Rolex Fastnet Race Archives

Proud Pilgrims

apollo‘It was pitch black, we we’re doing twenty knots, barely on the edge of control, Apollo was launched; smashing through the surf and we were heading back to Plymouth. We were all tired especially after the long beat to the Fastnet Rock but nobody let up, not even for a moment. We were going home back to Plymouth and we were going to do it in style.” Said a proud Nigel Passmore, owner of TP 52 Apollo, dockside at Sutton Harbour.

The Rolex Fastnet Race is only the third race Plymouth property developer, Nigel Passmore and his crew have done, since he bought the TP 52 in June. Nearly all the crew are from Devon. They are an amateur bunch, all of them have proper jobs and their performance in this year’s race has been outstanding. At one point they were leading the 300 plus fleet overall but as the wind died, coming into The Lizard, so did their hopes of winning the Fastnet Trophy. Currently they are fourth overall but the boats in front of them are all multi-million dollar campaigns with world-class professional crews.

“This is our first Rolex Fastnet in the TP 52 and it was a great race, we had a fantastic beat to the rock which really gave us a chance but this time, it wasn’t to be, but try and stop us next time. We are proud to put Plymouth on the map, people associate this race with Cowes and Ireland but Plymouth is were this great race has always finished and has done for over 60 years. The Apollo team are a fantastic bunch, and there are some great sailors from this area, I hope we have shown that.”