Competitor’s Guide

Prospective entrants will find some very good advice in the Yachting Monthly article ‘Offshore Adventure’, which covers some of the experiences of four competitors in the AZAB 2019 race and lessons learned. Reproduced by kind permission of Yachting Monthly

Entering the MailASail AZAB 2023? Here’s what you need to know…

The Basics

The AZAB has traditionally been open to single or two-handed crews.

In 2023 there will be a limited number of places for ‘crewed yachts’ with a maximum of four people on-board. Whilst the trophies will remain solely for single or two-handed entries, crewed yachts will compete for keepsakes. (If numbers for the ‘crewed’ class exceed the number limit a waiting list will be opened, and places assigned should places become available).

The race departs from Falmouth Harbour, in the UK, to the town of Ponta Delgada on the island of São Miguel, part of the Azores Islands in the mid-Atlantic. 

There will be four monohull classes, split on handicap and a single multihull class. Starts will be for Class M, Class 1, Class 2, Class 3 and Class 4 regardless of crew numbers. The regatta will be governed by the rules as defined in The Racing Rules of Sailing, and boats will be rated using the IRC handicap or MOCRA handicap for Multihulls. The latest Edition of World Sailing Offshore Special Regulations will apply.

Is my boat eligible?

The regatta is open to boats that:

a)  are seaworthy Monohull or Multihull boats with hull length between 8.23m and 18.5m inclusive

b)  are sailed either single-handed or two-handed or with a maximum of four people onboard

c) have a current IRC rating or MOCRA Certificate

d) comply with OSR Category 1 requirements and all other requirements laid out in the Notice of Race and Amendments

Boats must carry a satellite telephone communication system which allows two-way voice communication with the organising committee throughout the race.


All competitors must complete a non-stop qualifying passage, under sail alone, of not less than 300nm (or as specified in any amendment to the NoR) in the boat in which they will complete the race. The passage must be done alone if single-handed, or with your crew if double-handed or ‘crewed’. The skipper and crew must each be a minimum age of 18 years on the day the race starts from Falmouth.

If it is intended that the boat be sailed single-handed in one leg and two-handed/crewed in the other leg then two separate qualifying passages are required, one single handed and one two-handed/crewed with the actual people who will compete.


The race will start from Falmouth at 1200 BST on Saturday on 3rd June 2023.  (Notice of Race and The Sailing Instructions will provide all final details)

Expressions of Interest are being taken now by completing the form. This will enable the Organising Committee to keep you updated. An initial deposit will be requested, on payment of which you will become an official entrant.

Keep up to date with the AZAB 2023 on social media.