Leopard 3 takes Monohull line honors for RORC Transatlantic Race

Published on December 7th, 2016

(December 7, 2016; Day 12) – Mike Slade’s British Maxi Leopard 3 crossed the finish line outside Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina, Grenada at 07h 22m 37s GMT today to take Monohull Line Honours and win the International Maxi Association (IMA) Trophy for the 2016 RORC Transatlantic Race.

The RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy will be awarded to the yacht posting the best corrected time under IRC. Leopard 3 has set the bar and must now wait to see if their corrected time can be beaten.

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Leopard3 at the start of the RORC Transatlantic Race from Marina Lanzarote © RORC/James Mitchell

“This is only my fourth transatlantic race since I started ocean racing 27 years ago,” explains Leopard’s owner, Mike Slade. “In the past I just didn’t have many opportunities. Racing across the Atlantic is very special; you are at sea for many days and by the time you have finished you have really gelled together with the crew. In the middle of the Atlantic you are miles away from anybody and you can let the whole damn world get on with itself. We are having fun, racing hard as a team and that is a very nice feeling as it takes you out of your normal self.

“We are delighted to have taken Monohull Line Honours but the challenge is the overall win after IRC time correction. We have got to keep our fingers crossed and that is why we pushed hard right to the end. Although the rest of the fleet is many miles behind us, we were very conscious of them all the time. It was also great to race against the ghost of Nomad IV; at one stage we were ahead, but unfortunately we didn’t see any trade winds until the last 24 hours. However it was exhilarating and at times quite scary, especially at night blasting along at over 20 knots in the pitch black. You are really flying along on the edge and if you get it wrong, you can spin out.”

The biggest threat to Leopard 3’s corrected time is Arco Van Nieuwland and Andries Verder’s Marten 72, Aragon. The Dutch Maxi still has over 500 miles to go and at the moment their estimated corrected time is five hours outside the benchmark set by Leopard 3. However, with the trade winds re-established, the opportunity for Aragon to better Leopard 3 is a very real one. Infiniti 46, Maverick, skippered by Oliver Cotterell also has a chance to snatch overall victory.

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Background:
• The third RORC Transatlantic Race starts in Lanzarote on Saturday November 26, 2016 and the 2,995 nautical mile race runs through the Canary Islands before crossing the Atlantic to arrive in Grenada
• The race is run in association with the International Maxi Association (IMA)
• The winner of the RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy for best elapsed time under IRC in 2015 was Jean-Paul Riviere’s 100ft Finot-Conq. Nomad IV also won IRC overall and the IMA Trophy for monohull line honours. Nomad IV also set a new monohull record for the RORC Transatlantic Race: 10 days 07 hours 06 minutes and 59 seconds

Source: Louay Habib. RORC

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