Years of preparation, dreaming and hard work came to fruition for 13 of the participating Cape2Rio2020 teams, as they took to the blue and rather calm waters of Table Bay, hoisting their sails and embarking on Start One of this adventure of a lifetime, at 14h00 local time on Saturday 4th January 2020.
One of our local heroes, Capt Phil Wade is taking on this challenge to raise funds for Marine Inspirations the charity based in South Africa to provide funding for young South Africans, usually from very poor backgrounds in the townships, to embark on a career in the yachting Industry. He is sailing on a 54 ft yacht Saravah, and is hoping to raise much needed funds for the charity. The yacht is from Brazil and Phil is the only non Brazilian onboard. The best way to contribute is via their GoFundMe page www.gofundme.com/f/phil-wade-doing-the-cape-to -rio
This is the 16th edition of the premier ocean sailing event that has been held roughly every 3 years since 1971, with competitors aged between 15 and 75 years among those taking part this year.
An underlying theme among the 2020 competitors is their desire to give back as they go, with many adopting their own cause or fundraising project in a Sail4Good commitment to the ocean, the environment and their chosen sport.
At 13h50 the horn signalled the final countdown to the race. At 14h00 the time had come to set sail and they were off, with Mojie, San Salvador, Umoya, Argonaut and JM Busha 54 the first yachts around the inshore marker – before running down parallel to the promenade past the waterfront, across the bay to Milnerton Lighthouse, and then heading up the Cape west coast with destination: Rio.
For these racing teams the wait might be over, but the long voyage and work has just begun, as has the course length of approximately 3600 nautical miles. For this fleet, the South Atlantic crossing is estimated to take about 3 weeks with arrival in Rio de Janeiro towards the end of the month.