Boston farewell party

With leg two of the Challenge Transat heading off from Boston tomorrow

Saturday September 28th 2002, Author: Rachel Anning, Location: United States
Tomorrow at midday EST the six identical yachts in the Challenge Transat will take to the start line in Rowes Wharf, Boston for the downwind race back across the north Atlantic to Southampton in the UK.

On board each of the yachts will be crews made up of men and women from all walks of life and nationality - from a grandmother to a student - some of whom are experiencing the high seas for the very first time.

The yachts: BG Group, Logica, Vail Williams, Spirit of Hong Kong, Team
and BP Explorer have been in Boston for the past couple of weeks since BG Group won the first race - from Southampton to Boston - in a time of 18days, 16hours 46minutes and 38 seconds.

During their time in Boston, Race 1 crews have also been enjoying the cosmopolitan city of Boston where they were met with open arms by the hospitable city, delighted to see the yachts return to their port.

The last time the yachts visited the city they were part of the 12 strong fleet of the BT Global Challenge in 2000. It is just over two years to go before the start of the Global Challenge 2004, which will see the yachts return once again to Boston and Rowes Wharf.

The crews also attended the prize giving ceremony held on the 17th September at the Corinthian Yacht Club, Marblehead where Robin Freeth won the much coveted photography prize for his depiction of life at sea aboard Spirit of Hong Kong.

The mates and skippers though have now said their final farewells to their first race crews, carried out vital maintenance on their yachts, taken out sponsors on corporate hospitality sailing days, met their new teams for the second race and engaged in training and vital strategic meetings to plan their moves for the race back to the UK.

Challenge Business has been working closely with the Corinthian Yacht Club putting the last few details together for the homebound sprint. The 3,000 nautical mile race back, known as the sprint leg of the Challenge Transat, will see some full-on racing between the crews. Just eight minutes separated the front two runners; BG Group and second place Logica and, with BP Explorer back in action after retiring from the first leg, the battle is certainly set to commence once again.

Simon Walker, managing director for Challenge Business, comments: "the Challenge Transat has been a cracking event so far with lots of hard and fast racing and adventure, assisted in part by Hurricane Gustav which swept over the fleet right at the end of the race. However the boats, which have been designed to withstand the rigours of the Southern Ocean, arrived in a pretty good shape so we've not had to do too much in terms of preparation for the next race.

"The atmosphere on the pontoons has been a mixture of camaraderie and fighting talk between the boats so minutes may be eclipsed by seconds in the dash back to the UK.

Teams for the Challenge Transat Race II:

BG Group
Skipper, Jon Burfitt
Mate, Laurence Marriott

Crew: Tom Wright - British (core crew), Jonathon Chishick - British (core crew), Jon Inglesfield - British, Ulrich Zapf - German, Maxine Sutton - British, Angela Colclough - British, John Kirby - British, Colin Stewart - British, Gordon Mackenzie - British, Nigel Gildersleve - British, Mike DelBrocco - US, Nicky Richards, Julie Irons - British

Skipper, Duggie Gillespie
Mate, Jasper Heikens

Crew: Chris McCall - British (core), Gordon Eadie - British (core), Pat Wynne-Willson - British, Kevan Dutchak - Canadian, Anne Walker - British, Sarah Gage - British, Dennis Ward - British, Ian Hoy - British, Nigel Lidster - British, John Turner - British, Ingrid Iselin - Swiss, Stuart Pask - British, Killian McDermott - Irish

Vail Williams
Skipper, David Melville - British
Mate, Steven White - British

Crew: Jo King - British (core), Richard Eary - British (core), Angus Dodd - British (core), Matt Davis - Irish, Paul Arnett - British, Diana Cottrell - British, Shirley Austin - British, Emma Pontin - British, John Rowe - British, James Bowyer - British, David Sime - British, Rowan Francis - British, Mike Wallace - US

Spirit of Hong Kong
Skipper, Ian Buchele - British
Mate, Duncan Jubb - British

Crew: Robin Freeth - British (core), Mike Morgan - British (core), Hamish Leighton - British (core), Jane Elagar - British (core), Jeff McDowell - British, Gilly Wraight - British, Peta Miller - British, John Cunningham - British, Ian Woodhead - British, Jeremy Gildersleve - British, Alistair Beslv - British, Andrew Comrie - British

Team SpitIT
Skipper, Mark Taylor - British
Mate, Duncan Jubb - British

Crew: Claire Foreman - British (core), Matt Harrop - Canadian, Peter Yarney - British (core), Bob Hannaford - British, Matt Slater - British, Fliss Philips - British, Deborah Boorman - British, Lucy Watson - British, Garth Shepherd - British, Stuat Barker - British, Ian Boyd - British, Hugh Sutherland - British,

BP Explorer
Skipper, Alex Johnston
Mate, James Allen - British

Crew: Josh Burch - British (core), Janet Pilkington - British (core), Graham Watt - British (core), David Brooks - British (core), Jim Pain - New Zealand, John Wilson - Canadian, Jeannie Mclean - British, Diana Galpin- British, Colin Mather - British, Ben Wellman - British, Anne Schiettecatte - British, Frank McCallom - British, Sinan Kunt - Turkish

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