Vasco 2016


Advance Information for all 2015 race owners and Skippers

It is with great pleasure that I can advise you on behalf of the Point Yacht Club that the dates for the 2016 Vasco da Gama Ocean Race have been set.

Race Documents

The race will start on Saturday 23 April 2016.

Official Race Documents
All the official documents for the race are complete, and attached. These include:

Notice of Race Amendment #1

Notice of Race with Amendment #1

Entry Form

Schedule 1 - Safety Equipment and Scrutineering Check List

Schedule 2 - Trophy List 2016

Vasco Crew List 2016

In an attempt to make the entry process more simple, there are fewer onerous requirements on the Entry Form, as all the documents previously required to accompany the entry form have been excluded, with the exception of the ‘proof of payment of the entry fee’.

Safety Recommendations

With Safety always a major concern, there are two recommendations made for the race next year regarding Storm Sails.

Rally Class
In an effort to increase the size of the Rally Fleet and create more interest, the organisers have not only increased the amount of motoring time from 6 hours in every 24 hours from the start, to 8 hours, but have added the unrestricted use of autopilots for Rally class competitors.

Interesting Info from the 2015 Race

An aspect of the race that simply blew people away this year was the incredibly accurate ‘race trackers’ which allowed loved ones and followers at home to keep tabs on the race, almost in real time, with just 15 minutes between updates. It was as exciting for the followers as it was for the competitors. The tracking service was supplied by YB Tracking and sponsored by Gutsche Investment & Management Services (GIMCO) who have committed their sponsorship again for 2016 due to the huge following the race received, and the positive feedback.

Interestingly, the YB Tracking app for mobile devices was downloaded by over 800 people - a number which staggered the tracking suppliers as this was higher than for some key European races they are involved in. The race was followed in 31 different countries and had just under 5000 followers at its peak.

The Vasco da Gama Race 2015 Facebook page was supported by 900 unique followers.

Coastal ocean racing has waned in popularity in this country in recent years although the Vasco da Gama Ocean race is one of the few races which has received annual support. Plus it is a race which has always blooded new offshore sailors. Proof of this comes in the form of statistics from this year’s race where there were 120 competing crew, with 60 being ‘vasco virgins’ competing in the race for the first time. Of those 60 ‘virgins’ 49 finished the race.

More importantly there were 39 crew under the age of 25 in the race, with 25 of those finishing. The youngest under 25 crew to finish was Cape sailor Jason Gray who received the Choose Life Trophy. He was a crewman on the winning boat AL Mount Gay Rum skippered by Rob van Rooyen.

The above all augers well for the future of the race.

Algoa Bay Yacht Club and IRC National Champs

Algoa Bay proved to be exceptional hosts, and having learnt a lot this year, will add much more to the welcome competitors receive next year. Early indications are that there may well be 4 ABYC entries in 2016.

The IRC Class has announced its intention to have the IRC National Champs in Algoa Bay next year immediately after the Vasco da Gama race. So ABYC will be a busy place at the end of April 2016. The dates of the IRC Nationals are provisionally from Saturday 30 April to Monday 2 May.

Early Entries and Contact Information

Request for Early Entries
There is an earnest request from Chairman of the Organising Committee, Richard Crockett. “It always helps to receive entries early for a race of this nature as each entry helps build interest. The earlier we receive entries the quicker the momentum picks up and the more interest we receive. So, please submit your entries early”.

So far half the fleet from this year have indicated that they will compete in 2016.

So please don’t delay and enter NOW!

Should you require anything further or have any queries please let me have them and the Race Committee will address them immediately.

Information on the Vasco da Gama Race may be obtained from Lucy at the Point Yacht Club:
Tel. 031-301 4787
email [email protected]

Information on the IRC Nationals from Hylton Hale:
email [email protected]

Kind regards
Richard Crockett
Chairman - Organising Committee

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