On Saturday 25 April 2015 sixteen yachts, ranging in size from 35 to 75 foot, will embark from Durban on what they wish will be a downwind dash with the Agulhas current to the Port of Port Elizabeth 400 Nautical Miles away.
Jointly organised by Durban’s Point Yacht Club and the Algoa Bay Yacht Club the racers will return to Port Elizabeth in 2016 and 2017 all seking to claim line and handicap honours in this prestigious and longest running ocean race in South Africa.
One of the great traditions of the race is that all finishing crews receive breakfast when they finish the race – irrespective of the time of day or night! This will be available at ABYC.
Live online satellite tracking of the race has been made possible thanks to the generosity of Phil Gutsche and GIMCO (Gutsche Investment Management Company).
This year’s race is being tracked by Yellowbrick – a UK based company which specialises in tracking yacht races. Many of the major sailing events in the world are tracked by Yellowbrick. The race tracker will be updated every 15 minutes after the start.
The link to Yellowbrick will be: http://yb.tl/vascodagama2015
When one logs in to the tracker there are various blocks of information available to viewers. On the left you can see the yacht information, with each yacht name listed along with its country flag. The colours are automatically chosen, and the yacht icon on the map will have the same colour as on the list.
At the top of the list are the ‘groupings’ – typically yachts will be grouped into classes. The leader board reflects these groups, and shows the yachts in each group and their ‘leader board’ order based on the correct handicap.
Once the race starts, the public race viewer will update automatically with new positions. The leader board will update every time a new position comes in for each tracker. Position reports should be simultaneous for each yacht – e.g. if they are set to transmit every hour, regardless of when they were turned on they will synchronise together to get a GPS fix on the hour, and then transmit as soon as possible after that.
Data does sometimes take a couple of minutes to get from the tracker, through the satellites, and into the race viewer, but all the position reports should have their GPS fixes at the same time to allow for accurate leaderboarding.
A Race Viewer app can be downloaded from the app store allowing viewing on a phone or tablet. Search the app store for ‘YB RACES’.
The race viewer will show the time as South African time.
Each ping contains a time, position, speed and course over ground value. Our system then calculates a velocity made good and distance to finish, estimated time of arrival (on the water) and estimated corrected time (handicap). This is then shown on the leader board with provisional rankings for each class. As each boat finishes the recorded finish times will be uploaded to make the leader board more accurate.
The bottom line is that the system we are using is a guide for the public following the race, enabling those at home to get a picture as to where each boat is in relation to the others – and how they are doing.
Yours truly and the Longhair will be sailing down on local entrant, Wallbanger – skippered by John Tudehope.
Entries to Date:
- Al Mount Gay Rum: Rob van Rooyen – Farr 38 – IRC
- Majimoto: Jon Marshall – Farr 38 – IRC
- Nemesis: Anthony Bailes – Fast 42 – PHRF
- Bellissama: Vernon James Goss – Hanse 401 – PHRF
- Yolo: Dale Kushner – Sunfast 3200 – IRC – LATE WITHDRAWAL
- Bellatrix: Gregg Hurter – First 40 – IRC
- Gumption: Nicholas Mace – Simonis 40 – IRC
- Ray of Light: Michael Heidi Kavanagh – First 44.7 – IRC
- Rocket: Herbert Karolius – Simonis 54 – IRC
- Alkistis: Christo Moller – Sun Odyssey 40 – Rally mono
- JML Rotary Scout: Grant Chapman – Tosca 39 – PHRF – LATE WITHDRAWAL
- Star Spirit: Willie Pretorius – Sun Fizz 40 – PHRF
- Numzaan: Ron Schwalbach – Prout cat – catamaran
- Deo Volente: Trevor Donald – Lavaranos 36 – PHRF
- Alacrity: Dave Taylor – Taylor 37 – IRC
- Skitzo: Nigel Milln – Fast 42 – IRC
- Wallbanger: John Tudehope – Simonis 35 – PHRF
- HQ2: Grenville Wilson – Open Ocean 750 cat – multihull
Regrettably Yolo and the Rotary Scouts have been late withdrawals.
The number of trophies on offer in the Vasco da Gama is impressive and three new trophies have been added:
- The Dave Cox Memorial Trophy will be awarded to the 1st Line Honours boat in the PHRF division.
- The de Beyer Memorial Trophy will be awarded to the 1st PYC boat on handicap in PHRF.
- The ABYC trophy will be for the 1st ABYC boat on handicap.
Other trophies of interest are:
- Choose Life Youth Trophy: This trophy was presented to the race in 2012 by Vernon Goss. It is awarded to the first under 25 youth sailor on IRC handicap. It’s a wonderful trophy for an up-and-coming sailor under the age of 25.
- Navigator’s Trophy: This is in the IRC division.
- Vasco Virgins: For crew doing this race for the first time.
The following two tabs change content below.