RORC CARIBBEAN 600: AMERICAN YACHTS DOMINATE
American teams are expected to continue their stronghold at the 10th edition of the RORC Caribbean 600. The 2018 edition is set to begin on February 19 with a record number of sailors and yacht set to partake.
There are 13 American teams featuring in the event in Antigua, West Indies. George David’s Rambler 88 is one of the favourites to clinch the top prize. Peter Aschenbrenner’s Paradox and George Sakellaris’ Proteus are also experienced teams expected to keep the American flag flying high in the Caribbean islands.
France, Great Britain, and Australia are also expected to rival the American teams. Ireland is another top contender with numerous sides already in Antigua, including Afloat Sailor of the Year Conor Fogerty. For the past ten years, American sides have always been dominant. They hold the monohulls and multihulls record and have won the trophy six times.
Maxi Rambler 88 is back in the race this year with George David as captain. David has won three line honours and is very experienced. When he was with Rambler 100, he won overall under IRC in 2011, setting the monohull race record at 40 hours 20 minutes 2 seconds. The team is one of the favourites especially with their award winning and experienced teams in every department. Rambler 88 has three-time America’s Cup winner Brad Butterworth on their team.
Debutants Ludde Ingvall’s Australian Maxi CQS and Philip Rann’s British Maxi La Bête are other sides that pose a threat to Rambler 88.
Sakellaris will rival his compatriot for his unprecedented third RORC Caribbean trophy IRC overall. The team also has an all-star cast including Stu Bannatyne on leave from Dongfeng team in the Volvo Ocean Race.
Nigel Irens designed the 63ft American trimaran with 38 knots top speed in 2013 for the Paradox. Aschenbrenner will be leading the team and hoping to clinch a prize in multihulls.