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January 05, 2011

Heineken Cape to Rio sets sail this month

waterfront yachts

The V&A Waterfront. Photo courtesy Steve Crane

The first three Saturdays in January will see plenty of yachting action in the Mother City as the Heineken Cape to Rio yacht race gets underway.

Saturday, January 8, is the official send-off party at the V&A Waterfront. Cape Town-based band Macstanley (previously known as Flat Stanley) will be performing a send-off set for the crews on Jetty 1 at 17h00.

As this is strictly speaking a “by invitation only” party, Jetty 1 will be cordoned off from 15h00 to 19h00. However, if you’re not on the party guest list, you’ll still be able to catch the concert from V&A Waterfront restaurant balconies that overlook the jetty, or from one of the public crew boats.

The Waterfront Boat Company will be offering prime concert viewing positions from their boats moored at Quay 5, just behind the Amphitheatre. Tickets are available on the day for R100 each.

The following two Saturdays will see competing crews set sail from Table Bay on the 5 343km (3 320 mile) journey to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. On January 15 the monohull and cruising multihull yachts depart, while the racing multihull event starts on January 22.

The end of the breakwater at the V&A Waterfront is the official starting point, after which the yachts round a marker in Granger Bay and head along the coastline to Mouille Point. The coastline between Mouille Point and Granger Bay makes for a good viewing spot, or head to the top of Signal Hill to see the full convoy as it sets sail.

January 15 marks the 40th anniversary of the first sailing of the Cape to Rio. Over the years it has established itself as one of the premier events on the world ocean racing calendar – and certainly the top trans-Atlantic yacht race.

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