After an exceptional reception on Santos Beach on Day 1 of the Six Gun Grill Trans Agulhas Challenge (TAC), powered by Iconic Mossel Bay Tourism, participating crews set off for Stilbaai at 8am on December 29. But, says race organiser Stefan Lindeque, the morning was not without incident – fortunately with no injuries sustained.
“We launched from Mossel Bay today with big swell and an easterly wind. By the time The Point had to be rounded, racers were contending with big waves and which, combined with the wind, caused one of the boats to flip. The NSRI was on hand to make sure the crew were unscathed, but unfortunately their boat will not be able to continue the race.”
He reminded that the TAC – the world’s toughest inflatable boat challenge – is a test of endurance not only for the bodies and minds of racers, but also for their craft and engines. “This is what happens over four days of racing in rough weather conditions, but everyone is positive and raring to tackle the rest of the challenge.”
Lindeque says that the extended racing timeframe on Day 1 made for a taxing first stage, but everyone involved had a good night’s rest in Mossel Bay and fast times were recorded by the top five boats en route to Stilbaai. In preparation for heavy rains and increased wind speeds, the start time for Stage 3 – to Struisbaai via Witsand and Arniston – has been set at 7am on December 30. “On the final day, the 31st, we are expecting big winds on our way to the Strand finish, but will do everything in our power to finish the race.” This year is the 35th edition of the Trans Agulhas Challenge, sponsored by Six Gun Grill and powered by Iconic Mossel Bay Tourism.