This is his report on his participation in the first leg of the ARC + World Rally from the Las Palmas in the Canary Islands to Cape Verde off the west coast of Africa and then onto the Carrabean.
“We arrived in St Lucia on Wednesday 30 November after 14 days 5 hours crossing the Atlantic. It is such a vast epic piece of water. There were 70 odd boats in the ARC+ rally and we did not see any other vessels for many days. The sea state across was benign and very little wind. We had to motor a lot - around 6 days. This was not what the brochure promised.
The alternative normal ARC rally left Las Palmas a week after us but did not divert down to Cape Verde. It received a pounding. One boat sank, and the family with two children were picked up from their life raft by a commercial vessel. There were several DSC alerts though we were too far away to even hear the subsequent radio call.
The passage down the coast of Africa was great. There were good moderate to big swells and strong winds of 15-29 knots. We flew twin headsails.
There are still boats coming in from our "rally". Many of them have no fuel little water and are low on food. Some of them are still are a couple of days out.
We leave for Antigua on Sunday from where I will be flying back to Melbourne arriving on the 11th of December.
Some very exciting news. The lovely owners of Miss Tiggy, James and Tiggy Nathan, have asked me to come back to Antigua around the 14 January to join them in the Oyster World Rally. It goes through the Panama Canal, and to the Galapagos and Fiji etc. I am not exactly sure but you get the general direction, ending up in New Zealand and then onto Australia. It did not take me long to consider this opportunity. It is a paid position, so I have resigned from work as we will not be home until October 2017.”
Robbo has returned to Melbourne and sailed on Matador in the 20 knot+ south westerly twilight race on Wednesday 14 December 2016. He is reported to have advised that he intended to renegotiate to return every month so he could experience the thrill of gybing a spinnaker and planning down Port Phillip swells at 15 knots!
Robbo also took the time to sail on Christine in the Cock of the Bay and Melbourne Devonport.
Robbo returns to Antigua on the 11th of January 2017 for the next leg of his adventure in sailing across the Pacific. We wish him well.
The picture shows Robbo in the foreground and behind him Commodore Marcus Coppens and Christopher Morse.