Leopard tracks its prey

on . Posted in 2016 Race Updates

2016 rtr leopard dockside banner arthur daniel

Dockside at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis, Grenada: Mike Slade's Maxi, Leopard 3 secures Monohull Line Honours and the International Maxi Association (IMA) Trophy in the 2016 RORC Transatlantic Race © RORC/Arthur Daniel


7 December Day 12 Report

Mike Slade's British Maxi Leopard 3 crossed the finish line outside Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina, Grenada at 07h 22m 37s on 7th December 2016 GMT, taking Monohull Line Honours and winning the International Maxi Association (IMA) trophy for the 2016 RORC Transatlantic Race. The RORC Transatlantic Trophy will be awarded to the yacht posting the best corrected time under IRC. Leopard 3 has set the bar and must now wait to see if their corrected time can be beaten.

“This is only my fourth transatlantic race since I started ocean racing 27 years ago. In the past I just didn’t have many opportunities,” explains Mike Slade. “Racing across the Atlantic is very special; you are at sea for many days and by the time you have finished you have really gelled together with the crew. In the middle of the Atlantic you are miles away from anybody and you can let the whole damn world get on with itself. We are having fun, racing hard as a team and that is a very nice feeling as it takes you out of your normal self.

“We are delighted to have taken Monohull Line Honours but the challenge is the overall win after IRC time correction. We have got to keep our fingers crossed and that is why we pushed hard right to the end. Although the rest of the fleet is many miles behind us, we were very conscious of them all the time. It was also great to race against the ghost of Nomad IV; at one stage we were ahead, but unfortunately we didn't see any trade winds until the last 24 hours. However it was exhilarating and at times quite scary, especially at night blasting along at over 20 knots in the pitch black. You are really flying along on the edge and if you get it wrong, you can spin out.”

2016 rtr leopard coming into grenada Arthur Daniel

British Maxi, Leopard 3 makes her way to Port Louis Marina after completing the 2016 RORC Transatlantic Race © RORC/Arthur Daniel

2016 rtr Leopard mikeslade andrewmcirvne Arthur Daniel

Mike Slade is greeted on the dock in Grenada by RORC Admiral and IMA Secretary General, Andrew McIrvine © RORC/Arthur Daniel

Leopard 3 were enjoying a brunch at the aptly named Victory Bar and Restaurant, Port Louis Marina. The conversation was very much towards the competition for the overall win on corrected time. The biggest threat to Leopard 3's corrected time is Arco Van Nieuwland and Andries Verder's Marten 72, Aragon. The Dutch Maxi still has over 500 miles to go and at the moment their estimated corrected time is five hours outside the benchmark set by Leopard 3. However, with the trade winds re-established, the opportunity for Aragon to better Leopard 3 is a very real one. Infiniti 46, Maverick, skippered by Oliver Cotterell also has a chance to snatch overall victory.

Track the race:  http://rorctransatlantic.rorc.org/tracking/2016-fleet-tracking.html

All the latest news can be found at:  http://rorctransatlantic.rorc.org

Photos: http://gallery.rorc.org/v/2016/RORC+Transatlantic+Race+2016/Finishing+yachts+RORC+TR+2016/

Blogs from the crews at sea: http://rorctransatlantic.rorc.org/news/2016-blogs/