Pata Negra set the bar: Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race
Wednesday, August 22, 2018 12:07 PM
Giles Redpath's Lombard 46 Pata Negra has taken line honours and the win in IRC One for the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race, finishing the 1,805 nautical mile course in an elapsed time of 9 days 8 hours 35 mins and 16 secs. Pata Negra has set the time to beat under IRC for the overall win. Benjamin Schwartz and Chen Jin Hao's Figaro 2 El Velosolex SL Energies Group is the only realistic threat. They must finish the race by 19:46:11 BST today, 22 August to take the overall lead after IRC time correction. The French/Chinese two handed team has just under 14 hours to complete the last 100 nautical miles of the course.
After finishing the race, Pata Negra's crew enjoyed drinks and dinner at the Royal Ocean Racing Club Cowes Clubhouse. For Pata Negra's skipper Giles Redpath, this was an emotional return to the course. In 1998, he raced two handed with the late John Fisher who tragically was lost at sea in the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race:
"I remembered him at many points in the course; I wish all his family well and wish he could have been with me this time," commented Redpath. "It is a great memory to have gone around again. The Pata Negra crew were gathered together from many parts. We divided the crew into the oldies, the middle aged and the young ones, and we ran a rolling watch. Racing at full pace around the West of Ireland and at Muckle Flugga are the moments that I will long remember. The biggest problem was everything was wet; the ceiling and the bunks were just dripping with water the entire time. However, we started as friends and ended much better friends," continued Redpath.
Charles-Louis Mourruau's Class40 Colombre XL (The Lost Boys) finished the race just under an hour after Pata Negra to take the remaining podium position in the Class40 fleet. Three Class40s are still racing; Elin Haf Davies and Chris Frost's Aparito, Hannah Stodel's Region Normandie, and Ari Kaensaekoski Fuji.
The Lost Boys are a cosmopolitan crew from Barcelona, Bordeaux and Lausanne. Charles-Louis Mourruau was racing with his longtime friend Gery Atkins, and French sailor Loic Coudret joined them just a few days before the start. Mourruau and Atkins have a lot of experience with classic yachts, but decided to step into the world of Class40 racing in the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race:
"This is our first race with the boat so we will always remember it, and to come third is fantastic as we only set out to finish inside 10 days, which we achieved," commented Mourruau who was surprised to see his girlfriend on the dock in Cowes to welcome him back.
"It has been an amazing experience, especially going so far north and the boat has been excellent. I am on the waiting list for the Route du Rhum but if that doesn't happen we will enter the RORC Transatlantic Race and then the RORC Caribbean 600," continued Mourruau before he and his team were given bacon sandwiches from the RORC Clubhouse and they too headed to the bar and their first night on shore for over a week and a half.
On the 11th day of the 2018 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race, 14 teams are still racing.
Amazing stories, pictures and videos are coming in from the race course, which are posted in the Competitors' Blog: http://roundbritainandireland.rorc.org/news/blogs
Benjamin Schwartz and Chen Jin Hao's Figaro 2 El Velosolex SL Energies Group latest post, received on Tuesday 21 August sets the scene for the team looking to better Pata Negra's time after IRC time correction:
"Today is a great day, the first time in the race we can wear t-shirts on deck! We are getting a lot of sleep on those long tacks today before the short tacking session in the Channel! Not very easy to play the wind shift and current without a speedo and depth sensor. We will try not to ground on the coast! Looking forward to knowing the corrected race time of Pata Negra so we can write on the board our deadline and see what the routings says," Benjamin Schwartz.