Return of the Rolex Commodores’ Cup
The Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC), has announced details for the 2010 Rolex Commodores’ Cup to be held from 15-21 August in Cowes, Isle of Wight.
This tough mix of inshore and offshore races will be compacted into a challenging seven day racing schedule on the testing waters in and around the Solent. As in 2008, the handicap system will be IRC (endorsed) and there will be three rating bands.
The international teams will consist of three boats, with one boat from each of the following bands:
Class 1, 1.120 – 1.230, DLR (Displacement Length Ratio) 200
Class 2, 1.075 – 1.119, DLR 200
Class 3, 1.025 – 1.074, DLR 215
The RORC reserves the right to change the rating bands slightly in the light of any changes to the IRC Rule. It is not intended to change the range of eligible boats.
Within these bands, each boat must also comply with STIX and AVS (Safety and Stability Indices) requirements.
The three bands proved successful in 2008, and these will remain the same for 2010. This will promote close racing on the water, whilst still ensuring competing teams have a sufficiently large pool of yachts from which to choose.
The race format is broadly similar to 2008 except that the regatta will finish one day earlier so that teams will have the Sunday to travel home. The dates of the regatta have been changed for 2010 in the light of feedback from 2008. The last Cup attracted 15 highly competitive teams from six nations including Spain and Hong Kong along with multiple challenges from France, Ireland, the Netherlands, and the UK. The RORC is confident that the change of dates will result in even more teams participating.
The offshore race remains in the middle of the week and the short passage race, provisionally a Round the Island course, towards the end. The final inshore race of the series will again carry double points to add to the excitement at the event climax.
Nationality rules remain as per 2008, with a 50% requirement.
Whilst recognising the significant role the professional element has had to play in raising standards amongst the crews, the same limitations as in 2008 have been placed on the number of Group 3 (ISAF Competitor Classification Code) sailors allowed on board each boat. Class 1 is allowed two Group 3 sailors, and Classes 2 and 3 are each allowed one Group 3 sailor.
Corinthian sailors will continue to play their integral role throughout the inshore series and at the start of the offshore race, when they are required to helm.
RORC Chief Executive, Eddie-Warden Owen said: “The event came of age in 2008 and attracted attention all around the world. Moving the event to August allows countries more time to do trials and be better prepared which will make the racing even closer.”
Commenting on the changes, RORC Commodore Andrew McIrvine said: “We are delighted to be making this announcement. The English will be keen to defend their title as usual, but there will be strong challenges from France and Ireland. We also anticipate new international challenges, so the stage is being set for an even more competitive event.”
Complete details of the Rolex Commodores’ Cup 2010 will be published in the Notice of Race later this year.