Meet the Fleet

08 June 2012

Who Takes Part in Rally Portugal? 
Meet the Fleet
8 June 2012

One lovely aspect of Rally Portugal is that there is no 'typical' boat and crew.  Boats are all shapes, sizes and ages (and so are the sailors!), and while the ambitions of the sailors vary, all are joined by a common sense of adventure and new beginnings.
Meet some of the Rally Portugal 2012 sailors:

  Moody 44 Enterprise sailed by Russ and Jaz Altendorf
Russ had always wanted to sail, and so Jaz bought him sailing lessons for his 50th bithday.  10 years and lots of sailing later, they are testing their bluewater dream.  The Bay of Biscay will be their biggest offshore passage to date, and assuming they enjoy the cruising life, the plan is to sell-up and set-sail in spring 2013.  After the rally Russ and a delivery crew will sail the boat back to Brighton, where it will be come their home while they rent-out their house.  From Brighton it will probably be back south to the Mediterranean, but who knows!
  Hanse 461 Coral IV owned by Otto Holbak and Kolbjorn Haarr
Friends Otto and Kolbjorn co-own Coral IV, their second boat together and bought with adventurous sailing in mind.  Their plans started 12 years ago when they decided that they wanted to take part in the ARC and cruise the Caribbean.  When we went onboard in Plymouth, crew Steinar Gravdal said "This is a dream come true - Rally Portugal and the ARC!"
After Rally Portugal the crew will take the boat down to Las Palmas for the start of the ARC in November.
  Hanse 370 Gertha 4 owned by Simon Ridley (to right)
Simon has sailed around 20,000-30,000 nautical miles in Gertha 4, including an Atlantic circuit with the Rally Portugal and ARC in 2007, and the AZAB in 2011.   Asked why he was coming back for a second Rally Portugal, Simon said "Its a nice thing to do, and very social.  Its just not the same when you make a passage on your own."
Gertha 4 has lots of innovative improvments for bluewater sailing, including a bimini, bespoke liferaft stowage, solar panels, extra cockpit winches, an inner forestay and three deep reefs in the main.
  Seastream 43 Moonstream sailed by the six owners and friends
Moonstream is unusual as she is owned by a consortium of six, all of whom are equally involved in maintenence, planning, funding and sailing.  Jim Humphris and friends spent three years looking for the 'right' boat, then another two years preparing Moonstream.  Joining Rally Portugal was a unanimous decision, with team members liking the organisation and group impetus, as well as the social aspect of the rally.
After the rally there is the whole of the Mediterranean to explore, but the group are open to where their cruising may take them.
  Island Packet 465 Ailsa owned by Richard and Shelley Kennedy
Richard and Shelley have been planning their adventure for 5 years.  After Rally Portugal they'll be sailing to Las Palmas to join the ARC fleet for a transatlantic crossing.  After a season exploring the Caribbean, they have to lay-up Ailsa and return to work, but will fly-out to enjoy long holidays.  When they retire they may return across the Atlantic to explore the Mediterranean, or maybe continue on through Panama into the Pacific. 
They chose the Island Packet as a sturdy and stable bluewater design afer sailing a lighter Legend 44 for a number of years.  They've got in-mast furling, a stern arch for solar panels and sat-comms, an SSB and lots of gear to make short-handed long distance sailing more comfortable.