Start Antigua: May 9, 2018

Hamilton, Bermuda: July 3, 2017: The Royal Bermuda Yacht Club announces that the second edition of the Antigua Bermuda Race will start on the May 9, 2018.

The 935-mile offshore race is organized in association with Antigua Sailing Week and is supported by the Bermuda Tourism Authority. Yachts of 40ft and over will be racing under the IRC Rating Rule, MOCRA and the CSA Racing Rule, with the latter amended to permit boats to use their engines, subject to a time penalty. The Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, with many year's experience hosting the Newport Bermuda Race, will guarantee a fantastic welcome and a great party.

"We have had great feedback from the competitors who took part in the first race," commented Race Chairman, Les Crane. "The America's Cup put Bermuda in the spotlight as a superb sailing destination and the Antigua Bermuda Race is designed to carry forward this legacy. The race will start just a few days after Antigua Sailing Week on May 9, 2018, a time when a lot of boats gather in Antigua before returning to North America and Europe. The Antigua Bermuda Race gives sailors an opportunity to safely experience about a thousand miles of Atlantic Ocean racing in company, at a time of year when conditions should be ideal."

"This is exactly the result we planned for when the Bermuda Tourism Authority supported the inaugural Antigua Bermuda Race this year," said Pat Phillip-Fairn, chief product and experiences development officer at the Bermuda Tourism Authority. "The America's Cup inspired the Antiqua Bermuda Race in the first instance and Bermuda's high quality nautical experience is what has them coming back in 2018. This is an exceptional America's Cup legacy event and we are excited to welcome it back to the island in May 2018."

Competitors are invited to express their interest in the Antigua Bermuda Race at: antiguabermuda.com/contact-us/survey

Spirit of BermudaThe Antigua Bermuda Race organised by the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club in association with Antigua Sailing Week is a new fixture in the offshore sailing calendar. Supported by Bermuda Tourism and Gosling's Rum. The race course is 935 nautical miles as the crow flies, but most teams covered 1,000 miles of the Atlantic to complete the challenge. The inaugural race started from Antigua at noon on Friday 12th May 2017. The highly diverse 21-boat fleet set off into the Atlantic Ocean with ample time to arrive in Bermuda to experience the 35th America’s Cup.

Well over 200 sailors from nine different countries attended the Crew Party held at the historic Copper & Lumber Store Hotel in Nelson's Dockyard, Antigua with competitors enjoying canapés and cocktails provided by Gosling’s Rum. Antigua Bermuda Race Chairman, Les Crane, who was competing in his Farr 56, Monterey commented: “The variety of the fleet shows the wide appeal of the race and bodes well for the Antigua Bermuda Race to grow in future editions. The America's Cup in Bermuda has ignited interest in the race this year, however it is a well-known route for yachts leaving the Caribbean bound for the Eastern Seaboard of the United States as well as destination in Europe. Our intention is that the Antigua Bermuda Race will be an annual event, popular with a wide variety of yachts.”

El Oro finishHamilton, Bermuda, May 20: All teams racing in the Antigua Bermuda Race have now arrived in time for tonight's prize giving to be held at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club. Tim Wilson's Australian classic ketch El Oro, led the group of corinthian teams that have refused to put on their engines, showing tremendous tenacity in sticking to sail power only for over a 1,000 miles of light airs sailing. El Oro crossed the finish line at St. David's Light shortly before 21:30 local time on Friday May 19th and in doing so claimed second place in CSA Classics and third in IRC.

AvantiBy 1000 ADT May 19th, five more yachts had completed the Antigua Bermuda Race, with two of those teams making the provisional podium for the race overall. The Royal Bermuda Yacht Club was a popular venue last night as well over a hundred sailors gathered to share a few Gosling's Dark ‘n Stormies and tales from their Antigua Bermuda Race.

At dawn on Friday May 19th, Jeremi Jablonski's American Hanse 43, Avanti crossed the finish line off St. David’s Light, Bermuda and the crew were delighted to find out that they were provisionally in second place overall for CSA and IRC.

Les CraneEsprit de Corps IV, skippered by Gilles Barbot finished the Antigua Bermuda Race on Thursday May, 18 after seven days at sea. For the last day and a half of the race, the French Canadian Volvo 60 had six extra passengers; Les Crane and the crew of Monterey who had to abandon their sinking Farr 56 in the early hours of Wednesday, May 17, 200 miles from the finish in Bermuda.

After safely arriving in Bermuda, Monterey's skipper and Antigua Bermuda Race Chairman, Les Crane was full of emotion about the incident and described the rescue in detail. Esprit De Corp IV effected the rescue, but two other yachts also diverted to assist, Spirit of Bermuda skippered by Michael Moreland and Challenger, skippered by Chris Stanmore-Major. The rescue was also aided by RCC Bermuda Radio who relayed communications.