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Transatlantic Race 2015 - The Largest Group on its Way

Brigand, Siren and Lady B in the second start of the Transatlantic Race 2015. (credit Daniel Forster)The second of the three staggered start dates for the 50-boat Transatlantic Race 2015 got underway today into a brisk southwesterly breeze just after 2 p.m. local time.

A line of thunderstorms, which had initially been forecast to come through at mid-day, passed over Newport just as the crews of 20 entries were waking to begin final preparations for the 2,800-mile race from Newport, R.I., to The Lizard off England's southwestern tip.

By the time the first cannon sounded at 1:50 p.m., the sun was shining and the breeze was blowing, and the competitors reveled in the ideal conditions. First off the starting line were the five Class 40s, purpose-designed ocean racing yachts that are sailing with between two and four crew onboard, less than half what any other boat in the race is carrying.

The Class 40s are the smallest boats in the race but are likely to provide the most intense competition. The boats are very even in speed and are racing in a level class, which means the first boat across the finish line will win class honors.

Read more... [Transatlantic Race 2015 - The Largest Group on its Way]
Transatlantic Race 2015 - Off and Running (First of Three Starts)

A fleet of 13 boats took off for England today from Newport, R.I.'s start of the Transatlantic Race 2015 - photo credit Daniel ForsterNEWPORT, R.I. (June 28, 2015) - An intense low-pressure system rolling up the Atlantic Coast put competitors and race officials on edge for the 48 hours leading up to the first start of the Transatlantic Race 2015, from Newport, R.I., to The Lizard off the southwest coast of England. Contingency plans were made by both groups, with the option of delaying the start for a few hours getting serious consideration. The storm passed through overnight, however, leaving behind excellent, albeit unseasonably cool, conditions and a favorable boost from the outgoing current and the run-off from Saturday night's heavy rain.

A baker's dozen of boats got underway in Start 1, crossing the starting line set off the Castle Hill Lighthouse at the entrance to Narragansett Bay's East Passage just after 2 p.m. Twenty-one boats will get underway on the afternoon of Wednesday, July 1, and the four fastest yachts in the race will make up the final start on Sunday, July 5.

The boats in Start 1 were fairly conservative on their approach to the line. This race, at 2,800-miles in length, is the ultimate ocean marathon; slow and steady is almost always the best mindset for the onset of such an adventure, which could take two weeks, or longer, to complete.

Read more... [Transatlantic Race 2015 - Off and Running (First of Three Starts)]
Recent Volvo Ocean Race winner Ian Walker, double silver Olympic medalist gives his views on the upcoming Rolex Fastnet Race

Ian Walker - Photo - Ian Roman/Abu Dhabi Ocean RacingEnjoy the race everyone - Ian Walker

"I am sure it won't be long before I get back on a boat again. I nearly did the Rolex Fastnet this year but I managed to stop myself. I decided it was more important to have a family holiday," says Ian Walker after winning the 2014/2015 Volvo Ocean Race after almost nine months of racing.

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing skipper, Ian Walker has become the first British skipper to win the Volvo Ocean Race. Ian is a long standing RORC member and competed in his first Fastnet Race in 1997.

"My first Fastnet Race was in a Mumm 36, the last race of the Admiral's Cup. I remember that for a lot of days I was sitting on the side of a very small boat getting very wet, but we won that race overall and on handicap, which was pretty cool. I did a very light race on the TP52, Patches and I think we led at the Rock (Fastnet), but by the time we got to the finish, we were pretty much last on handicap as the wind came in from behind to help the small boats.

"I have done two races on Volvo 70s and set the record in 2011 with Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing. That year it was quite a cool race, a slow start but it got really windy. From the Scilly Isles to the finish it was pretty much 30 knots and full-on reaching.

Read the full article on the Rolex Fastnet Race Minisite

Morgan Cup Race Report - Tonnerre Takes the Win

 at twilight during the 2015 Morgan Cup Race - photo Frank Gerber/Tonnerre 4Start: 1900 BST Friday 19th June 2015

Course: 125 nautical mile race from Eastern Solent to Guernsey

Organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club in association with the Royal Thames Yacht Club, the Guernsey Yacht Club and the Royal Yacht Squadron.

108 yachts crossed the start line for the 2015 Morgan Cup Race, the seventh race of the Royal Ocean Racing Club's season points championship. Although the race started at 7pm on Friday evening, due to the Summer Solstice, the fleet barely sailed more than a few hours in darkness. The gentle northerly wind, which eventually backed to the west, gave a spinnaker run for most of the 125 mile course. The majority of the fleet finished the race on Saturday afternoon, perfect timing to enjoy the hospitality of the Guernsey Yacht Club. Tide always plays a part in races to the Channel Islands and this year's Morgan Cup Race was no exception.

Piet Vroon's Dutch Ker 51, Tonnerre 4, sailed by Frank Gerber, was the overall winner after IRC time correction, with British IMOCA 60, Artemis Ocean Racing, skippered by Mikey Ferguson, taking Line Honours and second overall under IRC. Arnaud Delamare and Eric Mordret's French JPK 10.80, Dream Pearls was third overall.

Read more... [Morgan Cup Race Report - Tonnerre Takes the Win]
The Morgan Cup Race - Saturday Morning update

2015 Morgan Cup Race - Spinnakers at Dusk - photo Mike Jones - Hooligan VIIStart: 1900 BST Friday 19th June 2015

Course: 125 nautical mile race from Eastern Solent to Guernsey.

The RORC Season's Points Championship has once again produced a magnificent fleets of yachts with 112 yachts entered for the Morgan Cup Race, which started on Friday 19th June from the Royal Yacht Squadron Line bound for St. Peter Port, Guernsey. The huge variety of yachts includes high performance carbon fibre flyers, production yachts and classics form days gone by. The fleet was a tremendous sight as they raced east, out of the Solent, under spinnaker in a moderate north westerly breeze of less than 10 knots.

The wind was forecast to back to the west and as a result, after leaving the Solent, the majority of the fleet remained east of the rhumb line anticipating the shift but 12 hours into the race the wind shift has not materialised and remained from the northwest increasing in speed slightly during the night, affording the race fleet a spinnaker run across the English Channel.

At 0700, Saturday, 20 June

12 hours into the race, Mikey Ferguson's IMOCA 60, Artemis Ocean Racing was less than a mile from the finish in very light winds but a building fair tide. Peter Newlands' British First 40.7, Anticipation racing in IRC 2, was 30 miles from completing the 125-mile race, and the provisional race leader, after time correction under IRC. Noel Racine's French JPK 10.10, Foggy Dew, racing in IRC 4, was just a few miles astern of Anticipation. After IRC time correction, Foggy Dew was less than a minute behind the race leader. Eric Mordret's French JPK 10.80, Raphello was provisionally third overall, and leading IRC 3. Louis-Marie Dussere's JPK 10.10, Raging Bee was the provisional leader of the IRC Two Handed Class.

The vast majority of the RORC fleet, competing in the Morgan Cup Race, is expected to finish by early this afternoon. A full report will follow after the race.

Morgan Cup 2015 - Tracking

2015 Morgan Cup - Tracking System Morgan Cup 2015 - Tracking

The tracking system for the Morgan Cup is now available. Please note: We are not using individual YB Trackers; this experimental tracking uses AIS tranmissions from the boats and therefore is only as good as the boats AIS installation and the other limitations of AIS, including transmission range.
Click here to open the Race Player Application.

Lightweight options (Text-only or HTML leaderboard, Expedition/MaxSea format)

For slow or mobile connections, there are a range of lightweight options available here:

The Rolex Fastnet Race - The world’s largest, most diverse offshore race fleet

2013 Rolex Fastnet Race - The fleet leaving the Solent - Photo Rolex/Kurt ArrigoTwo months out from the start of the Rolex Fastnet Race, the Royal Ocean Racing Club has made public the latest entry list for its biennial 600 mile race from Cowes to Plymouth, via the Fastnet Rock, starting at noon on Sunday 16th August.
The entry list makes for impressive reading in terms of scale, diversity and quality of the fleet taking part, confirming the Rolex Fastnet Race's position as the world's biggest and most popular offshore race by far.
As of today there are 387 boats entered with a further 74 on the waiting list. If all the boats currently entered were put bow to stern, the line from Cowes would stretch two thirds of the way across the Solent to the mainland (1635.75m).
The bulk of the fleet - 340 entries to be precise - are competing under IRC for the race's overall prize, the Fastnet Challenge Cup. With the two American maxis: Jim and Kristy Hinze Clark's 100ft Comanche and George David's Rambler 88, due to be the pace setters on the water, the IRC fleet will, in due course, be divided into classes and class sub-divisions.
The remaining 47 are not competing under IRC but represent some of the world's leading professional race boat classes. These include the latest generation foil-born IMOCA 60s, lining up for their first major event in the build-up to next year's Vendée Globe, plus a large and highly competitive fleet of Class40s. Then there is the 13 strong multihull class featuring Dona Bertarelli and Yann Guichard's 40m long trimaran, Spindrift 2, the world's fastest offshore sailing yacht; in 2009 she covered 908.2 nm (ie 50% further than the Rolex Fastnet Race course) in 24 hours at an average speed of 37.84 knots and in 2011, as Banque Populaire V, set the Rolex Fastnet Race multihull record.
The average size of yacht competing in this year's Rolex Fastnet Race is 44.34ft (13.52m) with Spindrift 2 being the largest multihull, Comanche and Leopard the longest monohulls at 100ft and at the smallest end of the fleet, three 30ft yachts including Myles and Ashley Perrin's Capo 30 Santana from California.
In IRC rating terms, Comanche and Rambler 88 lead the charge with Time Correction Coefficients (TCC) of 1.973 and 1.869 respectively, while the slowest boat in the fleet is Tony Harwood's Nicholson 38, Volante, on 0.864 (the minimum permitted TCC this year is 0.850).
An impressive 52 entries are sailing two handed, up from 45 in 2013 when the race was won for the first time in its history by a two handed crew: French father and son, Pascal and Alexis Loison aboard their JPK 10.10, Night and Day.

To read the full story head to the Rolex Fastnet Race minisite

MUSTO appointed as RORC Official Clothing and Footwear Supplier

RORC appoint Musto as Official Clothing and Footwear SupplierThe Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC) is delighted to announce MUSTO as the Official Clothing Supplier for the Cowes and London-based club and the Rolex Fastnet Race.

For more than 50 years, MUSTO have proved their expertise in technical sailing clothing and footwear and the RORC, celebrating its 90th anniversary is delighted to announce this new long-term partnership.
MUSTO will produce RORC insignia and event merchandise as well as Rolex Fastnet Race branded merchandise for the 2015 race.
"We are delighted to be working with MUSTO which designs the world's leading offshore sailing performance wear to help sailors perform at their peak. As a company MUSTO is perfectly aligned to the requirements of our members. Like the RORC, they are committed to high standards and have led the way in development, design and innovation," said RORC Chief Executive, Eddie Warden Owen. "

RORC members will receive a range of privilege benefits on Musto products and a specialist service in the production of branded team clothing for their crew.

Read more... [MUSTO appointed as RORC Official Clothing and Footwear Supplier]
The De Guingand Bowl Sparkles

 ANT3066A good mix of 89 British and French yachts started the Royal Ocean Racing Club's De Guingand Bowl Race on Friday evening, heading (eventually) to a sunny Cherbourg. Racing under the IRC rating system, the French JPK 10.80 Courrier du Leon sailed by Géry Trentesaux was the overall winner. This was his third win in the RORC Season's Points Championship, and he retains the overall lead for the 13 race series.

"It was a great race with a beautiful start, we were under spinnaker all the way to Brighton." commented Géry Trentesaux. "We had a good upwind course around the Isle of Wight to the Needles, I think that we did very well upwind. Courrier Du Leon is a good offshore boat, not especially fast in the light downwind but upwind the boat has good performance. I have been sailing with good crew for 20 years and we have three Figaro sailors on board for this championship, who are great all-round sailors and comfortable in a smaller boat. This race did suit the smaller yachts, as we arrived in Cherbourg at maximum speed with the tide; but judging the tide in the Channel is very difficult as the wind can vary so much. The course was excellent for this race, perfect for the conditions."

Le Havre skipper Noel Racine, racing JPK 10.10 Foggy Dew, was the winner of IRC Four and second overall. Louis-Marie Dussere, also from Normandy, racing JPK 10.10, Raging Bee, was the winner of the IRC Two Handed Class. Raging Bee now has a commanding lead in the two handed division for the season. Michel Peretie's French A40, Stamina III, was the winner of IRC Two, taking line honours for the class.

Read more... [The De Guingand Bowl Sparkles]
Latest maxis to compete in the Rolex Fastnet Race

Comanche and Rambler lined up for the first time in the 2015 Les Voiles de St. Barth © Christophe JouanyWhile it may not be the event's ultimate prize, the monohull battle for line honours in the Rolex Fastnet Race is always hotly contested, coming with considerable bragging rights. This year's race from Cowes to Plymouth via the Fastnet Rock, coinciding with the 90th anniversary of the event's organiser, the Royal Ocean Racing Club, will see the world's two very newest maxis jockeying for this prize. Both belong to American captains of industry and both were launched last autumn.

Favourite is the 100ft long Comanche owned by Jim and Kristy Hinze Clark. Clark, the Silicon Graphics and Netscape founder, has owned several high profile superyachts and the magnificent J-Class yacht, Hanuman, but his latest craft is a state of the art ocean racer designed by VPLP-Verdier, best known for their IMOCA 60 designs. In fact Comanche strongly resembles a scaled-up version of MACIF, winner of the last Vendee Globe, with a powerful hull, canting keel, twin daggerboards and rudders and numerous other go-faster features.

"The Rolex Fastnet Race is one of the goals for Comanche as one of the `Great Races' around the globe," Clark explains. "Comanche was built to do two things: Win line honours and, if Mother Nature cooperates, try to break records. Let's hope that we succeed with both, but I know there will be lots of very strong competition!"

Read more... [Latest maxis to compete in the Rolex Fastnet Race]
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Event Minisites

Rolex Fastnet Race
Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup
RORC Caribbean 600 Race
Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race
RORC Transatlantic Race
Transatlantic Race 2015

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