The Atlantic Rally for Cruisers, also known as the ARC, is an annual transatlantic rally which was first run in 1986. It is organised by the World Cruising Club.

The original ARC, which is still the World Cruising Club’s flagship event, starts in November in Las Palmas,Gran Canaria and ends in Rodney Bay, St Lucia before Christmas.

Additional Rallies

Over the years several additional Atlantic Rally for Cruisers have been launched. These include the ARC+, which also sets off from Las Palmas in November across the Atlantic but stops at Cape Verdes, and tends to attract smaller yachts and more family crews. For 2021 the ARC+ finished in Grenada. In 2022 a new ARC January transatlantic was added for crews wanting a later crossing.

The World Cruising Club also organise the World ARC, a circumnavigation, the ARC Baltic, a rally around the Baltic Sea; and ARC Europe for those intending to sail eastwards across the Atlantic to Europe.

The Atlantic Rally for Cruisers is the largest annual transatlantic rally of its type. It regularly sees flotillas of over 200 yachts taking part. The crossing usually takes as little as 8 days for the faster yachts and as much as 31 for the less competitive craft. The route covers 2700 nautical miles.

History

The first Atlantic Rally for Cruisers was organised by Jimmy Cornell, with support from Yachting World. Cornell’s saw the advantages of cruising in company, including the community and friendships formed among fellow sailors, and sought to bring organisation to the groups of yachts sailing across the Atlantic.

A key benefit of crossing in a rally is the safety checks and training offered pre-start, weather briefings, and the reassurance of having yachts nearby that skippers can be in easy contact with. During the 2021 Atlantic Rally for Cruisers there were two mid-ocean rescues performed by ARC yachts to assist other rally participants who had to abandon their yachts.

When the 2021 Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC) set off from Gran Canaria on November 21, there was one early sign this would be an unusual crossing: the 143 yachts…

On the first night of their Atlantic crossing, a ‘dark shadow’ passed 100m away from Christian and Manuela Lücking’s boat. It was unlit and not moving. Unnerved, Christian Lücking called…

Outremer 51 catamaran at sea

They have two different boats, different sailing plans and two very different sets of experience. But what these cruisers have in common is a desire to explore in two hulls…