Rallies

AFTER TWO BOATS HAD BEEN ABANDONED, after people had been hospitalized, after we finally (and gratefully) reached the safety of Virgin Gorda, Steve Black, who had organized the rally, held a "debriefing" session."This is not something anyone would go through willingly," he explained to the crowd. "It's important that sailors have short memories."
Sign up for SAIL's 2014 Secrets of the ICW Seminar in Annapolis Maryland on October 12, the Sunday of the Annapolis Boat Show
The ARC, which starts each November in the Canary Islands, is very much a European event and the Americans who run it are often a bit out of the ordinary. Without doubt, the least ordinary American boat in this last edition of the rally was the Gunboat 66 Phaedo.
SAIL's Snowbird Rally down the ICW announces a new stopover in Beaufort, South Carolina, complete with low-country dinner, music and free dockage
The Atlantic Rally for Cruisers, which runs each November from the Canary Islands to the West Indies, is the most successful cruising rally in the world, with over 200 boats participating every year. It is also primarily a European event, with most boats hailing from Great Britain, Germany and Scandinavia. 
While the Caribbean 1500 fleet was cooling its jets in Hampton waiting for Sean to expire, another seasonal bluewater cruising event, the North American Rally to the Caribbean (NARC), was running into some serious trouble farther north.
For many, the denouement of the 2011 Caribbean 1500 rally took place in a crowded conference room in Hampton, Virginia, on Wednesday, November 9, two days after the rally’s original start date. The atmosphere in the room, as skippers gathered for what was expected to be the final weather briefing, was taut with expectation.
On arriving at St. Georges, Bermuda, this past May to cover the 2012 ARC Europe rally, I quickly found there were four boats in particular that had already formed an unusually close bond.
This year as the ARC Europe fleet departed Bermuda, the Azores high was centered abnormally far north, near 46 degrees, blanketing the middle latitudes with light and variable winds...

2012 ARC Blog

by Meredith Laitos, Posted November 24, 2012
Follow the start and progress of the 2012 ARC with updates by senior editor Meredith Laitos, on location in Gran Canaria. Brought to you by SAIL and the World Cruising Club.
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