teams are from Great Britain and a dozen each from Australia and the United States of America. Four entries are from Hong Kong and as far afield as: Bermuda, Ireland, New Zealand, Portugal, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates.
Posted on 22 Aug