Please select your home edition
Barton Marine 2019 728x90
Product Feature
RYA Handy Guide to Racing Rules 2009-2012
RYA Handy Guide to Racing Rules 2009-2012

Bellino wins RORC Myth of Malham Race

by Rupert Holmes / RORC 7 May 17:49 BST 4-5 May 2024
Sun Fast 3600 Bellino at the start of the RORC Myth of Malham Race © Rick Tomlinson / RORC

The overall winner of RORC Myth of Malham Race, after IRC time correction, was Rob Craigie's Sun Fast 3600 Bellino, racing Two-Handed with RORC Commodore Deb Fish.

Eric de Turckheim's NMD 54 Teasing Machine blasted round the 235 mile course to take line honours by a huge margin in the RORC Myth of Malham Race that provided plenty of tactical challenges for navigators, along with remarkably close competition for many.

Despite the earlier timing than usual - on the early May bank holiday - conditions were largely very pleasant, including a long downwind leg from the start at Cowes to the Eddystone light house, south of Plymouth in around 10 knots of breeze. However, competitors had to negotiate complex weather patterns associated with a small area of low pressure in the west of the English Channel, including a front off the coast of South Devon.

This timing and intensity of this was "massively uncertain" according to Deb Fish and Rob Craigie, co-skipper on Bellino. "The big question was about the timing, so it was quite challenging to work out where to position yourself.

Teasing Machine's elapsed time of 25.5 hours represents an impressive average speed made good of just over 9 knots. On the other hand, some of the smaller entries, a few of which didn't finish until almost 24 hours after the big French boat, had a different experience, including a long shut down on their final night at sea.

Early challenges included a hole in the wind in the Needles Channel, less than 15 miles from the start. Bellino gained an early advantage here: "We had been trying to stay out the pack and could see there was more pressure towards the island shore," says Fish. "We were nearer to that than a lot of the other boats and managed go our own way."

From there it was a matter of playing the wind shifts to maximise gains. Bellino opted to go north of the rhumb line whenever possible, while Tim Goodhew and Kelvin Matthews' Sun Fast 3200 Cora tended to keep in the middle and Gareth Edmundson's JPK 10.30 Insert Coin initially to the south and then further north.

"The run down to the Eddystone was really tactical and interesting," says Goodhew. "Boats that did well in our size bracket all did different things - that showed it was super complicated, because there wasn't one strategy dominating the race, which is not often the case."

Bellino reached the Eddystone at much the same time as the front, in which the wind speed picked up to 18 knots, with the wind shift turning the leg home into a reach largely under Code 0, rather than a beat. "We were expecting a very slow wind shift, allowing us to sail to the lay line," says Fish, "but then we saw boats converging from the south sailing on a completely different wind angle. It was a race for both watching the AIS and keeping your eyes out the boat and trying to work out what was happening, which makes it very interesting."

At the half way point Cora held the overall lead after time correction, according to Bellino's Rob Craigie, and it was only in the later stages of the race that the smaller boat slipped back. "The wind faded from the west, and ultimately shut down for the boats behind us, but we could see Bellino still going well when we had only 6-7 seven knots of breeze at times," adds Goodhew.

"We could see it slipping away quite convincingly in the last 15-20 miles of the race, when the real challenge for us was to keep the boat going and try to keep up with the breeze before it shut down." Nevertheless, Cora won IRC Class 3 and took second overall as well as second in the double handed fleet.

Craigie and Fish on Bellino spent the second half of the race looking over their shoulders at Sam White and Sam North on the JPK 10.80 Mzungu!, winners of both IRC 2 and double handed last year. At the finish Bellino was just six minutes ahead of Mzungu! and took overall victory 18 minutes ahead of Cora after IRC time correction.

The battle for the final podium place in the overall standings could not have been closer - with three boats finishing inside 45 seconds after IRC time correction. Per Roman's Swedish JPK 11.80 Garm took third overall, just 8 seconds ahead of Insert Coin, and Mzungu! fifth. The latter two boats took second and third places respectively in IRC2.

In the past few years the Myth of Malham has tended to favour larger boats, but in this edition Teasing Machine slipped to ninth in the overall standings. However, she retained the lead in IRC Zero, ahead of Mark Emerson's A 13 Phosphorus ll and the de Graaf family's Ker 43 Baraka GP.

Derek Shakespeare's J/122 Bulldog finished approximately half an hour later than Garm after IRC time correction, to take second place in IRC1, with Michael O'Donnell's J/121 Darkwood third in that class.

Jean-Lin's J/99 Yalla! finished second in IRC3, an hour behind Cora. However, these were the only two boats to escape the shutdown on the second evening of racing and the third placed boat, Philippe Beneben's Sun Fast 3200 Platypus didn't finish until eight hours later.

The sole entry in IRC4, Henry and Edward Clay's Contessa 38 Flycatcher of Yar, finished with an elapsed time only fractionally shorter than 48 hours, but was only two places behind Platypus in the overall standings.

Two of the new Sun Fast 30 one designs racing were crewed by young sailors from RORC's Griffin Project. Rosie Hill's team on Cap Sela finished with a commanding lead on Charlie Muldoon's Cap Polaris, and Kevin Armstrong's third placed Cap Altair.

RORC's next event is the North Sea Race from Harwich to Scheveningen on May 10. Organised in the UK in association with the Royal Harwich Yacht Club and EAORA and in The Netherlands with the Yacht Club Scheveningen and the North Sea Regatta.

View full results here
Online entry for North Sea Race

For more information about the Royal Ocean Racing Club:

Related Articles

RORC Griffin Youth | Go Racing!
Opportunities for people between 18-30 to get involved in offshore sailing 300 young sailors applied for the RORC Griffin Selection weekends and just 20 were chosen to race in brand new Sun Fast 30 ODs chartered by the Royal Ocean Racing Club. Posted on 12 Jun
Admiral's Cup update: The quest has begun
RORC is preparing for a breathtaking event of hi-tech racing The allure of one of the sport's most coveted trophies has already attracted interest from famous yacht clubs around the world. Posted on 11 Jun
Roschier Baltic Sea Race - International allure
Competitors will experience a huge variety of conditions in the enchanting Baltic Sea The 2024 Roschier Baltic Sea Race has already attracted an international alumni for the second edition of the 635nm offshore race, organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club together with the Ocean Racing Alliance. Posted on 10 Jun
2024 Salcombe Gin Morgan Cup Race concludes
Scarlet Oyster & Bellino celebrate in Dartmouth Organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club in association with the Royal Thames YC, the Royal Dart YC, and the Royal Yacht Squadron. The Salcombe Gin Morgan Cup Race was held in fantastic conditions. Posted on 9 Jun
Announcing the 2025 RORC Caribbean Programme
The Royal Ocean Racing Club commemorates the start of its centenary in 2025 The Royal Ocean Racing Club commemorates the start of its centenary in 2025 with a mouth-watering Caribbean Programme for January and February. Over 4,000 miles of warm water racing is organised, deep in the winter of the Northern Hemisphere. Posted on 5 Jun
2024 Salcombe Gin Morgan Cup Race preview
The RORC fleet will be racing to Dartmouth with Royal Dart YC opening its doors to all competitors This year's Morgan Cup Race will incorporate the final race of the IRC Two-Handed National Championship and is generously supported by The Salcombe Distillery Co. Posted on 24 May
Bulldog strides home in RORC De Guingand Bowl
A spectacular sunrise and sunset and more breeze than forecast for the latter part of the race The Royal Ocean Racing Club De Guingand Bowl Race was won by Derek Shakespeare's J/122 Bulldog with the best corrected time under IRC by just over seven minutes. Posted on 20 May
RORC De Guingand Bowl Race preview
North Sea Race hosted by Royal Harwich YC has attracted over 50 boats The Royal Ocean Racing Club's North Sea Race, hosted by the Royal Harwich Yacht Club, has attracted over 50 boats. The North Sea Race is one of the oldest in the RORC Racing Calendar dating back to 1931. Posted on 15 May
Extra Djinn wins RORC North Sea Race
The 2024 edition had 53 boats racing from Harwich to Scheveningen The Royal Ocean Racing Club's North Sea Race is hosted by the Royal Harwich Yacht Club in association with the East Anglian Offshore Racing Association, the Yacht Club Scheveningen and the North Sea Regatta. Posted on 12 May
RORC North Sea Race Preview
A fleet of over 50 boats will set off from Harwich to Scheveningen on Friday The Royal Ocean Racing Club's North Sea Race, hosted by the Royal Harwich Yacht Club, has attracted over 50 boats. The North Sea Race is one of the oldest in the RORC Racing Calendar dating back to 1931. Posted on 8 May