Lets cast a Trimaran Journal eye on the upcoming racing scene:
‘Round Barbdos Mount Gay Rum – Jan 16 – 24th – Barbados
Lauderdale to Key West – Jan 13 – Fort Lauderdale FL
Key West Race Week – Jan 17-21 – Key West, FL
Mount Gay Rum Neptune Regatta – Feb 6 -13 – Indonesia
In Round Barbados, two MOD70 trimarans are entered – Phaedo and Concise take up round 2 of their rivalry in this regatta. It should be sizzling hot competition as the Brits aboard Concise begin to make some sense of their machine and attempt to take some out of the more experienced Phaedo boys.
There are six multihulls (4 trimarans) in the Lauderdale to Key West feeder race tomorrow. Sadly, in Key West, the Storm Trysail Club has not achieved a turn around with the multihull fleet. If I read the entry list correctly, there is only one F28R entered (Flight Simulator – Tom Reese) vs one Gunboat 60 in a minuscule multihull fleet. I recall at least a 10 boat C/F28R One design fleet in past years.
Out in Indonesia, in the Neptune Regatta, there are currently 4 Trimarans racing and 3 cruising in the most exotic of the four events. Not a bad turnout for such a unique locale.
On the horizon is the Double-Handed Farallones Race in San Francisco, capably put on by the Bay Area Multihull Association (BAMA) which usually sees 6 to 8 trimarans zip out the Bay and back. This race occurs on March 26 this year, but I dont see any registration figures for it as of today.
In other trimaran race news, the ongoing Sydney-Hobart multihull controversy receded some this year, not because the nitwits at the Cruising Club of Australia relented, but because Team Australia lost her rig earlier this year and couldn’t threaten participation. Team Vodafone – Aukland based ORMA 60 and Team Australia’s competition – is currently for sale – the team electing to actually race foiling cats, rather than potentially race an ORMA trimaran.
In North America, I think 2015 Corsair Nationals in Florida had 18 boats. A long time ago, there were upwards of 50 boats attended. 2015 Summer Splash also found 18 boats attending. 2015 Cow Bay regatta in Cowitchan Bay BC brought 10 trimarans, 14 multihulls total in the best attended multihull regatta in the Pacific Northwest.
Yet, in the Tour de France a La Voile 2016 there are already 31 teams registered to participate in each of the 9 events sailing one design Diam 24’s in spectacular Pro-Am racing! in 2015 22 international teams resuscitated the moribund Tour with the introduction of the Diam 24 trimaran and generated arguably the most exciting sailboat racing on the planet.
So what to make of all this….
The Tour de France has hit upon a successful equation for race participation and excitement. Multi venue, multi race, hot one-design boat, mix of professional and amateur teams supported by generous sponsorship has made the tour the top of the list for trimaran racing. Would a similar equation have the same spectacular results in North America or Australia?