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Displaying items by tag: Transatlantic

#routedurhum – It has been a dramatic night with 15 incidents across the classes, including a collision between an Ultime trimaran and a cargo ship, the air rescue of a sailor after his boat lost its keel and overturned, and a Multi50 sailor who is awaiting help after his float broke off.

Thomas Coville saw his hopes of winning the Route Du Rhum vanish during the first night of the trans-Atlantic race when he damaged his yacht in a collision with a cargo ship.

Competing in the Ultimate class, the skipper of Sodebo Ultime escaped uninjured but damaged the starboard float on his boat.

Coville, who won the 3,542-nautical mile (6,560-kilometer) leg between Saint-Malo and the French Caribbean island of Guadeloupe in 1998 in the monohull class, was among the favorites for this year's race.

Another French skipper, François Angoulvant, had to be rescued after his Class 40 Team Sabrosa lost its keel. Angoulvant was airlifted to Brest where he is in good condition, according to race organisers.

Loick Peyron was leading the field early Monday aboard Banque Populaire VII.

Clipper Race chairman and founder, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, has sent his first blog since he started Transatlantic solo race, the Route du Rhum - Destination Guadeloupe yesterday at 1400 CET from Saint-Malo, France.

With winds of 30 knots plus and large seas reported overnight, Sir Robin sent this report from his Open 60, Grey Power, this morning.

A grey sea, overcast, light drizzle and a West South Wester'ly Force 5 greeted me at dawn this morning. I am currently 40 miles from Ushant and debating whether to take the inner side of the Traffic Separation zone. Currently making 6-7 knots. Could do more if I put up more sail but we'll stay like this for the time being, as the wind is still 20 plus knots and gusting higher, just had one of 29 knots and the sea very lumpy.

It's a long race, and no point in breaking things at the beginning. I made a very cautious start. My Clipper Race colleague Simon Johnston was with me until half an hour before when my Rhum class competitor Bob Escoffier sent his rib to take him ashore. He has been invaluable, as was fellow colleague Alex Dower.

I soon found myself surrounded by 40's most of yesterday evening, pushing hard. Those boats are quick, but when the forecast squalls of 40 knots arrived I would not have wanted to be in one. Fortunately I had decided to settle in on the first night, so already had 3 reefs in the main and the storm jib set, but the boat was still pushed hard over and even with the mainsail pushed right down its track, was crashing into the waves.

I saw a couple of Automatic Identification Scheme targets turn round, I think they were in the race, but it was a gear breaking situation if you did not think of the boat and try to get her comfortable. We came through without damage, except for the staysail sheets becoming amorous, and it took a dark, cold wet hour on the foredeck, often under water, sorting out the resulting snakes' honeymoon.

Now typing this on a jumping boat is far from easy, as the computer often skips a letter or inserts one you did not ask for.

I am wondering how the big multis are fairing and if everyone is alright. There was some mention on Channel 16 last night but it was in fast spoken French.

C'est tout pour le moment.

RKJ

Published in Offshore

#offshore –A brand new offshore race taking yachts from Europe to the Caribbean has been annuonced by leading offshore body, the Royal Ocean Racing Club in London. The RORC Transatlantic Race will set off from Lanzarote, Canary Islands and finish in the Caribbean, at a destination to be confirmed. The 2,800 nm east to west race will act as a feeder for yachts participating in the 2015 RORC Caribbean 600, held annually in February from Antigua.

The RORC racing calendar attracts sailors from all over the world to compete during the season in over 20 races and comprises a series of highly competitive inshore and offshore IRC Rated events throughout the year. The new RORC Transatlantic Race will be the longest and final race in 2014, making it another busy year for the London-based Club. It follows a season of regular RORC races as well as the international Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race and Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup.

"In the past the club has been involved with the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC) who have a racing division, but with increasing interest in the RORC Caribbean 600 every February, the number and quality of serious race boats making the crossing has required a specialist RORC event all of its own," explains RORC Commodore, Mike Greville. "We're delighted to be working with such keen racers as the Calero family and using the fabulous marina facility they have in Lanzarote and we look forward to a long and happy relationship."

Puerto Calero - Host Port
The host port for the start of the race will be the 450-berth Puerto Calero Marina situated on the south side of Lanzarote, only 15 minutes from the island's international airport. The Calero family are no strangers to hosting big events.

"We are delighted the RORC has chosen our marina to host the start of the RORC Transatlantic Race in November next year," said José Juan Calero. "We have all the facilities required by a yacht making an Atlantic crossing: a fully equipped boat yard and repair service, food and supply shops and we are very proud of all the restaurants and hotels we have around the marina. These all make for a pleasant and relaxing time for competitors in advance of the start."

In November, Puerto Calero will once again play host port to the RC44 Championship Tour. Returning to Lanzarote for the sixth consecutive year since 2008, this will be the third time the Island has hosted the Championships. It is one of three classes - TP52 and GP42 - to have held their world championships at Puerto Calero.

The marina is also home to Team SCA, the all female crew training for the 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race and Ericsson, Groupama and Puma have held training camps here in recent years.

Canarian Meander
Lanzarote is the most eastern island of the Canarian archipelago and it is the RORC's intention that the race course will meander through the islands before venturing out into the Atlantic.

The race, commencing over the weekend of the 28th and 29th November 2014, will be run under OSR Category 1 and the start date will allow time for competitors in the Rolex Middle Sea Race to get to the start of the RORC Transatlantic Race in good time and for the yachts to finish in the Caribbean before Christmas.

To register interest and for more information, contact the RORC Race Office: T: +44 (0) 207 518 3131 and email: [email protected]

Published in RORC
Tagged under

#marine science – Irish and Canadian scientists join forces on a transatlantic survey onboard the Irish National Research Vessel, RV Celtic Explorer which sets sail today for the Labrador and Newfoundland Seas to carry out fisheries research.

Canadian Ambassador to Ireland, his Excellency, Loyola Hearn, boarded the RV Celtic Explorer at Galway Docks today to meet the Irish and Canadian collaborators in this transatlantic expedition from Galway to St. Johns, Newfoundland.

The survey led by Dr George Rose, Director of the Centre for Fisheries Ecosystems Research at the Fisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN), is multidisciplinary and will gather oceanographic data as well as acoustic recordings across the entire North Atlantic, building on work done on the two previous transatlantic surveys in 2011 and 2012.  Canadian scientists will be joined onboard by Irish researchers from National University of Ireland, Galway (NUI Galway) and Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT). Sheena Fennell, NUI Galway will carry out oceanographic monitoring throughout the journey to St. John's and will collaborate with Dr Rose on the acoustic data collected during the transatlantic trip. The aim is to search for 'hot spots' of smaller mid-water fish, such as lanternfish and begin to understand their distribution.

The vessel will research the cod stocks on the Flemish Cap en route to Newfoundland and Labrador before completing a large scale survey for cod and capelin in Newfoundland and Labrador waters.  As a former Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, Loyola Hearn was particularly interested to board the RV Celtic Explorer ahead of it transatlantic passage to Newfoundland and Labrador. Mr. Hearn said, "We are now seeing growth in the fish stocks off Newfoundland and Labrador, and surveys like this provide essential information on the sustainability of fish stocks.  The potential for increased involvement both in ocean research and the fishing industry between Ireland and Canada is now being realised.   The Celtic Explorer is an ideal ship to carry out this research which will be of such great benefit to both countries."

Dr. Peter Heffernan, Chief Executive, Marine Institute said, "This transatlantic collaboration is hugely important for Ireland and builds on the strong relationship between Ireland and Newfoundland and Labrador established since the first Newfoundland survey on the Celtic Explorer in 2011. It will allow Irish researchers to forge strong links with their Canadian counterparts as part of a wider international ocean observatory initiative. This is particularly relevant in the context of the European Union's Atlantic Strategy and the emerging Action Plan, which is on course to be completed during the Irish Presidency of the EU.

"This type of multidisciplinary research and international cooperation is essential to achieving healthy marine ecosystems – which is a key goal of the Government's Integrated Marine Plan for Ireland -  Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth, published in 2012. We are delighted with this collaboration with our Canadian partners".

Dr. George Rose reiterated those sentiments, saying "This voyage continues to have tremendous value to both Irish and Canadian researchers, and contributes significantly to the knowledge base and prosperity of the Newfoundland and Labrador fisheries.  I look forward to the continuance of this collaboration".

During the passage, an observational platform that sits on the seabed called a benthic lander system, will be deployed at a depth of 800-900m in a canyon on the continental shelf off the Irish Coast to measure turbidity, flouresence, temperature, salinity, water column and near seabed currents.  The lander will remain in the canyon until June when it will be recovered during an NUI Galway led biodiscovery survey onboard the Celtic Explorer.

A Galway and Mayo Institute of Technology researcher will monitor cetacean activity during the passage across the Atlantic to Newfoundland and Labrador.

University College Cork graduate, Rachel Morgan will join the survey through the Training Through Research Surveys Scheme, run by the Strategic Marine Alliance for Research and Training (SMART). The programme gives young Irish researchers an opportunity to gain an invaluable experience on multidisciplinary surveys.

The survey is primarily funded through charter of the national research vessel by the Fisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University. It builds on a strong collaborative relationship between the Irish Marine Institute and the Marine Institute of MUN and facilitates a transatlantic multidisciplinary survey which brings together experienced Irish and Canadian oceanographers, marine biologists, benthic ecologists, as well as young researchers who will gain invaluable experience onboard this survey.

Participation of third level students is funded though the Strategic Marine Alliance for Research and Training (SMART) programme.

Published in Marine Science

#ROWING – Ocean rower Aodhan Kelly is travelling the opposite direction to the one he expected this morning – but he is reported to be safe and well after a tumultous 24 hours. The Dubliner and the five other men in the crew of the Sara G were hoping to set a new record for rowing across the Atlantic from Morocco to Barbados, but they capsized at 11 am yesterday 520 miles from their destination.

The six men stayed in a life-raft t until rescued by the cargo ship the Nord Taipei. The 32,000 tonne craft is continuing on to Gibraltar and is due to arrive on February 9th.

Sara-G

The Sara–G at the start of her now ill-fated journey

The Sara G crew, headed up by the experienced skipper Matt Craughwell, were initally hoping to break what they called the “four-minute mile” of ocean rowing by crossing the Atlantic in under 30 days. But winds and sea conditions were much tougher than expected. They had battled on bravely, with the aim of setting a new record but it all went awry on the 27th day of the row.

The present World Record is held by the 2011 crew of the Sara G - including Craughwell and Irishmen Rob Byrne and Adam Burke – who travelled from Morrocco to Barbados in 33 days 21 hours and 46 minutes in 2011. The Hallin Marine had the shortest crossing, travelling from Tenerife to Barbados in 2011 in 31 days 23 hours and 31 minutes in 2011, but because the distance is shorter the Sara G was deemed the World Record holder by the Ocean Rowing Society.

Kelly, a 26 year old from Palmerstown in Dublin, learned his rowing with Neptune rowing club in Islandbridge for whom he won eight national titles, seven junior and one intermediate. In recent years he has been living and working in Reading in England.

Published in Rowing

#ROWING – The crew of the Sara G, including Irishman Aodhan Kelly, have been picked up at sea after a capsize. The shore-based team said the six-man crew were safe and well on board the cargo ship Nord Taipei. The crew had been attempting to break the world record for rowing the Atlantic Ocean.

Published in Rowing
Ships off Ireland's south and west coasts have been asked by the French coastguard to keep a lookout for a yachtsman who has gone missing on a transatlantic voyage.
In a report that has echoes of missing yacht The Golden Eagle - which sailed into Kerry after an Atlantic crossing from Bermuda many days after schedule - RTE News says that the 12-metre yacht La Galatee left French Guiana on 5 August sailing for St Malo in France, but the French coastguard has lost contact with the vessel.
No air and sea searches are being considered at this time, but Irish Guard stations are broadcasting alerts and requests for sightings of the yacht.

Ships off Ireland's south and west coasts have been asked by the French coastguard to keep a lookout for a yachtsman who has gone missing on a transatlantic voyage.

In a report that has echoes of missing yacht The Golden Eagle - which sailed into Kerry after an Atlantic crossing from Bermuda many days after schedule - RTÉ News says that the 12-metre yacht La Galatee left French Guiana on 5 August sailing for St Malo in France, but the French coastguard has lost contact with the vessel.

No air and sea searches are being considered at this time, but Irish Coast Guard stations are broadcasting alerts and requests for sightings of the yacht.

Published in Coastguard
A US entrant in this year's Rolex Fastnet Race capsizsed near Fastnet Rock off the Cork coast earliert this evening, The Irish Times reports.
Further to our previous report, The Irish Times notes that 22 people were on board the Rambler 100, which overturned in force-five winds at around 6.30pm this evening.
The Department of Transport confirmed that all crew have been accounted for, with 16 sitting in the hull of the boat and the remainer on life rafts.
RNLI Baltimore's lifeboat and the Irish Coast Guard are currently attending. Coastguard helicopters have also been dispacted, with naval vessel LE Clara giving assistance. The rescue effort has been hampered by misty conditions in the area this evening.
Rambler 100 recently set a new world record for the almost 3,000-nautical mile transatlantic crossing from Newport, Rhode Island to Lizard Point in Cornwall with a time of 6 days, 22 hours, 8 minutes and 2 seconds.
Elsewhere, there was disaster in IRC Z this afternoon for co-skippers Karl Kwok and Jim Swartz’s Farr 80 Beau Geste (HKG).
The yacht suffered a ‘structural problem’ while mid-away across the Celtic Sea en route to the Rock. She has since turned her bow back towards Land’s End.
Yesterday there was another high profile retirement when Johnny Vincent’s TP52 Pace (GBR) returned to her berth in the Hamble with mast problems.
In the Class 40s John Harris’ GryphonSolo2 (USA) has also pulled out, retiring to Dartmouth with sail damage.

A US entrant in this year's Rolex Fastnet Race capsizsed near Fastnet Rock off the Cork coast earlier this evening, The Irish Times reports.

Further to our previous report, The Irish Times notes that 22 people were on board the Rambler 100, which overturned in force-five winds at around 6.30pm this evening.

The Department of Transport confirmed that all crew have been accounted for, with 16 sitting in the hull of the boat and the remainer on life rafts. 

ramblertext

Rambler 100 rounds the Fastnet Rock. Photo: Daniel Forster/Rolex

RNLI Baltimore's lifeboat and the Irish Coast Guard are currently attending. Coastguard helicopters have also been dispatched, with naval vessel LE Clara giving assistance. The rescue effort has been hampered by misty conditions in the area this evening.

ramblercapsize

Baltimore lifeboat at the scene of the capsized Rambler 100. Photo: Carlo Borlenghi/Rolex

Rambler 100 recently set a new world record for the almost 3,000-nautical mile transatlantic crossing from Newport, Rhode Island to Lizard Point in Cornwall with a time of 6 days, 22 hours, 8 minutes and 2 seconds.

In other Fastnet action, there was disaster in IRC Z this afternoon for co-skippers Karl Kwok and Jim Swartz’s Farr 80 Beau Geste (HKG).

The yacht suffered a ‘structural problem’ while mid-away across the Celtic Sea en route to the Rock. She has since turned her bow back towards Land’s End. 

Yesterday there was another high profile retirement when Johnny Vincent’s TP52 Pace (GBR) returned to her berth in the Hamble with mast problems. 

In the Class 40s John Harris’ GryphonSolo2 (USA) has also pulled out, retiring to Dartmouth with sail damage.

Published in Fastnet
The Puma Ocean Sailing team completed their Atlantic crossing early Monday morning, July 11, at 05:40 UTC to finish the Transatlantic Race 2011. PUMA's Mar Mostro was the second boat to cross the finish line at Lizard Point, Cornwall, U.K., behind Rambler 100, and is currently leading the IRC overall standings based on corrected time. Skipper Ken Read and crew traveled the 2,975 nautical mile course in 7 days, 11 hours and 40 minutes.

"We entered the race with zero expectations, just like the other IRC handicap racing we've done this year," Read said. "We wanted to learn the boat and the crew. Now, here we are in the position of possibly winning a race that we didn't expect to win. We're pleasantly shocked. We didn't break anything, the sails held up, the team is certainly coming together, and there's not a single negative to this race. It was a great experience."

The race was the first test for the PUMA team and new Volvo Open 70 racing yacht. The 11-member crew departed Newport, R.I., on Sunday, July 3, alongside five other boats in IRC Class 1 in the final start of the race. Rambler 100 (skipper George David) earned line honors after finishing on Sunday, July 10, at 16:08 UTC. Also in the class: ICAP Leopard (Clarke Murphy); Beau Geste (Karl Kwok); Sojana (Peter Harrison); and Vanquish (USMMA – All American Offshore Team). Overall, 26 boats ranging from 40 to 289 feet in length entered the race.

PUMA's Mar Mostro reached a maximum speed of just over 30 knots early in the race, traveling 551 nautical miles on Day 3. By Friday, light air slowed the pace through the line.

"The finish was excruciating," Read said. "We approached The Lizard, knowing we had to get there quick because the current was about to change and go against us. As we entered the English Channel, the breeze was dying steadily to the point where the current did change. Literally, when the race committee said we were finished, we were stopped and about to throw the anchor as we would have been going backwards with the current. A bizarre twist to the finish.

"But, this is boat racing," Read continued. "It's great training because you have to be ready for the extreme highs and lows, and that goes for weather as well. To finish in a complete drift off is another lesson learned – be prepared for everything."

Read and crew are not stopping in the U.K., but are already heading south to the Canary Islands. The team's summer training headquarters becomes the Puerto Calero Marina in Lanzarote at the end of this week. From there, the crew will head to the race start location of Alicante, Spain, in late September. Next racing on the docket is the Volvo Ocean Race with Leg 1 beginning November 5.

"The boat doesn't have a list of any real problems," Read said looking ahead. "But, we can't sit back and think 'we're done,' or that we're great. We know we have to get better, and an experience like this helps us sort out a lot of little things that we can get better at. If you don't improve every day, then you're going backwards because everybody else is improving."

Published in Offshore
A new Transatlantic record is expected be set in the next day. 26 yachts departed Newport, R.I., USA, during three staggered starts over the last two weeks, for a finish off The Lizard

Newport, R.I. USA (July 9, 2011) – For the last 24-hours of the Transatlantic Race 2011, light air has persisted for virtually the entire fleet -- frustrating the progress of nearly every boat. Small gains in these conditions can be turned into massive advantages as finding breeze under a patch of cloud or during a rainsquall can deliver huge percentage gains and those few precious miles can mean getting into new breeze, hopefully hours before the opposition.

All of the yachts in the Transatlantic Race 2011 have access to detailed weather forecasts, and global weather models like NOAA's GFS (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Global Forecast System) are great tools for understanding the broad weather pattern. They run, however, at a resolution of 60km and are unlikely to pick up the local effects out in the Atlantic, especially as the fleet encounters land-produced effects. Weather forecasting may have been around for over 100 years, but a sailor's experience is often more reliable than any computer models. A well-known yachting term, 'head out of the boat' is a very poignant factor right now. Finding breeze in these fickle conditions is golden.

Rambler 100, skippered by George David (Hartford, Conn.), looks to be the odds-on favorite for line honors and is expected to cross the finish line at The Lizard, on the south coast of England, around mid-day Sunday, July 10. PUMA Mar Mostro, skippered by Ken Read (Newport, R.I.) has taken a two percent time penalty allowing them to stack sails and is still currently leading IRC Class One on corrected time -- although not the race overall.

Carina, the McCurdy and Rhodes 48 skippered by Rive Potts, Jr. (Essex, Conn.) which started the race on June 26 has that honor (current overall race leader). There will probably be a national holiday in the yacht's hometown if they pull off a win against such esteemed opposition. Unfortunately, Carina was barely making any headway today and still has well over 700 miles to go. Potts and his crew will be praying for more wind and the team will be doing everything they can to find it. While looking to have a win in IRC Class Four sewn up, Carina only needs to average about five and a half knots to see them seriously challenge for the overall title.

In IRC Class Two, Jazz navigator Mike Broughton (Hamble, U.K.) reported via satellite phone this morning to say that they had found a fairly consistent breeze from the northwest and were making good headway. Jazz is a firm favorite for taking class honors and still has an outside chance of taking an overall victory after time correction.

"The boat is immaculately clean, something that the crew all pride themselves in," said Broughton confirming that – apart from the diet -- all is well onboard. "This morning we are enjoying some freeze-dried granola for breakfast, which is definitely our favorite energizer in the mornings. However, every other day we have freeze-dried scrambled egg and I have to say that once we get ashore, I will be happy not to see that particular delicacy for a very long time."

In IRC Cass Three, Zaraffa, the Reichel Pugh 65 skippered by Huntington Sheldon (Shelburne, Vt.), has just over 500 miles to go, along with a virtually unassailable lead in its class. And in the Open Class, Phaedo, skippered by Lloyd Thornburg (St. Barths), has understandably enjoyed the lighter breeze, far more than its heavy weight opponent Maltese Falcon. The Lamborghini orange Gunboat 66 has skipped away some 40 miles ahead of the Perini Navi.

While the end of the race is approaching for the front runners, spare a thought for Mike Hennessey (Mystic, Conn.) and Rob Windsor (East Northport, N.Y.), who are sailing the Class 40 Dragon double-handed and who updated their progress by satellite link.

"In the past 24 hours we have achieved three milestones: We reached the most remote point we will get to in this race: 825 miles to Cape Spear, Newfoundland, to the west and 825 miles to Great Skellig Island, Ireland, to the east and 700 miles to Kap Farvel, Greenland to the north. I have no idea if any of those places even have a port we could get into, but it's nice to know where you would have to bail out to!

"We passed the 1000-mile mark, with 980 some odd miles to go to the finish. We have had our first upwind work of the entire race. Currently slapping our way through short chop on our way east, under gray and cold skies."

Sponsors of the TR 2011 are Rolex, Thomson Reuters, Newport Shipyard, Perini Navi and Peters & May, with additional support by apparel sponsor Atlantis Weathergear.

Published in Offshore
Tagged under

Like any good sailing match race, the second class to depart in the Transatlantic Race 2011 today was a duel of two radicals – this time between a 66ft carbon cat, and a 289ft 3 masted mega yacht. Today size didn't matter and the nimble cat, the Gunboat 66 Phaedo, quickly shot away leaving the Perini Navi, Maltese Falcon, flapping in her tracks.

Published in Racing
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