Split start for DaimlerChrysler Transat

Bigger boats to start later

Thursday January 16th 2003, Author: Dana Paxton, Location: Transoceanic
There will be a split start for the DaimlerChrysler North Atlantic Challenge 2003. The
majority of the fleet will cross the starting line in Newport, as previously planned, on Saturday June 14 to compete in the 3,500-nautical-mile race to Cuxhaven, Germany and on to Hamburg, but the larger and faster yachts will start one week later on Saturday, June 21.

This decision has been made by the Norddeutscher Regatta Verein (NRV) Hamburg with the agreement of the New York Yacht Club (NYYC). The reason for the change is to provide enough time for as many competitors as possible to arrive in Hamburg for the weeklong maritime festival to be held 4-12 July to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Hamburgischer Verein Seefahrt (HVS).

“Some of the megayachts will most likely complete the course in just over 10 days,“ explained NRV President Gunter Persiehl. “It would have been rather difficult to keep these ships in Hamburg until the start of the festivities on America’s Independence Day, July 4. All visitors to the race village, the event area at Kehrwiederspitze in front of the Hanseatic Trade Center, are meant to enjoy the sight of these giants of the race.”

At 152ft, the modern schooner Windrose from the Netherlands is so far the largest entry. Three months prior to the April 1 entry deadline more than 40 owners have entered and more than 60 additional owners have expressed interest.

The Wally 94 Y2K owned by Claus-Peter Offen (NRV) as well as the 85ft maxi-racer owned by Klaus Murmann (Kiel Yacht Club) are among those that may be affected by the belated start. “We have a long list of owners with comparable offshore racers whose entry forms we expect to receive shortly," said event manager Henning Rocholl.

The race committee, headed by Hans-Peter Baum (NRV), will divide the fleet according to first and second start in the latter half of January. This will be done based on the rating reflecting the theoretical speed potential of the yachts expressed in TCC (time correction coefficient) according to IRC.

An event week will take place from June 9 to 14 at NYYC, in Newport, prior to the first start and there will be a special program for the second group of yachts during the week preceding the second start.

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