Eric de Turckheim’s French Nivelt-Muratet 54 Teasing Machine was today declared the overall winner of the 2017 RORC Transatlantic Race.
Whilst a number of the record 23 yacht fleet are still racing, none of them can better Teasing Machine’s corrected time under IRC.
Teasing Machine is the smallest yacht to win the RORC Transatlantic Trophy, which has been previously won by yachts in the Maxi Class.
“To win the RORC Transatlantic Race is just fantastic,” commented Eric de Turckheim. “It is not just a personal achievement to win my first ever Transatlantic Race, because it has been such a massive team effort. Teasing Machine was only taking part in her second offshore race, and to build a team to that performance level within four months has required a huge commitment from everyone, but especially Laurent Pages.”
Teasing Machine tactician Laurent Pages and navigator Jean-Luc Nelias form a formidable partnership. The Frenchmen took the same roles for skipper Franck Cammas winning the 2011-12 Volvo Ocean Race, and Nelias won this year’s Transat Jacques Vabre on Sodebo Ultim with Thomas Colville, smashing the race record.
RORC Chief Executive Eddie Warden Owen was very pleased with the result and the race. “It has been no easy task for the Teasing Machine team to win this race and they have been pushed hard by some very competitive boats. Eric and his team showed their determination and expertise setting a strong pace from day one and never let up. This race marks the start of the 2018 RORC season’s Points Championship and Teasing Machine has set the standard required for the rest of the fleet which has its eyes on this prestigious prize.”
The scheduled Prize Giving was held at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina. Teams were awarded prizes in the presence of the Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture, Hon Dr Clarice Modeste-Curwen, Grenada Tourism Authority CEO Patricia Maher, and Nikoyan Roberts, Manager of Nautical Development for the GTA and the Secretary General of the International Maxi Class Association, RORC Admiral Andrew McIrvine.
Tilmar Hansen, skipper of Outsider was delighted to win the ORC Division overall. “This has been a very competitive race, and for our next race, the RORC Caribbean 600, we will need to put more fire in the oven. Teasing Machine will be there and our good friends and rivals Varuna will also be back.”
- Overall Winner of the RORC Transatlantic Race winning the RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy and IRC Class 0 – Teasing Machine, Eric de Turckheim
- Monohull Line Honours winning the IMA Transatlantic Trophy – CQS, Ludde Ingvall
- Multihull Line Honours and MOCRA Multihull Winner – Zed 6, Gerald Bibot
- Class40 Winner – Red, Mathias Mueller von Bluemencron
- ORC Division Overall Winner – Outsider, Tilmar Hansen
- ORCSy Division Winner – Sorceress, Will Apold
Follow the remainder of the fleet still racing: rorctransatlantic.rorc.org
YB Race Tracker: rorctransatlantic.rorc.org/tracking/2017-fleet-tracking.html
Individual yachts, classes or the whole fleet can be tracked throughout the race.
The wrong kind of waves! (update from Rupert Holmes and Richard Palmer on JPK1010 Jangada)
- Position: 11.27N, 47.45W
- Boat speed: 7-10 knots
- Wind: ENE 18-22 knots
- Air temperature: 29.7C
- Sea temperature: 32.1C
- Weather: 9/10 clear skies with bright sun
Instead of the 3,000 miles of glorious downwind surfing we were promised, we started with calms, then days of headwinds, squalls and more light airs. As a result, we’ve had to go well south compared to traditional routes to get into solid trade-wind conditions.
Even then, we’re not getting the sustained easy surfing you might expect thanks to a confused sea and wind-driven waves that have such a long wavelength that most refuse to crest. A couple of days ago we gave up on running with the S2 and S4 spinnakers, as the sea state meant we had to sail more than 35 degrees off the flat water downwind polars just to keep wind in the sail.
Instead we have a poled out jib and mainsail – an easy old-school arrangement that allows us to point dead downwind at Grenada. An initial screening of progress after dropping the kite showed a 4 per cent decrease in boat speed, accompanied by a 5 per cent drop in distance sailed – in other words a small net gain. Importantly, for a race of such marathon proportions it has also significantly reduced wear and tear on the boat, fittings and sails.
The other frustration is huge amounts of weed that wraps around both rudders and the keel. In day light it’s possible to steer around the biggest clumps, but at night impossible. An advantage of running without a spinnaker is that the frequent luffs head to wind to allow the boat to back up and clear the foils are much easier if you don’t have to drop the kite first, especially as we are double-handed.
A wind shift this evening will see us gybing onto starboard for the final run into the finish. Hopefully the new wind will break up the patches of weed… and the forecast wind angles look promising for a fast blast with the A5 spinnaker.
Routine on board continues as before, although less time is needed to analyse weather and routing options as we close on the finish. There are also minor changes to diet as the last of the fresh vegetables are almost gone.
The routing software suggests we will finish sometime between Saturday evening and the following morning local time. We’re pushing for the former on the premise that Grenadian rum will taste better on a Saturday night than a Sunday morning.
by Louay Habib