The America's Cup Jubilee, in Cowes, Isle of Wight from August 18 - 25, a regatta that celebrated 150 of America's Cup racing, has come and gone. From the Opening Ceremony with Prince Philip recognizing every 11 winning America's Cup skippers, all of who are in the Hall of Fame, to the final Closing Ceremony with a parade of boats passing in front of Princess Anne, each day brought spectacular activities that surpassed anyone's expectations. Stealing the show were the J-Class boats Endeavour, Shamrock V and Velsheda. Built between 1929 and 1938, these 130 foot-plus, boats are nothing but magnificent. For readers who will never get a chance to see these three compete on waters as historic as the Solent, or even be racing against each other again, the next best thing would be to visit the official website of the Jubilee (www.americascupjubilee.com), or photographer Daniel Forster's website at www.yachtphoto.com, for the photos of these yachts are awe-inspiring, and transport the viewer immediately across the pond and right into the heart of the Jubilee. In addition to these three beauties, boats from the 1800s, including classic like Dorade, Nirvana, Stormy, and Ticonderoga raced in the Vintage Class. Add the International 12-Meter Class, representing nearly a century of yachting history with 36 entries, in three divisions, Grand Prix, Modern and Class, the America's Cup Class, the Modern IMS Class, Modern IRC, and the Spirit of Tradition, and one gets the idea of the scale of this regatta, which was seven years in the planning. Just think of the logistics of docking and mooring more than 2,000 sailors on 205 yachts, which competed in the weeklong event. And that doesn't count in the enormous amount of spectator boats.
The 12-meter Columbia, sailing on the Solent in Cowes, Isle of Wight.
The highlight of the week had to be the Around the Island Race, a re-enactment of the first America's Cup competition 150 years ago, held on Tuesday, Aug, 21. With more than 205 yachts on the starting line in 20 divisions, the Race Committee was very busy for a good portion of the morning. Several local sailors were sailing in Cowes. Ed du Moulin, local sailor and America's Hall of Famer, sailed the Around the Island Race on Rugosa, the 75 years old Herreshoff yawl, skippered by Halsey Herreshoff, president of the Herrishoff Museum in Bristol, RI. Rugosa, who won her division in the Around the Island Race, is a NY 40 (59 feet overall), which Mr. Herreshoff sailed to England earlier in the month, unlike many boats that were transported across the Atlantic on Super Servant 3. According to Ed, "I had the good fortune of steering her for several hours, and calling the wind shifts." He also mentioned the truly awe-inspiring moment when the Needles came into sight as they sailed past on the Solent. Andy MacGowan, who grew up in Manhasset and now lives in Newport, RI, skippered Columbia, a Sparkman and Stephens design, who won the America's Cup in 1958 with Briggs Cunningham at the wheel. Many readers may recall the name Bill Mavrogiannis, who lives in Port Washington, and worked many years as a boat designer at Sparkman and Stephens. He designed the Knickerbocker One Design, one of which was recently refurbished by Tom Powers and Mike Hogan (KYC). Bill also laid the lines for Columbia, which came in 9th overall in the Prada 12-meter World - Classic division. How exciting for Bill to see boats he's designed sail so well on the international scene and also right here on Manhasset Bay. A third sailor, David Campaniello, who grew up in Port Washington, and learned to sail in the Junior Sailing Program at the PWYC, and who is now associated with J-World Sailing Schools in Newport, RI, sailed on Onowa, the oldest twelve-meter at Cowes. She was designed by W. Starling Burgess in 1928 by the Abeking and Rasmussen yard of Lemwerder, Germany for W. Cameron Forbes of Boston. Her current owners, Earl McMillen and Will Lobb restored her, and will bring her home to Narragansett Bay after spending the 2001 season at Cowes. What is interesting about this boat, other than the fact that she is beautiful and came in 11th overall for the week at Cowes, is that her fourth owner was a Mr. John F. Requardt, Jr, who bought her keel-less after the 1941 Harvard-Yale boat race, whose homeport was Annapolis, MD until 1953 when she was sold. Your reporter met Mr. Requardt's daughter, Kippy, at the New York YC last June 13, for the sendoff of Gary Jobson and crew on their two week trip to the Artic, called "80 Degrees North Under Sail," reported in the June 21 column). Kippy, an editor, who married to Roger Vaughan, the author of many books on sailing, and who was a crewmember with Jobson on their 62-foot Oyster, called Oystercatcher XXIV, spoke fondly of her memories on Onowa as a child growing up in Annapolis. Readers interested in Jobson's Artic expedition are directed Roger Vaughan's well-written and very entertaining summaries at: www.jobsonsailing.com.
If sailors who were on the bay last Saturday afternoon are wondering why Manhasset Bay YC was flying the Union Jack, here's why: The Rev. Paul Abram, a visiting minister for the month of August at St. Stephen's Church was at the Club for the wedding of local sailors Greg Corkett (he's also a frostbiter) and Carolyn Merchant. He is the Queen's Chaplain, and his home parish is the Tower of London. He has two churches within his parish - the Norman Chapel of St. John, build ca. 1080, and the Church of St. Peter ad Vincola ("in chains"), where many famous people (including Anne Boleyn, the second wife of King Henry VIII) once worshiped and are buried. Paul and his wife, Joanna, are avid sailors , and own a share in a small 26-foot sailboat, in Salcombe, their former parish, from where they often sail across the channel to France.
Congratulations to Sue Miller, skipper, and crewmembers Stephanie Baas, Cindy Jordan and Kristen McAllister for winning the Area B semifinals of the Women's Sailing Championship Nan Matheson Wood Trophy. They raced a total of 8 races (1,1,1,1,3,2,2,2) at the Coast Guard Academy, New London, CT., last week, in breeze that was anywhere from 3-10 knots of shifty winds. What is nice about the Coast Guard Academy is that the sailing Center with an observation deck is a building at the end of a pier, out in the water. Great way to observe the races - too bad we don't have something like that here in Manhasset Bay. These four talented sailors have qualified for the next and final round of sailing, when they will go to Texas for the US Women's National Championships for the Mrs. Charles Frances Adams Trophy on September 11.
More information has become available about the Women's Racing Clinic during Manhasset Bay Race Week. There were seven boats on the line this year, which was a significant increase over last year's line of two boats. The Women's Racing Clinic was started by Stef Baas and has been meeting once a month for short seminars of racing tactics, and it was this group who brought in Pat Healy, the Inter-Collegiate Coach at the Naval Academy, to speak on "The Psychology of Racing." There is no doubt that this newly formed group was instrumental in the increase in racers during Race Week. Winners for MBYC Race Week: 1. Nan Barry/Jan Sperendi, 2. Stef Baas/Loretta Chiofolo, and 3. Joan MacInnes/Carole Beineke/Lorraine McIntosh.
Bay results were unavailable at press time. And due to an e-mail glitch, Thirsty Thursday results are still in your reporter's computer. Both will be posted next week.
All photos this week are from Ed du Moulin, taken during his trip to the America's Cup Jubilee in Cowes, Isle of Wight.