Light airs faced by the rest of the fleet
The first ARC 2008 yacht has arrived at Rodney Bay, St.Lucia after a 14 day crossing. She is Karsten Moller’s Swan 82, DreamCatcherKM, skippered by Jarrod Cripps. Both boat and the nine crew looked in good shape after their 2,670 nautical mile passage from Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.
DreamcatcherKM was over 60 hours behind the current ARC course record stand of 11 days, 5 hours and 32 minutes, set in 2006 by the Italian maxi, Capricorno. The difference in elapsed time reflects the lighter airs experienced by this year’s fleet. A series of low pressure systems in the central Atlantic have caused unsettled weather patterns resulting in lighter seasonal tradewinds than is usual. Indeed, a browse through the many logs the crews have been submitting to the ARC website everyday illustrates some of the frustrations being felt, as well as the frequent change in sail plan whenever the wind picks up.
Finishing close behind was the second arrival, Bruce Dingwall’s Southwind 80 – Matelot, a regular ARC participant. Skipper Angus Fuller brought her in 8 hours behind the larger Swan, having kept pace almost all the way across from Gran Canaria.
Currently, over half the fleet still have more than 1,000 miles to cover, and, whilst arrivals over the next few days will still remain quite low, the numbers will pick up significantly from Wednesday onwards. Just in time to take advantage of the great social programme laid on especially for ARC participants at Rodney Bay Marina.