Saturday, May 12, 2012

2012 Atlantic Cup sets sail from Charleston

Race Start for the 2012 Atlantic Cup in Charleston
Race Director Hugh Piggin and Julianna Barbieri
The second edition of the Atlantic Cup sailing race departed Charleston Harbor on May 11 under brisk winds and moderate temperatures. The Atlantic Cup fleet of 15 racing boats had been in Charleston for a week of preparations and festivities that included a skipper's party at Midtown sponsored by Pabst Blue Ribbon. Race Director Hugh Piggin is from New Zealand, and he was in charge of the Atlantic Cup HQ at the Maritime Center while the starting line was laid out. The start time was delayed a few minutes while some shipping traffic was allowed to clear, and then a fabulous race start occurred at 6:25 p.m., while the VIP balcony attendees waved and cheered on their favorite team. These 40-foot boats will be race double-handed (two-person crew) all the way up to Rhode Island, with one stop in New York to conduct some time trials. The sailboats will spend a few days on the open waters of the Atlantic, and their progress can be tracked on the Atlantic Cup website. It did not take long for peril to appear when the sailboat named 40 Degrees snapped its mast in Charleston Harbor during their very first tack! A hush came over the crowd for a few minutes until it could be confirmed that the crew was ok, and just like that they wee headed back to the marina to make repairs. The first Atlantic Cup had just four entries, while the 2012 edition grew three-fold with the addition of several racing teams here from Europe!

40 Degrees lost their mast and is out of the race

A patron from Rhode Island and PBR's Jeffrey Woytal

Sarah DeMarco and friends at the VIP party
To view past blog entries about Charleston Race Week click here.
To view past blog entries about the Charleston To Bermuda race click here.
To view past blog entries about the Velux 5 Oceans Race click here.

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