Said to be one of the world’s greatest regattas, Key West Race Week has it all for the Northern Hemisphere Sailor:
-Steady wind (important)
-Nice temperatures (always good)
-Beautiful Venue (not bad if you’re out on the water all day)
-Great Shore-side
-Awesome Racing (not the largest fleets, but some of the best sailors are present)

After the first day of racing, some of the latest custom boats have shown that preparation is as important as the gear. IRC-2 looks to me as the most fun class with lovely yachts competing. Here ‘Sjambok’ did not perform as well as in the feeder-race last week (the design a little more focused on the offshore stuff?). The new Rogers 46 ‘Yeoman’ started well compared to that same race. The Irish Ker 50 ‘Magic Glove’ is showing off some good potential against some of the TP52’s. The production canter ‘Chieftain’ (Cookson 50) seems to perform close to her rating. I am looking forward to the firs pics of the racing in this class.

Also interesting will be to see how everything evolves in IRC-3. Here the new Club Swan 42 (a.k.a. NYYC 42) makes her debut on the racing-scene. At the moment she seems to outperform a Swan 45, in the class a French Sinergia 40 has the lead with two bullets. Surprising to me, since I thought a Sinergia 40 was designed for IMS and not IRC. I guess that there have been some modifications to the keel…

Also interesting are the OD-fleets. The Melges 24 and 32 do not ring a bell, but the Farr 40 and Mumm 30 classes have some of the best competing. In the Farr 40 class ‘Alinghi’ has the lead (and yes this is the same Alinghi we know from the AC). Peter de Ridder and his ‘Mean Machine’ currently occupy third place in the Mumm 30 class.

More info on Key West Race Week can be found here. For a direct link to the results click here.

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