The Stockholm Archipelago raid is four days of long endurance on F-18 Catamarans racing and weaving through the Swedish archipelago, trying to avoid rocks while doing 20+ knots…Each day the 22 competitors sailed anywhere between 65-80Nm with an hour lunch break. In order to enter the event you had to apply and be granted entry by the event’s organizers, though only a maximum of 30 boats are allowed to come for each edition.
Logistics wise, both skipper and crew were equipped with a GPS to look at and avoid rocks while making tactical decisions about which way to round islands. The crew also had to carry a large number of safety gear such as knives and flares.
Jai recalls the most difficult part of the trip being the start of each morning, getting back into wet sailing gear with aching muscles knowing that you’re about to sail another 8 hours that day…
Jai and the skipper Lucy Nissen were the proud winners of the youth class, as well as 5th overall. Considering that they are a very light team in what was heavy conditions, that they normally don’t sail together, also they haven’t had to navigate and dodge rocks before, and that was the first time they have sailed a C2 so the achievement is outstanding.
At the moment there is no similar race in Australia, though Jay Tooleys and Oli Hartas, an Australian filmmaker who went to film the event, are discussing creating an international F18 raid event in the Whitsundays, sailing between reefs and tropical islands. They definitely see the potential to organize one.
Jay’s next project is the A-class world championships in 4 weeks down in Harvey Bay.