Bryon Ehrhart and crew win the Rolex Middle Sea Race IRC division with their TP52 Lucky.
Ehrhart is a veteran of the Transpac, Newport Bermuda Race, and Bayview Mackinac Race and also actively campaigns an Etchells 22. On board TP52 Lucky, the crew include some of Ehrhart’s Etchells crew, as well as Irishman, Ian Moore (crew member, BMW Oracle America’s Cup team) and New Zealander Dave Swete (2010 World Match Racing champion).
A very good trophy to add to the list.
Ehrhart was at the Royal Malta Yacht Club with his crew earlier today, and spoke about the race and Lucky’s provisional overall win.
“It’s beyond my expectations. We came wanting to do a very interesting race, and we had that, and a good performance to match.“
“The Rolex Middle Sea Race has a great reputation, which is why we came all the way down here. We thought it would be an interesting race, it turned out to be much more interesting – every sail on the boat was used, from the lightest flapper to the strongest spinnaker was put up.”
“A very, very challenging race…technically and strategically, and thankfully, we had great navigation from Ian (Moore). Those crucial calls saved us hours and hours, and I think the corrected time difference was 25 minutes, so it’s those kinds of calls that were important. To make the calls how Ian made the calls was pure genius.”
“Then, there were all the boys working the boat. This is a very challenging, physical race, and the boys worked the boat really hard all time, and kept us really focused. We had great people sailing against us that were almost always in sight, so the boat Pace, the Cookson 50 (Cantankerous), and Wild Joe, really kept us on our toes.”
Ehrhart an active member of both the New York Yacht Club and Chicago Yacht Club said, “To come and do well against the European fleets, and we’ve raced against them now, they are tough. We’ve raced elsewhere around the world and these guys are very, very challenging to sail against. All the time you have to be on your game to come here. I’d encourage everyone to come here and challenge.”
“It’s unbelievable when you see the true, spewing volcano of Stromboli, it’s phenomenal. You get to encounter different colored smoke and red lava – you don’t see that in Chicago.”
“The Rolex Middle Sea Race is a classic, and in my mind it will certainly remain a classic. I would encourage everyone to come here. This is the most interesting race I’ve ever done and I’ve done a lot.”
Lucky’s plans for next season include the Giraglia Rolex Cup next June, and then the Rolex Fastnet Race. Following those races, the boat will sail transatlantic, compete in the Jamaica Race, then to the west coast of the U.S. for the Transpac Race, to Hawaii, enroute to Hong Kong for the Rolex China Sea Race. This is a boat, and a man, on the move. But then this is the same man who on a layday before the start, along with crew member Alastair Speare-Cole, spent 4-1/2 hours scaling the 3,500 metre Mount Etna, the largest active volcano in Europe, “because you don’t get much exercise for your legs when you’re sailing.”