On Saturday, 10 intrepid yachts set off into the teeth of 25-knot winds and rain in the 45th Peg Legs Round Tortola Race. Just under four hours later, vintage trimaran Triple Jack was first across the finish line off Nanny Cay, followed by Spike, a J/111, 47 minutes and 13 seconds later. Pipe Dream crossed the line just under 22 minutes after Spike.
Triple Jack comfortably won the multihull division and just squeezed Pipe Dream out of the overall prize by six minutes on corrected time. However, Pipe Dream won the racing division beating Spike to second place by just under four minutes on corrected time. IC24 Foxy Lady, skippered by Andrew Waters, was third on corrected time after almost six hours on the water. Girasoli, skippered by Keith LiGreci, won the cruising class for the third year after five hours and 36 minutes of racing.
The stiff breeze held throughout the day and it was not without its mishaps. Igoodia retired after tearing two headsails – one before the start, on just after the start. Pipe Dream had a death-defying broach in the ‘saddle’ – the gap between Guana Island and Tortola – which saw their keel leave the water and the cockpit fill with water, shipping water down the companionway.
“After that we decided to have lunch,” said Chris Haycraft, Pipe Dream’s skipper, “but I did manage to convince the crew to get the spinnaker back up for the rest of the downwind run down the north side of Tortola.”
The wind off Cane Garden Bay was light with big gusts. Once through Soper’s Hole Pipe Dream hid from the current and short-tacked up the south side of Tortola to the finish. “I think it was windier tacking from Soper’s Hole to Nanny Cay than it was in the morning heading from Nanny Cay to Beef Island,” added Chris.
“This is a tough one to win,” Chris concluded. “We haven’t won it many times. I think the weather scared some contenders off. It was a great race but stressful and tiring.”
Spike, a newcomer to the BVI racing scene, was skippered by RBVIYC youth sailing alumni Sam Talbot.
Three classes – racing, cruising and multihull – took part in the 45th annual Peg Legs Round Tortola Race organised by the Royal BVI Yacht Club and sponsored by Nanny Cay. The fleet sailed anti-clockwise around Tortola. The Peg Legs Round Tortola Race is the fourth race in the Gosling’s Series.
Pipe Dream Chris Haycraft 1 (5:05:43/4:28:44)
Spike Sam Talbot 2 (4:43:56/4:32:35)
Foxy Lady Andrew Waters 3 (5:54:25/4:35:23)
Black Pearl Jon Charlton 4 (6:08:28/4:46:18)
Igoodia Doug Baker DNF
Giasoli Keith LiGreci 1 (5:36:49)
Diva Steve Roos DNF
Triple Jack Richard Wooldridge 1 (3:56:43/4:23:00)
40 Below Ron Woit 2 (7:10:00/6:01:12)
Wildfire John Hayes DNF
Nanny Cay Challenge
Round Tortola Records were not broken this year. Aiyana holds the monohull record of 3 hours, 29 minutes and 44 seconds, set in the BVI Spring Regatta’s Round Tortola Race on March 26, 2013. Triple Jack re-gained her overall/multihull record on October 25, 2012, after making the circumnavigation in two hours, 40 minutes and 18 seconds.