RORC Morgan Cup - Offshore race weekend

Other Events

Other Events

RORC Morgan Cup - Offshore race weekend

This three day race is normally one of the RORC’s annual down channel races and is a fairly technical race which provides most with more than enough excitement during its weekend long duration. The event is unusual in that competitors can never fully know what to expect before the start because the race committee has a choice of four different courses and does not make a final decision on which one will they will set until a few minutes before the race start.

Starts: 10am Friday, Shepards Wharf Marina 

Finishes: Ends Sunday (Time TBC)


About The Event

Usually the race starts on Friday evening so expect an early meet on Friday morning to allow time for a crew brief and shake down sail before the race. The organisers late course decision can provide a huge headache for navigators and tacticians as no-one even knows which way they will even be departing from the Solent until a couple of minutes prior to departure and you can bet your life that the challenging race committee will provide a few headaches along the way

Leaving Cowes on a Friday evening, you will be fired out into the English Channel for a spot of night watch and freighter dodging, which is a great way to get your head in the game if nothing else. Despite the intense nature of the race, the Friday evening departure ensures that you should get a bit of time over the weekend to enjoy the delights of the stopover. The race usually heads to France, allowing for some time ashore before sailing back to Cowes to arrive late on Sunday.  On the water here are challenges enough to keep your skills well honed, not least a race through the night which will give any novice to offshore racing a great taste of the thrill and spills of this exciting sport. 

For many boats that are competing in the RORC Fastnet race (**NEXT ONE 2017 - join us now!) the RORC Morgan Cup is a good shake down sail for the team to get ready for the forthcoming season – dependent on the course the miles range from 100-140nm If you are considering a Fastnet in the future – or just want to see how much fun Fastnet Qualifier races can be then this is a great race to test yourself on!

This is another popular event in the RORC calendar and generally attracts a big fleet. The race has a history stretching back as far as 1929 when the cup was donated by a member of the Morgan family of J P Morgan fame. 



What to expect/Itinerary

Offshore races are exciting especially at the start and success relies on the team working together and creating a watch system if you are unable to stay awake for the estimated sailing time, which is likely. This, and sailing at night are the main challenges for the skipper and crew as well as maintaining that all important concentration. Expect to be active for periods and involved in all aspects of looking after fellow crew onboard.

Last year we had a hard fought race which required more than a little skill to succeed in. As we raced across the Channel we enjoyed a close fought race with our rivals all the while keeping a weather eye on the tides and the tricky Traffic Separation Scheme along the way.  Even without separation schemes to keep you busy, there are plenty of challenges to keep your skills well honed, not least a race through the night which will give any novice to offshore racing a great taste of the thrill and spills of this exciting sport. 

You can expect to enjoy Saturday dinner ashore at the destination, followed by an overnight sail back to arrive late afternoon/early evening on Sunday. We like to think we will go ashore at the end of a race although we cannot always promise this if the weather forecast doesn’t allow. We do have to get back to Cowes and this may mean we turn around straight away. The skipper will make this decision based on weather forecast and crew capability as safety of the yacht and crew is the priority.


The boat

We mostly coach on yachts of between 37 and 41ft. Our yachts have been specifically chosen as they are easy to handle, great for learning! There is no denying us girls sometimes don't have the physical strength of the boys but with our technical ability and a well-chosen yacht we can do just as well. You will usually find yourself aboard an Élan 37, Jeanneau 37 or a Beneteau 40.7. All of your time will be spent living as crew-mates on your yacht.  Most of the yachts have 9/10 berths with 3 cabins and a saloon so the boats will normally have 2 persons in each cabin i.e. 6 - this is always the case for an RYA course, MAX 6 persons on-board. On some events e.g. races we use the saloon which can sleep an additional 2-4 person. 


Additional Info

What's included?

·         Fully coded yacht with safety equipment

·         Fully qualified RYA skipper

·         All safety equipment

·         Accommodation on board*

·         Diesel, water, electricity

·         FUN, FUN, FUN!!

What's excluded?

·         Transport to and from meeting points

·         Flights

·         Alcoholic drinks and evening meals

·         Mooring fees

·         Departure taxes/customs entries per person

·         Any clothing

·         *Accommodation upgrades where available



Pre Course Requirements

None. Any sailing experience is of benefit and previous night sailing is a great advantage for all concerned. Good awareness of sea sickness is advisable before a channel crossing – if you do suspect you may get sick it is advisable to read our info about precautions in our joining instructions and start taking tablets before you step onboard.

Whilst it is not a requirement, we recommend that you ensure that you have an up-to-date RYA Sea Survival and ISAF Offshore Safety certificate, before taking part in these races. 

You can undertake a DAY SAIL or a weekend or even a course to be ready for this adventure but it's not essential - or sign up to our Sail Trimming and Spinnaker Weekend and we'll discount your place in this race by £50!

Why choose Girls for Sail?

  • First of all we want to give you some freedom, we want you to feel absolutely able to do anything onboard, so we will greet you, make you feel welcome, confident and safe, and of course you won't have anyone rushing you! You can learn at your own pace with our skippers and feel the benefit of this in your handling of our yacht!
  • We pride ourselves on our levels of tuition.  There's no such thing as a 'silly' question!  There's no shouting onboard and as it's also your holiday, we want you to have fun and go home relaxed and satisfied with your time here! Not to mention you get to meet new lifelong friends! 

Our values are simple: Encourage, Support, Challenge and Respect!

How to book?

Click on the link above to view available dates - or if you have any questions please feel free to get in touch with us!

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+44(0)1983 28 28 67

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