Six yachts were expected to finish the Antigua Bermuda Race yesterday.
Afansay Isaev’s Grand Mistral 80 Maxi Weddell, of Russia, was expected to finish around midday taking second place in Line Honours, but Weddell will be outside the International Ruling Certificate corrected time set by SHK Scallywag.
Three yachts were locked in a thrilling battle to win the Warrior Trophy for the best elapsed time after IRC Correction.
Pata Negra, of Britain, skippered by Andy Liss, Peter Grueterich’s Xpatriate, of the United States, and Kevin McLaughlin’s Rye, of the US, all remained in contention with 114 miles or less to go.
Yesterday morning Pata Negra was 83 miles from the finish and leading under IRC. Xpatriate had been really catching Pata Negra over the last 24 hours, cutting an eight-hour lead down to just over one hour.
Xpatriate was 114 miles from the finish and second in IRC. Rye was 93 miles from the St David’s Lighthouse and estimated to be just over two hours behind Pata Negra after IRC time correction.
“We are a crew that has been sailing together on various boats for many years,” Peter Grueterich, skipper of Xpatriate, said.
“We know each other very well and get along great. We trust each other and have great respect for one another.
“When we finally got the seaweed off the rudder the boat sails pretty fast!
“Xpatriate is not in its lightest form as we are bringing lots of cruising stuff with us to our home port in Riverside, Connecticut, but we picked a good course on the left side of the rhumb line and stuck with it.
“We also have a good set of complementary skills across all watches which makes it so much easier. We are really looking forward to Bermuda and of course sticking our feet in the pink sands.”
The ten yachts still racing on the sixth day of the Antigua Bermuda Race were experiencing super downwind conditions with warm air and ocean and bright sunshine.
Atlantic Rollers was providing a sleigh ride towards Bermuda but there were still some holes in the breeze and with the overall win hanging in the balance, avoiding the light patches was crucial to the competing teams.