Every 2nd year Mini Transat 6.5 Racing Yachts line up with skippers like Lizzy Foreman on her Hudson Wight sponsored boat to compete in The Mini Transat race. I would love to see some Japanese sailors compete in the next Mini Transat.
The race is a transatlantic race and the boats are all “Single Handed” 6.5 meter purpose designed sloop racing yachts. The 2013 race had a total distance of 4021 Nautical Miles (nm.) which is split into two legs. Leg one is 1257 nm. from France to Canary Islands followed by 2764 nm. from the Canary Islands to Guadeloupe.
Normally one might not imagine sailing 4021 nautical miles across the atlantic ocean in a small 6.5 meter yacht. However the Mini Transat 6.5 meter yacht is specifically designed to cope with the tough conditions that may occur throughout the race and is also designed to get from one point to the next very quickly. The winner of the 2013 Mini Transat Benoît Marie (FRA) completed the race with an average speed of 8.25 knots per hour. This is a speed many bigger boat owners would be proud of.
Safety is of the utmost importance to the Mini Transat race organisers and these small boats are practically unsinkable. They incorporate the most modern safety design features as regards hull construction, stability self righting ability and safety equipment. I myself feel very safe to sail a Mini Transat 6.5 on any ocean in the world.
The Mini Transat fleet is split into two main divisions. The Prototype division and the Production production. The Prototype group is at the cutting edge of technology and is pushing the engineering limits of these boats. A lot of what is learned in the prototype boats is then passed on to the production boats and tooling for mass production is established. Several companies today offer production boats today and we find some fine examples in the pogo 3 offered Pogo Structures and the Zero from America and the RG650 from argentina as three great examples of Production Division Boats.
When racing at sea the Mini Transat offers very little comfort to the sailor as most of the internal space is occupied with sailing equipment. However when not fully equipped for long distance ocean racing the Mini 6.5 offers enough space and comfort for some great day sailing and short port to port voyages.
The Mini 6.5 racing yacht is to me the perfect boat for day sailing fun or long distance serious ocean racing. In either capacity it will keep the sailor safe and get them to their destination quickly and in high spirits.
I will leave you with this short video.
Mark Smith Japan.