Author Archives: Sailing website

Route du Rhum. Alex Thomson Runs Aground

by Richard Crockett Alex Thomson has sailed a pretty smart race so far, and had established a pretty impressive and solid lead over his rival, but that was until he ran aground last night in the closing stages of the race. A statement issued early this morning by Alex Thomson Racing is as follows: “Alex Thomson Racing is currently managing a developing incident, which occurred during the Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe. Today between 21:45 and 22:00 AST Alex Thomson’s IMOCA ... Read More »

Route du Rhum. Donald Alexander Slowly Grinding Away

by Richard Crockett Since Donald Alexander restarted the Route du Rhum race on Sunday, he has not had an easy time – hence little news. Experienced yachties know that when there is little news coming off a boat, times are tough, and the crew, or in this case ‘The Man’ does NOT want to be disturbed! He has battled with headwinds, system breakdowns and more – yet our man continues to grind away at the race with his sights firmly ... Read More »

Golden Globe Race. Van Den Heede to Earn His Passage Around Cape Horn

The embattled French leader nursing a damaged mast on his Rustler 36 ‘Matmut’ after the yacht was pitchpoled in a storm a week ago, has the prospect of having another Southern Ocean buster roll over him this weekend followed by two more when rounding the infamous Cape. The 73-year old veteran is now within 1,300 miles of the Horn, speeding along at 5.3 knots, having ‘fixed’ the damage to his mast by climbing up and lashing the lower shroud fixing ... Read More »

Raymarine Showcases Industry-Leading Innovations

Unique technologies and product updates harness the benefits of augmented reality, drone integration, and advanced MFD integration to open up new possibilities for boat owners. Leading the industry in bringing a new era of navigation and awareness capabilities to boat owners through the most innovative developments in marine electronics, Raymarine is bringing together its game-changing range of technology advancements at this year’s METSTRADE. Its unique product range for 2018 includes the new award-winning Raymarine® ClearCruise™ AR (Augmented Reality), Axiom® XL ... Read More »

Bandit – the highly successful and super-fast offshore cat is FOR SALE.

This Simonis 26 Micro Multihull is designed by Alexander Simonis, and has a Cat C safety certificate. She was manufactured by Maxim Yachts (Glynn Buckle) in Durban. Construction is GRP, with a “Balsa” core, with carbon / kevlar reinforcing in high load areas. Dagger boards & rudders manufactured with epoxy & carbon fibre. Aluminium Rotating Mast by G-Wind. Details Launched 2005 LOA is 9 metres Inventory Mainsails x 2. 1 is carbon + with stack pack Jib x 2. 1 ... Read More »

Route du Rhum. Closest Finish Ever

In the closest finish since it was first staged in 1978, the French ocean racing veteran Francis Joyon won the 40th anniversary Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe solo transatlantic race from Saint Malo to Pointe-À-Pitre early this morning. In the clammy heat and very light winds of the Caribbean night, Joyon, 62, glided across the finish line on ‘IDEC Sport’ at 23:21.47 local time (03:21.47 UTC) to pip the poster boy of French sailing, François Gabart on ‘MACIF’ by just seven ... Read More »

Donald Alexander. Repairs Before Returning to Racing

by Richard Crockett Donald Alexander has been dealt a cruel blow on his debut solo ocean race across the Atlantic when on his third night at sea, during a stonking gale and massive seas, his main bulkhead started cracking and delaminating. Being the tenacious type that he is, and with his normal never-say-die attitude he hoped to be able to shore things up with locker doors and continue racing. But after sending pics to his shore team he was strongly ... Read More »

Route Du Rhum. Another Pasting to Come for Class 40s

by Richard Crockett Followers of Donald Alexander, who is sailing his Class 40 ‘Power of One’ under the Point Yacht Club burgee, will be pleased to hear that he is safely docked in La Coruna, Spain, and busy effecting repairs so that he can get back onto the race course as quickly as possible. Way down south, more than 1,800 nautical miles southwest of Saint Malo, in the warmer climes and flatter seas west of the Canaries, François Gabart continues ... Read More »

A Brilliant Innovation – Electronic Telltales

by Brian Hancock Michel Desjoyeaux is one of the most successful solo offshore sailors in the world. He not only won the Vendee Globe twice, he also won the Route du Rhum as well as numerous other offshore races. Now semi-retired from offshore racing he has a company in France called Mer Agitée. Desjoyeaux and his partner Régine Bornens created Mer Agitée in 1999 to bring innovation to the sailing world. Their latest product, an electronic telltale is pure genius. ... Read More »

Route du Rhum. Things Improving But More Bad Weather to Come

by Richard Crockett On day 3, with such a big fleet now spread over a large area of ocean, skippers in the solo transatlantic Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe are beginning to experience wide variations in weather conditions after three very challenging days at sea. There are few exceptions to this, and our very own lone sailor Donald Alexander has succumbed to the frenzied conditions as his boat is damaged and he is heading to port. Since my report last evening, ... Read More »

Route du Rhum. Alexander Dashing to Port

by Richard Crockett If you have been wondering why Donald Alexander has been sailing such an erratic course, here’s why. Conditions are horrendous in the Atlantic and specifically the Bay of Biscay with rough seas and very strong winds due to an ongoing series of low pressure systems. As a result Donald’s boat has taken a pounding and is starting to delaminate. After discussions with his shore team of Pip and Paul, and the boat manufacturer, he’s going to La ... Read More »

Route du Rhum. An Update from Donald Alexander & Armel Le Cléac’h Capsizes

by Richard Crockett Donald Alexander has been in my thoughts a lot during the past two days as I have wondered how he is faring and adjusting to life on the big bad sea! I was therefore delighted to have received a message from him – and it’s anything but easy out there. “I’ve slowly been adjusting to the boat after not sailing it since August and having a lot of new equipment on board. The first 24 hours were ... Read More »

For Sale: Montecarlo 43

Price: ZAR 1,495, 000 Interested? Contact Chris at: Description: LOA: 43’ Design: Montecarlo Beam: 4.00 m Designer: Lavranos and Scholtz Draft: 2.20 m Builder: Medmarine Keel: ¾ Integral Cruising Fin Hull: GRP Displ: 12 Tons Deck: GRP Launched: 1990 Rigging: Sloop cutter, aluminium mast and boom, spinnaker pole (stowed on mast), Profurl roller-furling unit, stainless steel standing rigging (new 2014). Sails: Total: 3 – Stack-pack Main with lazy-jacks, roller-furling Genoa, Staysail. Winches: Total: 5 – Make: Lewmar self-tailing. 2 ... Read More »

Route du Rhum. A Hectic First 24 Hours and As the Storm Looms

The majority of the 123-strong Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe solo transatlantic fleet has enjoyed a brisk first 24 hours of racing as they head west into the Atlantic. Our man Donald Alexander on ‘Power of One’ certainly seems to be using his nous as from the tracker it shows him altering course either in search of better wind and direction, or that his routeing software shows that to be the optimum course in light of the massive storm that is ... Read More »

GGR. Van Den Heede Suffers Knock-down and Mast Damage

Jean-Luc Van Den Heede called GGR Founder Don McIntyre to advise that his Rustler 36 ‘Matmut’ had been knocked down badly to about 150° which had damaged the connecting bolt attachment to the mast that holds all four lower shrouds. The mast was not in danger of falling, but it was not securely tensioned. The bolt has slipped 5cm down in the mast section and slackened the rigging. He is still in the storm with 11 metre seas and 65 ... Read More »