With their visit coming to a close in Mindelo, today the ARC+ St Lucia fleet crossed the start line for their journey across the Atlantic to the beautify island of St Lucia.
Forming a spectacular site, over 70 boats gathered in the bay off Mindelo ready for their 2100 NM crossing to the Caribbean.
Blue skies mixed with light cumulus clouds, along with wind speeds of 10 - 15 KTS from the north east, provided perfect conditions for a flying start to Leg 2 of the ARC+ Rally.
With an exciting start, first over the line was the Beneteau Oceanis 473, Silent Progression skippered by Mark Mcinnes from Australia. They were closely followed by Orama also a Beneteau Oceanis 473 with an international crew form Norway, Canada and Denmark. Third over the line, was the trimaran Minimole a Neel 47 from Italy. The rest of the fleet followed on smoothly across the line.
Heading south west, the fleet will pass between the islands of São Vicente and Santo Antão providing dramatic scenery both to port and starboard. Turning westward around the south of Santo Antão they head on out into the Atlantic and on to their destination, St Lucia.
The journey is expected to take approximately 13 days after which the fleet will arrive into Rodney Bay Marina where they will be met by the yellow shirt team who will be ready to guide and welcome the fleet throughout the night and day.
On arrival participants can expect to enjoy a full programme of events to include street parties, welcome cocktails, tours of the island and tree planting (a way for crews to contribute to the island’s environmental projects). They are sure to be met with a warm smiling welcome from the locals.
Special thanks to Lutz Meyer-Scheel, General Manager of Marina Mindelo, and to all his staff for their hard work and prior preparations in the marina, the Maritime and Immigration Police of São Vicente for their support during the fleet’s visit to Mindelo, and to Kai Brossmann and his team at Boat CV for assisting with all the repairs and spares requested by the fleet.
Participants have had the opportunity to embrace the local areas and ways of the people from Cape Verde and experience the dramatic scenery, striking coastline, and learn more about the history and culture of these unique islands. Thank you to all the people of Cape Verde and we look forward to seeing you again next year.
Each boat has a satellite tracker on board enabling the fleet to be followed as they cross the Atlantic towards the Caribbean. To view the boats progress and read their blogs posted on route, please visit the World Cruising Club website here