It’s a Wrap - 2018 RORC Transatlantic Race Concludes

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2018 rtr finish dock kuka adOverall winners of the 2018 RORC Transatlantic Race, Kuka3 © RORC/Arthur Daniel

The 5th edition of the RORC Transatlantic Race, in association with the International Maxi Association (IMA), started from Calero Marinas - Marina Lanzarote on Saturday 24 November 2018. Prior to the start of the 3,000 nautical mile race, a full programme of social activities included a welcome reception hosted by the Real Club Náutico de Arrecife, and a gala farewell dinner at the 18th century Arrecife fortress, Castillo de San José. After an initial period of light winds, the fleet enjoyed perfect trade wind conditions for the race.

Overall Winner – Kuka3 (SUI)
Franco Niggeler's Swiss Cookson 50 Kuka3, skippered by Roberto Chuny Bermúdez de Castro, won the RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy after overcoming technical issues and a fire on board to post the best IRC corrected time. Franco was presented with the antique silver trophy by Grenadian Minister for Tourism & Civil Aviation, Dr. Clarice Modeste-Curwen, M.P. at a ceremony held at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina, Grenada.

"This was my first Atlantic crossing and it could not have been better than this," commented Franco Niggeler. "Grenada is a beautiful island with beautiful people and we can't be happier. It is a wonderful race, well organised by RORC, and not forgetting Calero Marinas - Marina Lanzarote. A big thank you to my team.”
Multihull Match Race

Kali concludes the 2018 RORC Transatlantic Race

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2018 rtr kali finish banner adThe crew from Kali dockside at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina © Arthur Daniel

Benedikt Clauberg’s First 47.7 Kali, owned by the Swiss Ocean Racing Club and skippered by Corinne Wirth, completed the 5th edition of the RORC Transatlantic Race, finishing on Thursday 13th December in an elapsed time of 19 days 2 hrs 18 mins and 4 secs.

The six crew, led by Benedikt Clauberg and Corinne Wirth, with Martin Weber, Hans Peter Berger, Jessica Richardson and Kyriakos Spiliopoulos were happy to finally hear the words “Welcome to Grenada!” as they crossed the finish line and headed for the dock at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina.

Marina Manager Charlotte Bonin had the beer on ice and Nikoyan Roberts from the Grenada Tourism Authority greeted the team with a gift basket of Grenadian goods, including their world famous chocolates and highly prized rum.

Cracking the beers in Grenada

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Second overall after IRC time correction for the smallest boat in the competition: Trevor Middleton's Sun Fast 3600 Black Sheep.  Trevor Middleton, Jacob Carter, Joe Simmons, Paul Hardy, Matthew Morton © RORC/Arthur Daniel

Second overall after IRC time correction for the smallest boat in the competition: Trevor Middleton's Sun Fast 3600 Black Sheep. 

Trevor Middleton, Jacob Carter, Joe Simmons, Paul Hardy, Matthew Morton © RORC/Arthur Daniel

 Sirius, Black Sheep and Xtra Staerk have joined the roll of honour for the 5th edition of the RORC Transatlantic Race, arriving in Grenada to a warm welcome and iced cold beers. Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina provide centre stage for the arrivals on their superyacht dock, and Marina Manager Charlotte Bonin keeps the beer on ice until the boats arrive. Nikoyan Roberts from the Grenada Tourism Authority also greets every boat with a gift basket of Grenadian goods, including their world famous chocolates and highly prized rum.

Kuka3 lift the RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy

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Franco Niggeler's Swiss Cookson 50 Kuka3, skippered by Roberto Chuny Bermúdez de Castro has been announced as the overall winner of the 2018 RORC Transatlantic Race.

2018 rtr finish dock kuka adFranco Niggeler's Cookson 50 Kuka3 lift the 2018 RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy after setting the best time after IRC correction © RORC/Arthur Daniel

Franco Niggeler was presented with the RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy by Grenadian Minister for Tourism & Civil Aviation, Dr. Clarice Modeste-Curwen, M.P. at a ceremony held at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina, Grenada. Whilst several yachts are still racing, none of them can beat the time set by Kuka3 after IRC time correction. 

"This was my first Atlantic crossing and it could not have been better than this," commented Franco Niggeler. "Grenada is a beautiful island with beautiful people, and we can't be happier. It is a wonderful race, well organised by RORC, and not forgetting Calero Marinas - Marina Lanzarote; and a big thank you to my team."

Video Interview - Hydra

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Henrik Bergesen's Norwegian Class40 Hydra finish in Grenada. Skippered by Tristan Kinloch, Hydra finished the RORC Transatlantic Race at 22:02:23 UTC on Sunday, 09 December in an elapsed time of 15 days 10 hrs 2 mins 23 secs.

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Hydra happy in Grenada

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2018 rtr hydra finish adTeam Hydra Class40 finishes in Grenada: Pip Hare, Henrik Bergesen, Paul Peggs, Tristan Kinloch © RORC/Arthur Daniel

Henrik Bergesen's Norwegian Class40 Hydra, skippered by Tristan Kinloch, finished the RORC Transatlantic Race at 22:02:23 UTC on Sunday, 09 December in an elapsed time of 15 days 10 hrs 2 mins 23 secs. Hydra was runner-up in the Class40 Division to Catherine Pourre's Eärendil. Early in the race, Hydra was very much in contention for the class win until a rudder problem forced the team to make a pit stop in the Cape Verde Islands. After completing the race, Hydra's team received a warm welcome on the dock from RORC CEO Eddie Warden Owen and Race Officer Steve Cole. Marina Manager Charlotte Bonin greeted the team with ice cold beers and presented the crew with a basket of Grenadian goods, including rum and chocolates, courtesy of the Grenada Tourism Authority.

It's been an epic race; absolutely fantastic," commented Henrik Bergesen dockside at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina. "I have had a great crew and we had perfect conditions. We had an issue with the rudders, but we came back and did a good job; we kept going and got back into second place, so I am very happy about that. After eating freeze dried food and desalinated water, the beer tastes really good. We are looking forward to some real food; barbecue chicken I think! After this race, we're well prepared for the RORC Caribbean 600 in February and it should also be great fun."

Class40 Eärendil celebrate in Grenada

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RORC Transatlantic 2018Dec8Earndil1

Class40 Line Honours for the 2018 RORC Transatlantic Race - Catherine Pourre's French Class40 Eärendil makes her way to the dock at C&N Port Louis Marina, Grenada © RORC/Arthur Daniel

Catherine Pourre's Class40 Eärendil finished the 2018 RORC Transatlantic Race on Saturday 08 December at 04:10:18 taking Class40 Line Honours for the 3,000 mile race from Calero Marinas Marina Lanzarote to Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina, Grenada.

After completing the race, Catherine and crew members Pietro Luciana and Gery Atkins received a warm welcome from RORC Race Officer Steve Cole, and Marina Manager Charlotte Bonin greeted the team with ice cold beers. Nikoyan Roberts presented Eärendil with a basket of Grenadian goods, including rum and chocolates, courtesy of the Grenada Tourism Authority. There was also a surprise welcome on the dock from friends Halvard Mabire and Miranda Merron - who was fresh from her Route du Rhum adventures with Class40 Campagne de France. In the 2016 race, Campagne de France had won class ahead of Eärendil, but this year it was Catherine Pourre's turn to celebrate finishing the race in pole position for the Class40 Division in a time that was over three days quicker than 2016.

Kuka3 Fight to the Finish

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RORC Transatlantic 2018 Dec 6th kuka 3 Arthur Daniel Low Res 32Celebrations in Grenada after completing the RORC Transatlantic Race in an elapsed time of 12 days 5 hrs 34 mins and 35 secs, Franco Niggeler's Cookson 50 Kuka3 is in a strong position to win the RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy © RORC/Arthur Daniel

Franco Niggeler's Swiss Cookson 50 Kuka3, skippered by Roberto Chuny Bermúdez de Castro, overcame technical issues and a fire on board to post the best IRC corrected time so far in the RORC Transatlantic Race. After over 12 days of racing in the Atlantic Ocean, the crew looked tired but elated to arrive in Grenada.

Kuka3 finished the RORC Transatlantic Race on Thursday 06 December at 17:34:35 UTC in an elapsed time of 12 days 5 hrs 34 mins and 35 secs and was the second yacht racing under IRC to finish the race, after Pier Luigi Loro Piana's Supermaxi My Song.

Kuka3 has set the best time after IRC correction and is in a very strong position to win the race overall and lift the RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy.

My Song set the bar, Kuka3 count the minutes

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DAY 11 - 1200 UTC 05 December

Kuka3, Franco Niggeler's Swiss Cookson 50 Kuka3 is currently on pace to win the race overall © RORCKuka3, Franco Niggeler's Swiss Cookson 50 Kuka3 is currently on pace to win the race overall © RORC

Pier Luigi Loro Piana's Supermaxi My Song has not only set a new monohull race record for the RORC Transatlantic Race, but also the benchmark for the remaining boats to beat racing under the IRC Rating Rule. The best corrected time will win the race outright and lift the RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy.

Franco Niggeler's Swiss Cookson 50 Kuka3, skippered by Roberto 'Chuny' Bermudez de Castro was 287 miles from the finish at 1200 UTC on 5 December. Kuka3 was showing an impressive turn of speed on the YB Tracker, averaging over 14 knots, and presumably surfing down Atlantic rollers at some pace. Kuka3 must cross the finish line by 18:58:08 UTC tomorrow (06 December). Currently at their current pace, Kuka3 is expected to be well inside the required time.

VIDEO Interviews - Monohull Record with owner & navigator

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Interviews, Dockside Grenada

My Song, Baltic 130 - Pier Luigi Loro Piana (owner)
and Navigator - Nacho Postigo (English and Spanish)

Pier Luigi Loro Piana's Supermaxi My Song finished the 2018 RORC Transatlantic Race on Tuesday 04 December 2018 at 17:47:11 UTC taking Monohull Line Honours. The Baltic 130 owned by Pier Luigi Loro Piana, a member of the International Maxi Association (IMA), has also set a new Monohull Race Record after completing the 3,000 mile race between Lanzarote and Grenada in an elapsed time of 10 days 5 hrs 47 mins 11 secs, shaving 1hr 19mins 48 secs off the previous monohull race record set in the 2015 race by Jean-Paul Riviere's French Finot-Conq 100, Nomad IV.

2018 RORC TRANSATLANTIC RACE - Interview with Pier Luigi Loro Piana, owner of Baltic 130 My Song (ITA)
© RORC/picturesofgrenada.com

RORC Transatlantic Record for My Song

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mysong1

Celebrations in Grenada: Clutching the magnificent International Maxi Association Transatlantic Trophy for Monohull Line Honours, Pier Luigi Loro Piana, whose Baltic 130 My Song has also set a new monohull race record © RORC/Arthur Daniel

Pier Luigi Loro Piana's Supermaxi My Song finished the 2018 RORC Transatlantic Race on Tuesday 04 December 2018 at 17:47:11 UTC taking Monohull Line Honours. The Baltic 130 owned by Pier Luigi Loro Piana, a member of the International Maxi Association (IMA), has also set a new Monohull Race Record after completing the 3,000 mile race between Lanzarote and Grenada in an elapsed time of 10 days 5 hrs 47 mins 11 secs, shaving 1hr 19mins 48 secs off the previous monohull race record set in the 2015 race by Jean-Paul Riviere's French Finot-Conq 100, Nomad IV.

It was a champagne moment for My Song's team once alongside the dock at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis as they were greeted by marina staff and well-wishers. Nikoyan Roberts, Manager of Nautical Development for the Grenada Tourism Authority presented Pier Luigi Loro Piana with a basket of Grenadian goods, including chocolate, local spices and condiments. 

My Song On Course For Monohull Record

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 My Song On Course For Monohull Record

My Song shortly after the start of the RORC Transatlantic Race from Marina Lanzarote

My Song shortly after the start of the RORC Transatlantic Race from Marina Lanzarote

Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina is ready for the arrival of Pier Luigi Loro Piana's My Song. The 130ft Italian Supermaxi is expected to take Monohull Line Honours in the RORC Transatlantic Race today and is on course to break the monohull record! My Song must finish the race by 19:06:58 UTC today 04 December.

It is going to be mighty close! Live coverage of the finish will be on the RORC Facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/RoyalOceanRacingClub

Brothers in arms

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Giovanni Soldini (Multi 70 Maserati), holds the Multihull Line Honours Trophy and Peter Cunningham (MOD 70 PowerPlay) the MOCRA Class winners decanter at a prizegiving held at Port Louis Marina, Grenada  © RORC/Arthur Daniel

Giovanni Soldini (Multi 70 Maserati), holds the Multihull Line Honours Trophy and Peter Cunningham (MOD 70 PowerPlay) the MOCRA Class winners decanter at a prizegiving held at Port Louis Marina, Grenada

 © RORC/Arthur Daniel

Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina played host to the multihull prize giving for the 2018 RORC Transatlantic Race. Giovanni Soldini's Maserati Multi70 was the winner of the Multihull Line Honours Trophy. Peter Cunningham's MOD70 PowerPlay was presented with a RORC decanter as winner of the MOCRA Class after time correction. The two crews had enjoyed a full-on match race across the Atlantic. However, both Maserati and PowerPlay showed mutual respect and friendship, right down to Soldini and Cunningham swapping shirts at the ceremony.

Maserati victorious in Grenada

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Giovanni Soldini's Multi 70 Maserati take Multihull Line Honours in the RORC Transatlantic Race © RORC/Arthur Daniel

Giovanni Soldini's Multi 70 Maserati take Multihull Line Honours in the RORC Transatlantic Race © RORC/Arthur Daniel

After an intense 3,000 mile battle across the Atlantic from Marina Lanzarote to Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina, Giovanni Soldini's Maserati Multi 70 has taken Multihull Line Honours in the 2018 RORC Transatlantic Race in an elapsed time of 6 days, 18 hours, 54 minutes and 34 seconds. The team completed the 5th edition of the RORC Transatlantic Race at 06:54:34 UTC on Saturday 1st December.

Peter Cunningham's MOD70 PowerPlay, skippered by Ned Collier Wakefield was less than 46 minutes behind Maserati, finishing at 07:40:12 UTC after seven days of a fascinating duel and taking first place in the MOCRA Class. Whilst no quarter was given on the race course, the two crews celebrated together on the dock; such is the strong accord between the two rivals after a memorable experience.

PowerPlay and Maserati – Down to the Wire

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DAY 7 1600 UTC Report

2018 rtr start maserati bow powerplay jvMaserati and PowerPlay have been neck and neck since the race began © RORC/Joaquín Vera

It's game on in the thrilling race for Multihull Line Honours in the RORC Transatlantic Race. Giovanni Soldini's Maserati Multi70 and Peter Cunningham's MOD70 PowerPlay are expected to arrive at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina in the early hours of Saturday morning, local time in Grenada (-4 UTC). With 400 miles to go, it is impossible to predict the winner.

The Italian trimaran, Maserati Multi 70 has reported surfing at 30 knots of boat speed. “The swell is gentle and long and we’re able to skim over the waves. PowerPlay has been chasing us for days without giving an inch, it’s going to be like this until the finish line!” commented Giovanni Soldini.

International Maxi Association member Pier Luigi Loro Piana, racing Supermaxi My Song, is also locked in a battle with a 'virtual rival'. With 1300 miles to the finish, My Song is estimated to be just seven hours behind the monohull race record set by Jean-Paul Riviere's French Finot-Conq 100, Nomad IV in 2015. My Song is at full speed, the 130ft Baltic yacht's largest spinnaker is 1100 sq.metre and she can fly a total of 2000 sq.metres of sail area from her 59 metre rig.

Kuka3 Pitstop for running repairs

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DAY 6 1200 UTC Report

2018 rtr kuka3 start 2 rrBack on the race track after a pitstop in Cape Verde - Franco Niggeler's Swiss Cookson 50 Kuka3 © Rodrigo Rato

At 1200 UTC on 29 November, Giovanni Soldini's Multi70 Maserati and Peter Cunningham's MOD70 PowerPlay were into the sixth day of their high-speed duel in the RORC Transatlantic Race. Both teams were just under 1,000 miles from the finish at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina in Grenada. The latest position report showed that Maserati was just 13 miles further from the finish than PowerPlay with both multihulls hitting well over 20 knots of boat speed.

Giovanni Soldini sent this message from on board Maserati;

“Everything is going well and we have 25 knots of wind coming from east. Now we have both gybed south and we should have a good advantage over PowerPlay. We’re sailing with gennaker and full main; the moon shines on the waves and Maserati Multi 70 darts with wild accelerations between 25 and 33 knots of speed. It’s almost impossible to sleep – you have to strap yourself into your bunk! We are happy and determined; the finish line is close and we will do our best as always!” 

Halfway Across!

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Day 5 Report - Halfway Across!

2018 RORC Transatlantic Race - Sunrise on My Song

Sunrise from Pier Luigi Loro Piana's Baltic 130 My Song

The leading multihulls are now approximately halfway along the course in the RORC Transatlantic Race having already sailed 1700 miles. Conversely, the smaller boats have only covered between 500 and 600 miles and still have around 2500 miles to go. The chasing pack made up of Black Sheep, Sirius, Xtra Staerk and Kali are now firmly in the trade winds and all are making good speeds in a south-westerly direction.

Blasting into the trades

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Day 4 Report - Blasting into the trades

Giovanni Soldini's Maserati Multi 70 and Peter Cunningham's MOD 70 PowerPlay have pulled the trigger, launching into the trade winds during the third night at sea in the RORC Transatlantic Race. It will be a wet and wild ride on board as both trimarans have been recording boat speeds of over 30 knots. Maserati has maintained a course on starboard tack allowing the Italian team to use their foil (the starboard rudder is conventional due to damage before the start). PowerPlay have been soaking west, attaining a lower average speed, but sailing 57 miles less than Maserati to place just three miles astern.

"Clothes and sleeping bags all drenched on board #MaseratiMulti70, but apart from that everything is good!"Clothes and sleeping bags all drenched on board #MaseratiMulti70, but apart from that everything is good!" - Facebook update from Maserati

The trades beckon for RORC Transatlantic Race leaders

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Class40 Hydra NOR149

Class40 Division confirms a great battle between Catherine Pourre's Eärendil and Henrik Bergesen's Hydra (149) shown here at the mark off Puerto Calero Marina, Lanzarote © RORC

The battle between the multihulls has entered another phase, with both Giovanni Soldini's Maserati Multi 70 and Peter Cunningham's MOD70 PowerPlay crossing the rhumb line at sundown on day two. As dawn broke on the third day of the RORC Transatlantic Race, the two duelling trimarans tacked south. However, Maserati chose to take a hotter angle to the northwesterly breeze, whilst PowerPlay was heading downwind. The main objective for both was to escape their area of high pressure to the solid 20 knots of wind that awaits them; the difference in opinion will play out today. At 0830 UTC on day three both boats were ramping up the boat speed, preparing for the downwind sleigh ride to come.