RORC TRANSATLANTIC RACE
Henri de Bokay’s Elliott 52 Rafale (GER), skippered by Philipp Kadelbach, finished the race on the 18th of January. Rafale became the sixth monohull in the race to finish in under 11 days. Rafale’s corrected time under IRC gives the team third place in IRC Zero, behind Teasing Machine and Black Pearl. This was Henri de Bokay’s second RORC Transatlantic Race having been part of Mike Slade’s Leopard 3 crew, taking Monohull Line Honours in 2016. Rafale was formerly Tilmar Hansen’s Outsider.
“This has been a different experience to Leopard, but just as enjoyable,” commented de Bokay. “I told my old friend Tilmar, I wanted to own a boat capable of this race and eventually bought the boat from him. I am a long-term member of the Royal Ocean Racing Club and I suppose the Rafale crew is old school; we are family and friends enjoying racing. Now we are in the Caribbean the adventures will continue and we are really looking forward to the RORC Caribbean 600 in Antigua next month.”
Johannes Schwarz’s Volvo 70 Green Dragon (AUT) took Line Honours in the 2021 RORC Transatlantic Race. This year, Johannes was on board, but the skipper was the youngest in the race; Cathal Mahon from Galway Ireland. Green Dragon completed the race on the 19th of January in just over 11 days. Green Dragon was over-subscribed for charter guests resulting in the maximum number of crew allowed under IRC racing the boat. Twenty one crew, many of them making their first RORC Transatlantic Race, were on board. The multinational crew came from 12 different countries. Two cases of beer were required for the thirsty arrivals!
Arto Linnervuo’s Infiniti 52 Tulikettu (FIN) finished the RORC Transatlantic Race on the 20th of January in an elapsed time of 11 days 10 hours 33 mins 46 secs. This was Tulikettu’s first race and the boat sports not only a canting keel, but also DSS side foils. Having suffered some breakages, including sail damage and to the goose-neck fitting, Tulikettu was not able to race full-on for the second half of the race. However, Arto and the all-Finish team were delighted to complete the race. Their ambitions to race in 2022 were thwarted when they were forced to abandon the boat in training, but miraculously recovered and repaired it to compete this year.
Teams that have finished the RORC Transatlantic Race have been enjoying the hospitality of Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina and the award-winning Caribbean island of Grenada. Eight teams are still racing and looking forward to joining them. Marie Tabarly’s 73ft Ketch Pen Duick VI (FRA) and Andrew & Sam Hall’s Lombard 46 Pata Negra (GBR) are having a great duel 450 miles from the finish and are expected on the 22nd of January. Pata Negra is ranked first in IRC One, with Peter & Duncan Bacon’s Sun Fast 3300 Sea Bear (GBR) in second and Laurent Courbin’s First 53 Yagiza (FRA) in third.
Culen & Jakubcik’s Akilaria 40 Sabre II is 565 miles from the finish, and Lionel Regnier’s Briand 58 L’Esprit d’Equipe is 741 miles from a warm welcome in Grenada. Global Yacht Racing’s First 47.7 EH01 (GBR), skippered by Neil Maher, is just under 1,000 miles from Grenada. EH01’s Prue Nash commented by satellite on the 19th of January:
“We’re making good progress in the light winds and during happy hour on Tuesday (17th January), we had a party to celebrate being half way across. Jenn and Frank made some delicious lemon drizzle fairy cakes and we decorated silly hats for a crew photo. We’ve been able to sail directly to Grenada for a few days now, which everyone is excited about. It’s great to watch the distance to waypoint tick down.”
The Royal Ocean Racing Club supports all manner of teams to enter the RORC Season’s Points Championship, of which the RORC Transatlantic Race is part of. This year’s race has the first all-women team racing in IRC Two-Handed. Follow the joy and pain of Kate Cope and Claire Dresser racing Sun Fast 3200 Purple Mist (GBR) by checking out their daily blog: http://blog.mailasail.com/purplemist
For full coverage of the RORC Transatlantic Race, including race updates and stories from the teams, follow the Royal Ocean Racing Club on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. For regular updates including satellite tracking go to: www.rorctransatlantic.rorc.org