The trans-Atlantic race attracts international entries to the Racing Division
World Cruising Club is very pleased with the international interest being shown in its ARC Racing Division. This year – the 23rd event – the division will host 34 yachts out of a total entry of 225. The fleet departs from Las Palmas on 23 November on a 2,700nm passage to St. Lucia.
Whilst fundamentally a rally for cruising yachts, the ARC does have a more serious side – a racing division run under the Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC). Yachts in the Racing Divisions are not permitted to use their engines for propulsion (unlike the cruisers), although use of autopilots is allowed.
This year the racing division has attracted entries from as far a field as Australia, the USA, whilst also appealing to skippers from Ireland, Germany, the Netherlands, Monaco, Spain, France, Italy and the UK.
Yachts compete using the IRC rating, and RORC medallions are awarded for 1st, 2nd and 3rd placed yachts in each IRC Division. Racing boats are split into two divisions by size – Division II Racing for yachts between 8.23m and 18.29m (27ft to 60ft) and Division VII Invitation Racing, for yachts greater than 18.29m.
As part of the redevelopment of Rodney Bay Marina, the ARC finish location in St.Lucia, the entrance channel has recently been dredged to 14 feet (4.25m) improving access for the larger race yachts which previously had to anchor off.
It is interesting to note that in the 22 years that the ARC has been run, the time for the fastest yacht to complete the passage, entirely under sail, has fallen steadily, with the current course record being set in 2006.
11 days, 5 hours, 32 minutes and 30 seconds.
Capricorno – Maxi – Rinaldo Del Bono, ITA
11 days, 13 hours, 12 minutes and 20 seconds – Spirit, Volvo 60, Hamish Oliphant, GBR
11days 23hrs, 41 minutes and 43 secs – Spirit of Diana, Farr 65, Ross Daniels, GBR
12 days 18 hours 7 minutes and 20 seconds – Multicap Caraibes, Open 50, Luc Coquelin FRA
13 days 02 hours 58 minutes – Yes!, Sydney 60, Adam Gosling, GBR
Entries into this year’s ARC Cruising and Racing Divisions are now closed and a waiting list is now operating in the event of any cancellations.