Double Handed Racing

Double Handed Racing
Double handed yacht racing is becoming a popular way to race. The number of boats managed by a double-handed crew entering in JOG (Junior Offshore Group) and RORC (Royal Ocean Racing Club) races are steadily increasing and the 2013 ROLEX Fastnet overall winner was a double-handed boat, adding to the interest in sailing with a smaller crew.

This increase in interest is being reflected in boat design. Manufacturers such J-Boat, Jeanneau and JPK are designing boats that can easily be sailed with a full crew or double-handed due to the increased demand in this flexibility from boat buyers.

The attractions of double-handed racing are easy to see. Many sailors use double-handed racing to increase their sailing skills which can then be utilised when racing on fully crewed boats, a smaller crew means less people to manage or organise and the asymmetric spinnaker used on most boats suitable for double-handed racing makes downwind sailing easier.

Double-handed races such as the Fastnet Race, Transat Jacques Vabre, and Barcelona World Race are raced in state of the art Open 60 and Class 40 (Open 40) yachts. The crew of two push themselves to be the fastest boats without a full crew to perform manoeuvres and spend long periods alone on deck sailing the boat themselves. Without the support of a crew specialising in key racing roles double-handed sailors must understand what is required in all the different race positions.

In 2017 we will be launching our double-handed racing programme. The programme is designed to give experienced sailors the opportunity to race double-handed.  We will be using a Mini 6.50 as a platform and organising a number of inshore, coastal and offshore races.  The Mini 6.50 is a 6.5m open class boat similar in many ways to a Class 40 or an Open 60, but a little bit smaller.  It is still capable of achieving speeds in excess of 15 knots due to its large sail plan.

Don’t be fooled by its size, the Mini 6.50 is a capable offshore racing boat with it own Mini Transat Race.  As the name suggests these “pocket rockets” are sailed single-handed from France to Brazil with a stop-over at the Canary Islands.  This is a distance of 4000 miles and these boats are where a lot of single-handed sailors like Dame Ellen MacArthur proved their proficiency at single-handed sailing before progressing to larger boats like Open 60’s.  Yacht designers often try out new technologies on boats entering the Mini Transat Race, such as rotating masts, water ballast and canting keels to prove they work before they become mainstream. These new technologies add to the interest in racing these boats.

Our boat is a Pierre Holland Prototype with a sliding keel and water ballast, a 42m2 sail plan and a 2m rotating bowsprit to project its 48m2 asymmetric spinnaker.

Double Handed Racing


Key Roles – Helming, Trim, Navigation and Foredeck

Dieppe Dash, Brighton – Dieppe- Brighton, two 70 mile offshore races with a short stopover in France.


All double handed racing is one to one training with an experienced race coach.

Cost £450 pp a 10% discount is available if booked with our Advanced Racing Skills package 


If you would be interested in our double handed race programme please contact us to register you interest.