Please select your home edition
Edition
Noble Marine 2012 #2

South African Governor's Cup underway

by Sue Pelling 27 Dec 2014 20:56 GMT 27 December 2014

Big winds make for exciting start from Simon's Town

Lively conditions with winds reaching over 30kts made for an exciting start for the 2014/15 Governor's Cup. This 1700-nautical mile race from False Bay Yacht Club, Simon's Town, South Africa, to the remote Atlantic island of St Helena, got underway at 1400 local time today.

The strong 25kt south-easterly did nothing however, to deter the masses of spectators and well-wishers who ventured on the water, and those who headed to mountain viewpoints all the way to Cape Point to watch the 17-strong fleet battle against huge waves as it headed out to sea.

After sailing a mile across Simon Bay to Castor mark – the first turning mark just off the lighthouse – the fleet set off on a southerly course towards Cape Point – the first significant way point, and one of the biggest challenges the competitors face in the early part of the race.

Justin Spreckley and his five-strong team from Royal Cape Yacht Club on Strumpet (Fast 42) sailed impressively in the strong breeze and led off the start line. Although they were unable to hold off Kevin Webb and his team aboard the super-fast trimaran Banjo (Farrier F9AX), they are looking likely to be an early top contender in the Racing Monohull fleet.

Team Banjo, that took line honours in Governor's Cup 2012/13, is currently leading the fleet as it heads towards Cape Point. According to John Leslie from the Governor's Cup race committee, it should take the fleet about two to three hours to round Cape Point, which means they should all be round by nightfall.

The issues the fleet will face in the next few hours is the residual 4-6m swell from a front that came through on Christmas Day. This will make it a fairly lively first night, but once they are round the Point, the wind will be from behind which means they will be able to settle into the race and concentrate on tactics.

Leslie, commenting on the start, said: "I was very impressed with the fleet as it set of this afternoon. Considering it's a 1700-mile race, and considering the seriously windy conditions everyone was on top form, and there was certainly no sign of anyone holding back. It will be rough as they head towards Cape Point, and I doubt there'll be too many spinnakers hoisted in the dark, but they, particularly those who've done the race before, all know what's ahead."

Depending on the weather and sea conditions, the race can take anything between seven and 15 days to complete. The 2012/13 edition of the race took place in generally light to moderate winds. Banjo, who took line honours, completed the race in 10 days.

More details on the Governor's Cup Yacht Race can be found at governorscup.sh; or by visiting the Governor's Cup Facebook page, www.facebook.com/Governorscuprace or on Twitter at @Governors_Cup.

Related Articles

Top internationals invited to Governor's Cup
53rd annual Governor's Cup will feature top youth match racing skippers from AUS, DEN, GBR, NZL, USA 53rd annual Governor's Cup will feature top youth match racing skippers from AUS, DEN, GBR, NZL, USA and SWE. With several highly-ranked match-racing skippers (of any age), "GovCup" may again qualify for Grade 1 status, unprecedented for youth events. Posted on 22 Apr
Governors Cup presented in Cape to St Helena Race
Plus news that Royal Cape YC will organise the 2020 race The winners in the various categories for the Cape to St Helena received their trophies from the Governor of St Helena, Her Excellency Lisa Honan. A special presentation evening at Plantation House, the Governor's official residence, was held last Friday. Posted on 16 Jan
Cape to St Helena Race
New Year's celebrations at sea for these crews 'Indaba', a 34 foot Van der Stadt, is the overall winner. Finish date Sunday 6th January 18:56:22. The 'Indaba' is also the winner in the monohull class. Posted on 10 Jan
Cape to St Helena: The Governor's Cup is back!
Twelve yachts have confirmed their attendance It's been 4 years, but the Governor's Cup is back! 12 yachts have confirmed their attendance and the race, 'Cape to St Helena', kicks off on 26 December in association with the Royal Cape Yacht Club. Posted on 11 Sep 2018
Governor's Cup at Balboa day 1
Price (AUS) and Takahashi (NZL) tied for lead The world's top-ranked match racer, Harry Price (AUS), and his recent match racing nemesis, Leonard Takahashi (NZL), finished the first day of Balboa Yacht Club's 52nd Annual Governor's Cup Youth Match Racing Championship tied for the lead. Posted on 18 Jul 2018
Black Cat wins Governor's Cup 2015
Surprise win for Dave Immelman and team Dave Immelman and his team on Black Cat (Dudley Dix 38) have won the Governor's Cup 2015 after their nearest rival – Avanti – who finished ahead in the early hours this morning – declared they had switched on their engine. Posted on 9 Jan 2015
Banjo breaks the race record
In the South African Governor's Cup Kevin Webb, Sarel van der Merwe, and Brad Stemmett sailing Banjo, a Farrier F9AX trimaran, have broken the 1,750-mile Governor's Cup Race record from Simon's Town to St Helena with a time of 9 days 13 hours and 36 seconds. Posted on 6 Jan 2015
South African Governor's Cup update
Fleet creeps towards St Helena in light airs Having enjoyed nearly a week of good, consistent winds, crews in the Governor's Cup fleet are currently suffering from lack of speed as their yachts wallow in light airs 400 or so miles off the African coast. Posted on 2 Jan 2015
South African Governor's Cup update
Fleet settles in to downwind sleigh ride to St Helena After a hectic start from Simon's Town on Saturday (27 January) when winds gusted over 30kts the 17-strong Governor's Cup fleet has settled into a downwind sleigh ride on its 1,700 nautical mile course towards St Helena. Posted on 31 Dec 2014
5 minutes with Bram Weller
Chairman of the Governor's Cup Yacht Race 2014 The 27th December 2014 marks the end of an 18 year era as the Governor's Cup Yacht Race from False Bay Yacht Club in Simon's Town, South Africa to Jamestown, St Helena, takes place for the last time in its current format. Posted on 19 Dec 2014