The RORC Caribbean 600 is a much anticipated race, with less than a week until the start of the 12th edition, we introduce you the crews! We are wishing them all a safe, fast and thrilling ride! We will keep you updated!
The marinas in Falmouth and English Harbour are a hive of activity as sailors from all over the world prepare their yachts for the 600-mile race around 11 Caribbean islands. Around 70 teams will be taking part with well over 700 sailors competing.
The Escapado a First 40.7, will be sailed by Westerly Racing. The crew are from Royal Victoria Yacht club, a mix of regular and new crew from Victoria BC. The skippers will be Stuart Dahlgren and Marc Vincent, with experience of 3 West Coast Hawaii Races, 3 Van Isle 360 Races, 1 Middle Sea Race and numerous other 100+ mile distance races. This will be their first time racing in the RORC Caribbean 600, they are looking to stay competitive but also safe on their travels, with their highlights being the warm wind, warm water, and seeing new islands!
On Phan a GP42 we have an international crew from the UK, USA, Germany, and Switzerland, all with a great deal of offshore experience as individuals, who have come together to race competitively in the RORC Caribbean 600. Most of the team have competed in this race before so they are familiar with the course and what the challenges might be. “The course is in itself a challenge and this, combined with the weather, offers a great challenge to all competitors. There are parts of the course where you really need to be on top of your game anticipating weather, affects from the islands on wind and trying to think 3 steps ahead tactically to gain advantage over the course.” says Catherine.
Skipper Nigel King, and Catherine Keohane have various experience between them. Nigel King is an acclaimed professional skipper, National Champion and Performance Coach with over 30 years experience of competing and coaching at the highest level. Catherine Keohane has competed in a number of offshore events including 2 Fastnets, 2 RORC Caribbean 600’s, 2 Middle Seas Races and several regattas in the Caribbean, UK and Ireland. She has a passion for sailing, in particular offshore racing, and loves nothing more than having fun on the water and being competitive. Nigel is coaching Catherine and helping her achieve one of her ambitions – to skipper the 2021 Fastnet.
For Catherine personally, this will be her first time co-skippering an offshore race and would love to to achieve a podium finish! “We are looking forward to racing Phan, an IRC1 yacht, in a competitive class, which for the majority of the team will be a first! To get around the course and finish in a good time without damaging the boat or crew is an achievement in itself.”
Emily of Cowes will be berthed in Antigua ready for the start of the RORC 600. With a crew predominately from Canada, Katy Campbell will be the skipper, a RYA Yachtmaster Ocean Yachtmaster Instructor. She runs the only RYA training centre on the west coast of North America complete with a racing program taking students all over the Pacific Northwest. Katy has had ‘Emily of Cowes’ since the start of February, picking her up in Grenada, so she will have plenty of miles on board to get to know her. Not having raced in the RORC 600 before they are all looking forward to the scenery and the sailing conditions. “Coming from winter-bound Pacific Northwest, where we either have winter gales or light summer breeze, our crew is definitely looking forward to the novelty of big wind AND warm weather simultaneously!! The start will undoubtedly be really exciting!” explains Katy.
The most challenging thing, explains Katy is “the corners! This is a race full of transitions as we try to balance sailing the shortest distance with avoiding the wind shadows of some of the taller islands. For a charter crew that has never raced together, getting through these transitions cleanly will be challenging.”