It is always nice to beat old records

2019-07-02 - ÅF Offshore Race It is a happy Bouwe Bekking coming ashore in Sandhamn after the Record race. To beat the record speed CQS set from 2017 with almost 2 knots is of course one of the reasons to call this year´s ÅF Offshore Race as “quite a nice trip”. But Bouwe is also humble.

-Someone will beat this record, perhaps already next year, but it is always nice to own a record. And to do it with such a fantastic crew is also great.

Bouwe salutes the ÅF Offshore Race spectacular sailing format, with the start in the centre of Stockholm and the, from his point of view, a bit nervous race through the archipelago. But in terms of the competing VO65, Amber Light, he was never nervous.

We were ahead of them all the way, for a while as much as 10 NM so we controlled the situation. Just before finish we had a thunder storm just west of us and we were sailing through very weak winds so it is not over until you cross the finishing line.

Sometimes in my thoughts, all my Volvo Ocean Races glanced passed and what happened there ….. this is offshore racing and you can never take anything for granted.

Onboard was solid Swedish navigation knowledge with none less than the most qualified Swedish Offshore sailor, Roger Nilson.

“I should say that it was a tuff race” says Roger Nilson. And it was fast and wet on deck. That it would be a record I understood when we were out of the archipelago. If the archipelago race had taken too long we would not be able to make the record. We worked with the meteorologist Lage Larsson, probably for the 30th time, and he is always a great asset when we plan the race. Our boat is made for the Southern Ocean and hard winds. Not one single thing broke. We were a great crew onboard, I haven’t sailed with Bouwe for many years but we made two Volvo Ocean Race projects together. Then it was nice to sail with my old friend Anders Lewander, it is almost strange that we never sailed together before. He is very good and I am really impressed by him. Then Pelle Norberg was with us. He is the project manager who put everything together.

Facts:The new record is an average speed for the 352,1 NM of 13,01 knots.