ICAP Leopard comes good
Mike Slade's Farr 100 maxi ICAP Leopard took Line Honours and was later declared the overall winner of the RORC Cowes Dinard St Malo Race, lifting the prestigious King Edward VII Cup.
"Absolutely marvellous!" beamed Slade. "This year Leopard has set course records in the Transatlantic Race and Round the Island and won two races outright in IRC. We have been doing the St Malo race for 20 years, but we have never won this magnificent trophy before. Well done to all the Leopard team and thank you to the RORC for organising a great race."
Loic Fequet's Multi 50 Maitre Jacques took Line Honours in the Multihull Division, claiming the Dinard Trophy for the second year in a row. "We had a great battle with Leopard," Fequet. "We were in sight of each other from the Solent to the finish, it was a difficult race with a lot of concentration required by the crew."
While ICAP Leopard and Maitre Jaques managed to stay in the breeze, the rest of the fleet experienced super-light conditions with many yachts opting to retire. Those who persevered had strong tides to contend with and resorting to kedging was a common occurrence for the majority of the RORC fleet. Those that completed the course also had to persevere and maintain concentration through two nights at sea with little more than zephyrs of wind during those hours of darkness.
In IRC Zero Harm Prins' Volvo 60 Pleomax was the winner, taking the Lloyds of London Salver.
Laurent Gouy's Ker 39 Inis Mor was first in IRC One, winning the Noryema Trophy. Gouy came second overall winning the Derek Boyer Trophy, beating larger boats more favoured to the conditions. "The most important part of the race was at the start, where we decided not to follow the rest and went south to try to get around the ridge of high pressure. At the time we had no idea if the decision had worked as we were completely on our own but at dawn we saw Tonnerre behind us and we knew that our move had really worked."
IRC Two was dominated by French yachts. Michel Peretie's A40 Stamina III was the winner of the class. As IRC Two was the largest class racing to St Malo Stamina III also claimed the Yacht Club de France Shield. "It was a race of super concentration," commented Peretie. "I am so pleased with my crew, we kedged near the start and in the Channel in very deep water but we were determined to finish, at no time did we even talk about giving up."
Géry Trentesaux's MC34 Patton Courrier Vintage was second and François Lognone's J/122 Nutmeg IV was third.
Pascal Loison's JPK 10.10 Night and Day had an outstanding race winning IRC Three and the Two-Handed Class. Loison was sailing with his son Alexis and Night and Day won IRC Three by just over an hour from Robin Taunt's J/109 Jibe, sailed by Fergus Roper. Nicolas Gaumont-Prat's First 40.7 Philosophie IV was runner up in the Two-Handed Class.
IRC Four was won by Noel Racine's JPK 10.10 Foggy Dew. The team from Cherbourg had a fine start, leading the entire fleet for much of the Solent and managed to keep Foggy Dew moving when others were forced to anchor. The smallest yacht taking part, Andrew Pickett's Laser 28 Moondog was runner up and Jean Yves Chateau's French Nicholson 33 Iromiguy was third.
The Prizegiving was hosted by The President of the Société Nautique de la Baie de St. Malo, Bob Escoffier, and the Vice President of the Yacht Club de Dinard, Paul Coirre. Maire Adjoint aux Sports, Nicholas Belloir representing la ville de St Malo, was the guest of honour. Another prizegiving will be held at the Royal Ocean Racing Club's London clubhouse on 30 July, all crews are welcome to attend.