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Season Points Championship continues this weekend with Morgan Cup Race

by Louay Habib on 8 Jun 2016
Season Points Championship continues this weekend with Morgan Cup Race Rick Tomlinson / RORC
The Royal Ocean Racing Club's Season's Points Championship continues this weekend with the prestigious Morgan Cup Race, which will finish in Dieppe for the first time since 2013. The 130-150 mile race marks the half-way stage in the championship.

Dieppe is the mostly easterly destination of any of the RORC races starting from Cowes, with stronger tides adding an additional flavour to the strategic mix.

Highly changeable weather is forecast for the early part of the race, with a fresh westerly breeze anticipated in the latter. Competitors can expect a warm welcome at the Cercle de la Voile de Dieppe (CVD) and Dieppe is also well known for its superb seafood restaurants and the 17th century Chateau de Dieppe, now a museum with a strong maritime collection.

Racing under the IRC Rating System, a wide variety of yachts will be racing from Great Britain, France and the Netherlands. IMOCA 60, Artemis Ocean Racing, skippered by Mikey Ferguson is the hot favourite for Line Honours. In IRC One, Edward Broadway's Ker 40, Hooligan VII is the fastest yacht on IRC rating. RORC Committee member, Michel Peretie, will be racing his new French JND39, Stamina while RORC Vice Commodore Steven Anderson, racing Corby 40 Cracklin Rosie, is relishing the prospect of resuming the battle with past RORC Commodore Mike Greville, racing his Ker 39 Erivale III.

“When the sun comes up on Saturday morning, I hope that Erivale will be in sight!” enthused Steven Anderson. “We are just a fraction of a point ahead of Mike and his team for the championship and we have enjoyed the friendly rivalry over several seasons. Unfortunately through illness, we have had a late start to the season and whilst winning the championship maybe beyond our capabilities, we will focus on winning against boats around us. Cracklin Rosie and Erivale are very well matched. The highlight of the season for Cracklin Rosie will definitely be the 400-mile Île d'Ouessant Race. It is a fantastic race course that we have not done before.”

In IRC Two, three of the top four yachts are in action. The Army Sailing Association's J/111 British Soldier has a slender lead for the class from Sailing Logic's First 40, Rocket Dog II. Gilles Fournier's French J/133 Pintia is also competing and will be hoping to follow up on their overall victories in last month's Cervantes Trophy Race and Myth of Malham Race.

In IRC Three, Delamare and Mordret's French JPK 10.80 leads the class by less than a point from Louis-Marie Dussere's Raging Bee. RORC Rear Commodore Nick Martin, racing British J/105 Diablo-J is third for the season and Jean-Eudes Renier's French JPK 10.80, Shaitan is fourth. This group of boats have been enjoying a tremendous battle in the first half of the season, as Eric Modret from Dream Pearls explains.

“We are enjoying some great racing as we have always done with the RORC, Dream Pearls is based in Hamble because the championship is the best racing for us by far. The competition with the other boats in our class is very tough and sometimes the weather can be as well. For the Myth of Malham Race, we were leading the class at Eddystone and then we lost the breeze and watched as so many boats went past us. It is a little too early to look at the weather for the Morgan Cup but it could be another light race. However, the weather is changing a lot this weekend, so who knows, we might just get the first windy race of the season. After the Morgan Cup, Dream Pearls will sail to Wicklow for the Round Ireland Race and then onto Cork Week for the IRC European Championship.”

In IRC Four, nine teams will be competing, including second overall for the RORC Season's Points Championship, Rob Nelson's British J/105, Bigfoot and third overall, Noel Racine's French JPK 10.10 Foggy Dew. RORC Committee member, Stuart Greenfield's Half Tonner Silver Shamrock will be hoping to make it two class wins in a row, after last month's victory in the Myth of Malham. Ten yachts racing in IRC three and IRC four will be racing Two-Handed.

The RORC Myth of Malham Race will start from the Royal Yacht Squadron Line from 1900 BST (GMT+1) on Friday June 10, 2016.

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