Cape to Rio Race Update

The Cape to Rio Ocean Race is the jewel in the Royal Cape Yacht Club’s crown. Dating back to 1971, the race across the South Atlantic Ocean, connecting the iconic cities of Cape Town and Rio de Janeiro, typically takes place every three years. The list of past participants reads like the who’s-who of ocean sailing, and the race attracts both club and professional sailors alike. With just six months remaining before the start of the next race, the build-up ... Read More »

Mirpuri Foundation ‘Racing for the Planet’ to Put Climate Change on the Global Agenda

The Mirpuri Foundation has announced that it will soon be ‘Racing For The Planet’, as it confirms both its environmental message and the name of its new VO65 racing yacht for the next edition of The Ocean Race, beginning in 2021. Through the ‘Turn the Tide on Plastic’ campaign in the 2017-18 edition of the Race, the Mirpuri Foundation was part of a global movement against plastic pollution – and will now enter a team in the next edition of ... Read More »

Gordons Bay Yacht Club Enters Lipton Cup as 4th Entry

The last time that the Gordons Bay Yacht Club won the Lipton Cup was way back in 1998 when sailing off Port Elizabeth in Algoa Bay. Pete Shaw and Steve du Toit were joint skippers all those years ago. The Club is back again, this time with a young mixed team of sailors who will be sailing aboard the Cape 31 ‘Ski’ which will be skippered by Rodney Tanner. ‘Ski’ was the very first C31 launched after the prototype ‘Flame’ ... Read More »

From the Archives – Sprog 700

by Richard Crockett The Sprog class was once an evergreen and dynamic class which just seemed to provide top class dinghy sailing for many – until it suddenly died which was rather sad. Yet despite its demise as an active sailing class there are many out there who remember the Sprog fondly, and who still, to this day, remember their Sprog days very clearly. Dudley Thomson, who now sails from Benoni Yacht Club, sent me the accompanying 3 Sprog pics, ... Read More »

July 2019 Raymarine Sailor of the Month – Sean Kavanagh

Local RSA Optimist sailors have generally had a torrid time when competing internationally, and few in recent times have managed to make the Gold fleet at their very first attempt. But this changed when Sean Kavanagh competed in the European championship last month, his first ever major European event, and made his mark by getting into the Gold fleet. And he raised some eyebrows too as he was the youngest competitor at the event, eventually qualifying for the Gold fleet ... Read More »

Back to the Whitbread!

The spirit of the Whitbread Round the World Race is back with the announcement of the 2023 OCEAN GLOBE RACE, a retro event starting from a European port on 10 September 2023 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of this major milestone in adventure sailing. In a world now dominated by professional sailors, foiling yachts and eye-watering budgets. This retro Race reopens once-in-a-lifetime opportunities for ordinary sailors and adventurous yacht owners to follow in the wake of Tabarly, Blake, van Rietschoten, ... Read More »

Kiel Week 2019. Alex Burger Speaks

by Liesl King Alex and Benji sadly did not get another day of sailing in since the last report. The AP flag was up well before their scheduled 15h00 start and with the wind dropping to 2 knots, racing was cancelled at 18h00. Alex: “It has been a tough week for us as we didn’t quite get the results we were hoping for. We learnt a lot though. We were okay in strong wind conditions, but in the light stuff ... Read More »

Kiel Week 2019. Kai Leslie Speaks

by Liesl King Kiel week went by in a blur for our local competitors, especially for Benji Daniel and Alex Burger on the 49er as light winds prevented any races in the closing days. Kai Leslie was more fortunate. Kai aced the first start so well that he was BFD and spent the race bobbing about waiting for race 2 so that he could compete again. But in all fairness he was BFD together with the sailors currently in silver ... Read More »

European Optimist Champs Dominated by Italy

A series of great races were contested on the final day thanks to a well-established westerly wind of between 6 and 8 knots, enabling the competitors to round off the week of competition in style after what has been a very varied set of conditions. The 293 sailors linked together multiple courses, as one might expect, with the leader board really being shaken up between the first day’s competition and yesterday’s races. The Italians sweep the board. Among the girls, ... Read More »

Kiel Week 2019. Sadly Little Wind

by Richard Crockett Yesterday was not a good day for the RSA teams as they had to wait for many hours to get onto the water due to the very light winds. Kai Leslie summed it up well when he messaged me the following: “After 8 hours of waiting we got 1 race in. The race was such a blur I don’t quite know what I did wrong, but at the top mark every boat rounded bow to stern and ... Read More »

Transatlantic Race 2019. Fleet Contending with Light Patches and Gulf Stream

The conditions on the open Atlantic Ocean are far from white knuckle, but the tactics playing out in the Transatlantic Race 2019 are never more interesting. It’s perhaps due to the lack of screaming conditions that the action is so compelling. Rather than dodging waves and squalls, the fleet is scampering around light patches while setting up for the effects of the Gulf Stream. At the head of the fleet the supermaxi ‘SHK Scallywag’, skippered by Australian David Witt, seems ... Read More »

Kiel Week 2019. Waiting for Wind

by Richard Crockett Today looks as if it may be a long day for competitors and followers of the RSA sailors at home as the forecast is not looking good for wind. Kai Leslie sent me a pic of the flags hanging limply from the mast. Liesl King told me that Alex Burger and Benji Daniel have made the silver fleet in the 49ers, but as there is not a breath of wind, racing is on an indefinite hold, while ... Read More »

European Optimist Championship from the RSA Perspective

by Richard Crockett Sailing in an event with 293 competitors means that anything is possible at any time on the race course, especially with individual results. Yesterday I mentioned that Sean Kavanagh was doing well, but yesterday his luck deserted him somewhat as he dropped from his 44th place down to 58 with a BFD penalty, a 60 which is his discard so far and a 56. When one takes into account that there are 176 boys competing, he is ... Read More »

Kiel Week 2019. Leslie Improves

by Richard Crockett Yesterday Kai Leslie said that he could have been 10 places better off “if only…” – and today he put his money where his mouth is and proved that he had the ability to really be those 10 places better. Yesterday he scored a 34 & 45 – today a 24; 19 & 36 – leaving him 33rd overall and as close as dammit to mid-way in the fleet. But again he was forced out of the ... Read More »

Transatlantic Race 2019. So Far So Good on Day 1

Few things are straightforward when racing across the Atlantic Ocean. There are safety concerns at every turn, from storms and lightning threatening everything above water to unseen floating objects (“UFOs”) threatening the parts underwater. Contrary to that theory, the 13 yachts participating in the Transatlantic Race 2019 have had surprisingly straightforward conditions in their first 24 hours at sea. “The first night was fairly easy,” said David Askew, co-owner of the VO70 ‘Wizard’. “We’ve been close reaching in 18 to ... Read More »