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2024 Salcombe Gin Morgan Cup Race - Preview

by Louay Habib / RORC 24 May 18:24 BST 7 June 2024
Salcombe Gin Morgan Cup Race Race © Paul Wyeth / RORC

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.

"We are really proud to sponsor the Salcombe Gin Morgan Cup Race; it is the perfect link between us given its start in Cowes and finish in Dartmouth which is so close to Salcombe and our beautiful retail store by the River Dart." commented Howard Davies Co-Founder Salcombe Distilling Co. "This event further builds on the launch of our special edition RORC 'Start Point - Offshore Strength' gin last year from which every bottle sold contributes towards ocean recovery projects with the Marine Conservation Society supporting our shared desire with RORC to support our seas. I am sure plenty of our 'Offshore Strength' gin will be enjoyed by the competing crews as part of the excellent social events at both RORC Cowes and the Royal Dart Yacht Club after the race completes!"

The RORC fleet will be racing to Dartmouth with the Royal Dart Yacht club opening its doors to all competitors. No doubt one of the 20 double-handed teams entered will be celebrating having been crowned 2024 IRC Two-Handed National Champion.

Tim Goodhew & Kelvin Matthews racing Sun Fast 3200 Cora lead the IRC Two-Handed Championship after winning the class in the De Guingand Bowl Race. Cora is defending their win in 2023 and have hot competition this year. Currently in second place is Nick Martin's Sun Fast 3600 Diablo with Dan Fellow's Sun Fast 3300 Orbit in third. Other top boats in contention to be national champions include Rob Craigie's Sun Fast 3600 Bellino, Ian Hoddle's Sun Fast 3300 Game On and Gareth Edmondson's Sun Fast 3300 Insert Coin.

"It is always an interesting race to Dartmouth," commented Cora's Tim Goodhew. "Getting out of The Solent in good shape is always important. The headlands along the route create many strategic points in the race, especially St. Alban's Ledge and Portland Bill. The finish into Dartmouth is always an area of uncertainty, you can have wind whipping around Start Point or sea breeze as you approach land. It is a great race course!"

IRC Zero

The big boat match-up between two formidable opponents is Peter Morton's TP52 Notorious and Eric Turckheim's NMD54 Teasing Machine. This will be the first time the two boats have raced each other and they are both favourites for Line Honours with almost identical IRC ratings. Mark Emerson's A13 Phosphorous II has been in fine form this season and is the overall leader in IRC Zero for the RORC Season's Points Championship. Racing in the big boat class will be charter guests on board Clipper Events' Clipper 68 Ambitious.

IRC One

After winning the De Guingand Bowl Race overall under IRC, Derek Shakespeare's J/122 Bulldog is back in action. A good result in The Morgan Cup may propel Bulldog to class leader for the season. Racing in IRC One are two First 40s; Richard Powell's Rogan Josh and Ronan Banim's Galahad of Cowes. Lawrence Herbert's J/133 Corazon returns to RORC racing, having come third overall in the 2023 Cervantes Trophy Race. Greg Borel's Grand Soleil 50 Bella of London is the largest boat in the class.

IRC Two

The class contains most of the double-handed entries vying for the IRC Two-Handed National Championship. Fully crewed racing in IRC Two has some great match-ups. None more so than the Army Sailing Association's Fujitsu British Soldier racing in the same Sun Fast 3600 design as the Royal Navy Association's Sovereign Sail Navy. The Britannia Royal Naval College has been located in Dartmouth since 1863. The Griffin Youth Squad will also be in action with two teams racing Sun Fast 30s chartered by RORC. Andrea Cupaioli will skipper Griffin 007 and Charlie Muldoon will skipper Griffin 009. Overall winner of the Cervantes Trophy Race, Trevor Middleton's Sun Fast 3600 Black Sheep will be racing. The classic racing in IRC Two is Andrew Tseng's Nicholson 55 Quailo III.

IRC Three & Four

J/99 Yalla! leads the class for the season but is not currently entered for the Salcombe Gin Morgan Cup. Philippe Benaben's Sun Fast 3200 Platypus is entered and is just four points behind Yalla! In third for the season is Rob Cotterill's J/109 Mojo Risin', which has competed in three of this season's RORC offshore races with excellent results but is yet to take a class win. Victory into Dartmouth will put Mojo Risin' top of the class. Gavin Howe's 1987 design Wavetrain is the only wooden boat in the race and has also competed in three offshores this season, including the North Sea Race. 2023 Rolex Fastnet Race IRC Four Class champion, Dehler 33 Sunhill 3, will be racing skippered by François Charles.

The Salcombe Gin Morgan Cup is the eighth race of the 2024 RORC Season's Points Championship, the largest racing series in the world of offshore racing. The impressive RORC fleet will gather off Cowes IOW about an hour before the first start at 1200 on Friday 07 June. Race fans will get a superb view of all the starts from Cowes Parade.

For more information about the Royal Ocean Racing Club: www.rorc.org

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