Day 3 and 670 Miles of Separation

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2016 rtr RORC Boat Aragon JamesMitchell

 Team Aragon before the start: Arco Van Nieuwland & Andries Verde's Dutch Marten 72, Aragon © RORC/James Mitchell

28 November 2016 – 0900GMT Report

By daybreak on the third day of the RORC Transatlantic Race, Lloyd Thornburg's American MOD70 Phaedo3, skippered by Brian Thompson was continuing to charge south, approaching the Cape Verde islands. 670 miles to the north, Giovanni Soldini's Italian MOD70 Maserati was continuing their ascent north. The remainder of the fleet look to be hedging their bets for the moment, staying close to the rhumb line, save Mike Slade's 100ft (30m) Maxi Leopard 3, which is stalking Maserati's lonely trail. Both teams are looking to slingshot the edge of a massive low pressure system in the North Atlantic.

MOD70 Disagreement - Day Two

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 Lloyd Thornburg's MOD70 Phaedo3 at the start of the RORC Transatlantic Race, Lanzarote © RORC/James Mitchell.

As dawn broke on the second day of the RORC Transatlantic Race, the majority of the fleet were still to round Tenerife, the last mark of the course before the international racing fleet head out into the open waters of the Atlantic. Land effects were still the main influence on tactics and strategy, with some big gains and losses in the fleet overnight.

Ideal Conditions for the Start of the RORC Transatlantic Race

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2016 rtr start james mitchellPerfect Conditions at the start of the RORC Transatlantic Race - photo RORC/James Mitchell

The 3rd edition of the RORC Transatlantic Race started without a hitch in ideal conditions outside Marina Lanzarote. With a gentle breeze and slight sea state, it was a comfortable start to the 2,865 nautical mile ocean race to Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina in Grenada, West Indies. The three fastest yachts have chosen to head north of the rhumb line. Once they have rounded Tenerife, the decision to continue north or dive south will become clear.

RORC CEO, Eddie Warden Owen watched the fleet depart: "It's fantastic to see the fleet taking off on the way to Grenada from Lanzarote. The wind is blowing from the north at about 10 knots and they’re reaching across the starting line. We have got a huge variety of boats; fabulous boats of 100ft and more, like Leopard and Path, to Class40s and of course the amazing multihulls, Maserati and Phaedo that will be having a match race all the way across the Atlantic. I am delighted to say we have an increase in entry every year and we know that this race will grow over a period of time. The quality of the boats and the variety shows that the RORC Transatlantic Race is going to be popular with a lot of racing teams."

Follow the Race

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The sun sets over Marina Lanzarote the night before the start of the RORC Transatlantic Race - photo RORC/James Mitchell

Today (Saturday 26 November), 14 yachts from 40-112ft (12-34m) will take the start of the third edition of the RORC Transatlantic Race from Lanzarote, Canary Islands headed for Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina on the spice island of Grenada, Caribbean; some 2,865 nautical miles across the Atlantic.

Competitors from 20 different nations will line up for the start at midday (1200 GMT) off Marina Lanzarote where the fleet have been generously hosted by Calero Marinas for the past week. The IRC classes and Class40s are scheduled to start at 1200 GMT, followed 10 minutes later by the two MOD70s; Lloyd Thornburg's Phaedo and Giovanni Soldini's Italian Maserati, making an impressive sight for the spectators on and off the water as the fleet heads to the turning mark off Puerto Calero Marina and between the islands of Lanzarote and Fuerteventura to the south. The fleet must then pass Tenerife before venturing into the Atlantic to finish outside Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina, Grenada.

Crew enjoy RORC Transatlantic Race gala dinner in Puerto Calero

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The crews were introduced at the Gala Dinner, Amura Restaurant, Puerto Calero - photo RORC/James MitchellThe crews were introduced at the Gala Dinner, Amura Restaurant, Puerto Calero - photo RORC/James Mitchell

Photos from Gala Dinner in RORC Photo Gallery HERE: http://gallery.rorc.org/v/2016/RORC+Transatlantic+Race+2016/

With two nights to go until the start of the race, crews enjoyed a wonderful dinner yesterday evening at the RORC Transatlantic Race Gala Dinner. Held at one of Lanzarote's finest restaurants, around 140 crews from every yacht in the race enjoyed a three-course supper with fine wines at Amura Restaurant in Puerto Calero, courtesy of our hosts in Lanzarote, Calero Marinas and the Calero Family.
RORC Racing Manager, Nick Elliott, introduced Michael Boyd, Commodore of Royal Ocean Racing Club who had news about the future of the race:
"This evening we are the fortunate guests of José Juan Calero and his family who have provided wonderful hospitality to all the skippers, crews and the Royal Ocean Racing Club since the initiation of the RORC Transatlantic Race. Without them the race would simply not take place. On this side of the Atlantic we have the support of the Canary Islands and Lanzarote Government and Tourist Boards, and on the other side, the support of the Government of Grenada and Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina, as well as Westerhall Rums. The RORC is very grateful to all of these partners.