After a long and frustrating race, the all-women team aboard AlphaGraphics completed the EDS Atlantic Challenge and crossed the finish line to receive a hero's welcome
The all-woman team, AlphaGraphics, crossed the finish line at 15:06:57 GMT yesterday. Their total elapsed time for the leg was 14 days, 23 hours, 6 minutes and 57 seconds.
“We’re here, we made it!” shouted skipper Helena Darvelid as spectator boats crowded next to the women’s yacht. The AlphaGraphics team was met at the dock by a large crowd of family and well-wishers. Skipper Darvelid slipped the boat into her spot in front of the Hatherleigh, the AlphaGraphics tender.
As has become his custom, Nick Moloney, the winning skipper from Kingfisher, hopped on board and sprayed the women with champagne before giving them all hugs. “The last day was so frustrating,” Darvelid said. “The winds were shifty, then it switched to the east where we were going.”
The relief of being ashore and finished was evident, as the AlphaGirls quickly made plans to shower and dress for the prize-giving ceremony. The frustration of still being at sea with everyone else long since in port became almost unbearable toward the end, said Anne Monmousseau. “We talked about turning the engine on,” she said.
But she said after completing an epic voyage like the EDS Atlantic Challenge, to arrive under power would not have felt right. Although they finished sixth and last, they completed every leg. FILA and Sill, both of which scored higher than AlphaGraphcis, cannot make that claim.