Ludde Ingvall and his team on the super maxi CQS have taken line honours in the Royal Ocean Racing Club’s Trans-Atlantic race from Lanzarote, Canary Islands to St. George’s in Grenada.
The sleek blue and white yacht crossed the finishing line off the Port Louis Marina at 12:03:08 having taken 11 days; 0 hours and 3 minutes for the 3,000 mile race, “We achieved what we set out to do. I am proud and happy,” was the skipper’s first reaction.
Ludde paid tribute to his team, who had the courage to make an early gamble in the race, by heading south when everyone else chose a northerly course. “It is not easy to go against the rest of the fleet,” he commented, “It took guts to go south. The models said go north, but experience said go south.
“It looked really bad for a few days, but the team remained calm and sailed really well, then we popped out into the lead.” They finished with a margin of 545 nautical miles over the second boat, Jochen Bovenkamp’s Aragon.
All was going so well until just two days ago when CQS suffered a huge knock down when hit by a 40 knot squall, which blew out sails and temporarily wiped out much of their electronics. A great test of a team is how they react to a crisis, “this team performed brilliantly,” commented the skipper.
During the crossing the CQS team have been raising funds through Team Rubicon to help communities in the British Virgin Island to rebuild their schools after the devastating hurricane season,
Talking about the Royal Ocean Racing Club’s race Ludde said, “I love it, it’s great to be back in the Atlantic and especially nice to be first. We have a young crew on board and it is especially rewarding to give them this chance.” He concluded, “ we have eight nationalities on one boat and everybody was focused on the same finish line. It was tough, but we worked as a team and looked after each other.”