Tonnerre in the chocolates again

Piet Vroon's new Ker 46 claims the RORC's Morgan Cup

Monday June 29th 2009, Author: Louay Habib, Location: United Kingdom
Piet Vroon’s Ker 46, Tonnerre de Breskens, won their second RORC offshore race in a row winning the Morgan Cup, but Rob Lutener and Martin Elwood’s TP52, Cutting Edge, came within a whisker of taking the top prize.

“At about 0600 we contacted the race committee to report that we were approaching the line and we looked to have a race win in the bag but the wind just died on us,” commented Rob Lutener. “We anchored about half a mile short of the finish; we could almost smell the croissants! But Tonnerre de Breskens arrived from the west with breeze, that didn’t get to us, and it was another five hours before we crossed the line. Although we were disappointed we had a great race with good breeze virtually the whole time until the end. As usual on Cutting Edge the atmosphere on board was superb”.

Cutting Edge can console themselves with a win in IRC Class Super Zero but Tonnerre de Breskens took line honours, the overall win on handicap and the IRC Class Zero prize. The X 41, Pharo, sailed by Jean-Eudes Renier, Rafael Biosse and Patrick Baune was second in class and overall. Bill Blain’s J 133, Batfish III, was third.

Steven Anderson’s First 40.7, Encore, had a fantastic race; winning IRC Class One by a handsome margin and taking second place overall. “We sailed higher than the rest of the fleet which paid off. We expected to run out of wind towards the finish and as predicted we were forced to anchor prior to Cherbourg but our westerly position paid off as the wind filled in from that direction. We are very much aiming towards a good performance in this year’s Rolex Fastnet, however our next race will be to St. Malo and we are now looking forward to that more than ever.” commented a delighted Anderson. Philippe Falle’s Reflex 38, Puma Logic, was second and David Richard’s J/122, Jolly Jellyfish, was third.

In IRC Class Two, Paul Robson’s First 40.7, Playing Around Logic, came out top in a highly competitive class beating Rolex Fastnet winner, Noel Racine’s JPK 9.60, Foggy Dew, into second place and Cervantes Trophy holder, Nicolas de la Fourniere’s X-34, Exile/Mirabaud, into third.

In IRC Class Three David Lees’ High Tension 36, Hephzibah, had a great race retaining class honours for the second year running in the Morgan Cup, winning in style against a highly competitive field. “ Hephzibah is very much a family affair.” commented crew Mark Lees, son of owner and skipper, David Lees. “The boat was originally purchased by my grandfather in 1978 and these days it is crewed by my father and friends who all come from Lymington. Most of the crew are experienced inshore sailors who know how to make the boat go fast but offshore racing is a new concept to many of them. I think there may be a few sore backs on Monday morning after pulling up the kedge twice in the Channel! But the welcome afforded to us at the Yacht Club de Cherbourg made the class win even more memorable”. Jean Yves Chateau’s Nicholson 33, Iromiguy, was second and David Cooper and Paul England’s Dehler 38, Longue Pierre, was third in class.

Nicolas de la Fourniere’s X 34, Exile/Mirabaud, won the Two - Handed Division by just under an hour on corrected time from Nick Martin’s J 105, Diablo J, with Nick and Suzi Jones’ First 34.7, Astarte, in third.

Chris and Vanessa Choules’ With Alacrity is in impressive form adding another Sigma 38 Class win to their victory in the De Guingand Bowl. Once again Nigel Goodhew’s Persephone of London was second and Peter Ellis’ Inspiration of BOSS was third.

With six races sailed in the RORC Season’s Points Championship, the season is near the half way stage and 264 yachts have already competed in RORC offshore races. It is too early to predict class winners, especially with the Rolex Fastnet Race weighted for additional points but the yachts who are vying for overall class wins are all consistent performers, none more so that the current leaders for the RORC Season’s Points Championship. Robin Taunt’s J 109, Jibe, is in pole position just 1.2 points ahead of Nick Martin’s J 105, Diablo J. However neither of these yachts have won a single race overall, it is their consistent performance which has pushed them to the top of the leader board.

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