Svea JClass (Photo © JClass/Carlo Borlenghi )

Svea JClass St. Barths Round the Island (Photo © JClass/Carlo Borlenghi )

 

Svea bounced back from one small error to retain their unbeaten record in the three boat J Class fleet at the first regatta of the season, the St Barth’s Bucket. It was the first ever round the island style coastal race for the Svea crew which is lead by their tactician, 2004 Olympic silver medallist Charlie Ogletree with Kenny Read sailing as strategist.

Though Velsheda sailed impeccably in the 12-17 kts SE’ly breeze and lead all the way around the scenic 23 nautical miles counter-clockwise circumnavigation of the island of St Barths, Svea was close enough at the finish line to save their handicap allowance and win by a mere 17 seconds.

Key to Velsheda’s early lead was the timing they chose to tack in to the island after the start. They chose to hang out early on during the short 20 minute beat to the corner, timing their tack in towards the island so that they could make the double gain of being inshore boat and getting the accelerated, lifting breeze at the corner. That was enough to allow them to break free of Svea and Topaz and build a small lead as they reached and then ran downwind along the outside, windward side of the island.

Svea shed some time when they lost the tack of their spinnaker on the second hoist, letting Velsheda away slightly, but thereafter they showed good downwind pace and closed down the famous J Class ‘original’ which won this race last year from 2017’s fleet of six boats.

After the mid-race cloud cleared for the final beat back up to the finish, the breeze picked up nicely to 16-17kts. With clear skies Velsheda and Svea stayed right and made use of a nice right shift, lifting on starboard and both stepping slightly further clear of Topaz which had sailed a good race, always in touch with the two yachts in front. The straightforward course offered little in the way of tactical passing options on the downwinds especially, and it was very much a boatspeed test for the trimmers and helms.

“We had a good race, even if we proved ourselves a little short on practice when the tack came off. We could adjust our strategy a little at that time but that cost us a bit of time. That was a clear case of lack of practice. We could not gybe until it was sorted.” Recalled Svea’s tactician Ogletree, “But we really just focused on our boatspeed, staying close enough to Velsheda. Tom did a great job steering the boat all the way around the course, it needed a high concentration level and he stuck to it.”

Adding their first coastal race win as a crew to yesterday’s two windward-leeward race wins Svea, her name meaning ‘Swede’ are in clear charge of the popular Caribbean regatta at its midway stage, four points ahead of Velsheda which has now sailed 2,3,2 from the first three races.

Velsheda’s tactician Tom Dodson admitted they could not really see what more they could have done in order to open enough time on Svea. ” I feel like we sailed really well. It was a good day but we cannot really deal with Svea, we are just racing her boat for boat and so we are happy to have beaten them across the line really. We had a plan and stuck to it and that seemed to work for us. We could have been a click closer to the line at the gun but we had our strategy to the corner just right and popped out ahead. We wanted to get inshore to the first headland to get to the lift, the accelerated breeze and the flatter water. That is what we thought and it worked.” Dodson recalled.

“Our boat is going well and Ronald steered really nicely and the trimmers were great. Svea got within about three boat lengths down the run and there was nothing we could do about that. We got away a little on the final beat as the breeze picked up. I feel we are sailing the boat as well as we can.” Dodson adds “And what is nice is that Ronald will go from here and cruise the boat like he always has.”

Once more the 2016 launched Topaz were in the mix early but faded slightly towards the end of the race, crossing third. Topaz crew boss Tim Kröger concluded: “We sailed well. Make no mistake here we still think of ourselves as the new kids on the block in this class. We are still learning day by day. Velsheda have been at this for a decade. But we are loving it. We have a great group here and we are enjoying learning together. There is a great atmosphere on board and we know how lucky we are to be doing this, sailing on this boat in this class. Everyone comes to the boat in the morning with a smile on their face.”

“We are still lacking in a bit of upwind speed but are working on it. It is all moving on, we are working here with a retrieval system on the spinnakers like Svea have and that saves some seconds here and there but that is where we are.”

2018 St Barths Bucket, Day 2 Round the Island Race.

1 Svea 2h 26m 17s, 2 Velsheda 2h 26m 34s, 3 Topaz 2h 28m 40s

Overall after three races

1 Svea 3pts 2 Velsheda 7pts 3 Topaz 8pts

 

Silencio: Ketch_Perini Navi_Perini_50.0m  Saint Barth Bucket Race 2014 Race1 Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi

Silencio: Ketch_Perini Navi_Perini_50.0m
Saint Barth Bucket Race 2014 Race1 (Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi)

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This morning, dockside at The Bucket, it sounded rather funny for sailors to be talking about a “Not So Wiggley Course” with such reverence, but when the day was done and a second of three races had entered the 2014 regatta history books, it was quite clear why. Mademoiselle, Elegante and Gazelle classes took on the long version (27.1 nm) of the course, which started on the west side of St. Barths and wound its way around smaller islands and rocks to the north, while the Grande Dames sailed the shorter version (22 nm) in winds that were a few knots less than yesterday’s yet just as feisty. The “not so” in the course description was obviously tongue-in-cheek, as the 38 superyachts -ranging in size from 27.5m/88′ to 66.7m/216′-zigged and zagged more than the usual number of times while crews executed numerous sail changes as well as spinnaker hoists and takedowns, alternately winding their charges up to gain advantage, then dialing them down to safely share close quarters at rounding marks with their magnificently sized competitors.

Saint Barth Bucket 2014  Gustavia Port in Saint Barth Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi — at Saint Barth.

Saint Barth Bucket 2014
Gustavia Port in Saint Barth Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi — at Saint Barth.

Leading in the Elegantes class after finishing third today and combining that with a first from yesterday is the 54 m/180′ Vitters Ketch Marie, whose tactician Tony Rey, in describing his day, was beaming like a little kid who had just gotten away with something bigger than he expected.

“Anybody who says superyacht racing is champagne and cocktails and taking it easy hasn’t been to The Bucket,” he said. “It’s an absolutely spectacular exercise in teamwork to get these things around the track.”

Rey said he was pleased with Marie’s start and the first third of the leg but then encountered the classic situation of gaining so much that suddenly the team was in the mix with way more boats than he was comfortable with. “It was just mildly terrifying, which is a typical feeling in the afterguards at Bucket Regattas,” said Rey, who counts this as his fifth Bucket Regatta aboard Marie. “This means we’re having a good day.”

Adele: Ketch_Vitters_Hoek_54.6m Saint Barth Bucket Race 2014 Race 1 Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi  at Saint Barth.

Adele: Ketch_Vitters_Hoek_54.6m
Saint Barth Bucket Race 2014 Race 1 Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi at Saint Barth.

Marie’s crew had a few missteps with its maneuvers (including “breaking a spinnaker and putting it in the water”), but others in the class did, as well, and six boats were abreast coming around Roche Table.

“It was absolutely spectacular; there were 40 meters on each side,” Rey said, alluding to the International Superyacht Rule that requires boats to leave 40 meters in all directions between themselves and their competitors. “I didn’t need sun screen because there was shade from all the sails.”

 

Seahawk: Ketch_Perini Navi_Holland_58.6m  Saint Barth Bucket Race 2014Race1 Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi  at Saint Barth.

Seahawk: Ketch_Perini Navi_Holland_58.6m
Saint Barth Bucket Race 2014 Race1 Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi at Saint Barth.

Seahawk, in Grande Dames class, hit the rocks off Roche Table but was able to clear itself and sail to fifth, nevertheless, claiming the top spot on the leaderboard for a second day.

When Clan VIII briefly lost its steering at the same spot, it infringed on the rights of Zenji, causing Zenji to miss a turning mark, but, as is the case in most such Bucket instances, the Clan crew gracefully accepted its penalty and no doubt plans to supply some drinks to the Zenji crew at the Bucket Bash later this evening.

“This was the kind of day that taxes bow and mast teams first because of the physical hoists and drops,” said Jonathan Kline, the safety officer aboard Clan VIII, “then safety officers and tacticians second because of the close quarters of the ‘wiggly’ course, with the fleets converging and crossing.”

Silencio: Ketch_Perini Navi_Perini_50.0m  Saint Barth Bucket Race 2014 Race1 Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi

Silencio: Ketch_Perini Navi_Perini_50.0m
Saint Barth Bucket Race 2014 Race1 Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi

Cape Arrow won the Gazelle class today with less than six minutes separating her from second-place finisher Nilaya, but the two are inverted on the overall scoreboard for Nilaya’s advantage going into tomorrow’s final race.

 

Moonbird has the most consistent finishes (2-2) in Mademoiselle class to lead overall, with Bequia having fallen to second from first yesterday.

New to the 2014 Bucket –  The Golden Pineapple Award, Sponsored by Hotel St Barth Isle de France. The Bucket Directors have added this award to the 2014 edition of the St Barths Bucket to reward an essential element of the event, who will WIN THE PARTY?For more information, and the full list of entries, visitbucketregattas.com/stbarths/Racing concludes on Sunday March 30.Live race tracking by TracTrac enhances the Bucket experience for friends, families and fans of the Bucket. Access that link atbucketregattas.com/stbarths/dailyupdate

Whitehawk: Ketch_Neilson_King_28.0m  Saint Barth Bucket Race 2014 Race1 Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi — at Saint Barth.

Whitehawk: Ketch_Neilson_King_28.0m
Saint Barth Bucket Race 2014 Race1 Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi at Saint Barth.

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 The Bucket Directors are pleased to announce The Golden Pineapple Award. Since the very beginning, the Bucket Regattas have been focused on great sailing competition, seamanship, sportsmanship, a large dose of creative left-field fun and most of all, hospitality and sharing the joy of this magnificent sport among the fleet.This year our good friends aboard Yacht AXIA; the yacht that has shown up at past events as everything from fully clad Spartans in uniform, to the complete line-up of Greek Gods including Poseidon, Thor, a thunderbolt and live goat, pirates, spreader dancing sea horses and all manner of creative fun and frolic, have raised the bar once again. This year it seems that 007 will be lurking in the shadows of Gustavia and, who knows what havoc that may wreak!! Be forewarned, AXIA is locked and loaded to put yet another full spin on the Party concept! As you will see from the attached invitations to Friday’s “Yacht Hop”, they’re not going half-way!!Without a doubt, the challenge is on for quite simply, the best hospitality for the St. Barths Bucket Yacht Hop on Friday, 28 March. Aboard many yachts in the past the parties have been theme based on the full spectrum of fun but the simple question to be resolved is this: Who can throw the best party?? The Bucket Directors are somewhat abashed to admit that in many years of managing this event, we’ve failed to reward the most essential element of the Bucket. The last line in our sailing instructions says it clearly. . . WIN THE PARTY!!! Consider that problem solved. Since the very beginning, the Bucket Regattas have been fully focused on sharing the boundless fun of this magnificent sport, with hospitality among the fleet a core value. Hence, the Pineapple Logo, the symbol of hospitality. Therefore, this year in St. Barths, the yacht that puts forward the best “Open Boat” party spirit will be the recipient of the GOLDEN PINEAPPLE AWARD! Given the fact that we are a little short on time to grow a golden pineapple. . . Let’s say that the winner of this award will be “wined and dined” with eight guests at the Bucket’s expense, at the finest restaurant in St. Barthelemy. The judging in Bucket Tradition, will be ad-hoc but fair. Do note that as usual, the Open Boat Party is limited to race participants wearing event wristbands. Invitees are absolutely at the Owner’s discretion, as directed by those tending the boarding gate.

.New Launches to Compete 

The fleet will include a number of the latest launches from the world’s premier superyacht builders.Two recently launched Perini Navi yachts designed by Ron Holland will join the fleet: the newly designed 40m Sloop, STATE OF GRACE and a new 60m Ketch. SEAHAWK will be easily distinguished not only by her magnificent profile, but also by her crimson Aramid standing rigging by Future Fibers, supporting her towering spars.Making their Bucket debut are competing 2012 launches from the Royal Huisman Shipyard. The classic Spirit of Tradition 38m sloop, PUMULA and the 49m Ketch KAMAXITHA are both Dykstra Naval Architects designs.INOUI, the brilliant green 36m carbon fiber sloop by Vitters Shipyard will pace the fleet around the various courses. Also from Vitters, the 46m Sloop GANESHA will join us for her racing debut.These six new launches will join their thirty two competitors, most of which have sailed in numerous Bucket Regattas, to comprise yet another Bucket superyacht fleet of historic proportions.

Schedule Updates  Registration will open at 0900 on 27 March, with a “Rules Review” seminar beginning concurrently. After a day of practice sailing, learning and taming the ropes (lines), the Skippers Meeting, Welcome Party and Owner’s reception will follow.After Friday’s racing, at 1700 the Bucket will host a presentation by the Environmental Agency of St Barths and the NGO Megaptera, to educate the community on a concurrent scientific project, tagging and tracking whale migrations. The symposium will be followed by the Fleet Open House, a traditional highlight of all Bucket events.Saturday night will host the annual Bucket Bash on the Quay in Gustavia. With a tropical theme, there will be dining, dancing and music by the very popular Soley into the night!This year for the Sunday evening awards, the Government of St Barths has extended an invitation for the Awards Ceremony to be held on the grounds of the Hôtel de la Collectivité, the Government offices across the harbor from the Capitainerie. We have gratefully accepted the invitation and look forward to sharing Bucket Hospitality with the entire racing fleet and our friends in St Barths.

Racing and Awards  In the Bucket Tradition, racing will be pursuit style with the slowest rated yachts starting first and finishes determined by the order of finish. The fleet is divided into four classesLes Grandes Dames, Les Mademoiselles, Les Elegantesand Les Gazelles des Mers and we will continue the successful focus on competition within the classes. All yachts share the same starting and finishing line and sail the assigned course for their specific class. The starting times are structured, such that the classes finish at different times – in the interest of safety, the gap between class finishes will likely be approximately 10 minutes as it was last year.Live Race Tracking is an exciting addition to the race coverage. Details on how to connect and view the races will be provided in our next update and will be posted on the web site.Daily awards will be presented to the top finishers in each class. Handcrafted, limited edition Chelsea Clocks will be awarded to the four class winners, with second and third place in each class also receiving elegant trophies. The overall winner will be recognized as well. The yacht’s name will be added to the perpetual St Barths Bucket trophy and they will receive a beautiful crystal Bucket keepsake trophy.As usual, we will pay particular attention to the traditional Bucket discretionary awards for meritorious acts and the occasional eyebrow raising behavior that perpetuates the “je ne sais quoi” spirit of the event. These include the Wolter Huisman “Spirit of the Bucket Award”, the Vitters Seamanship and Sportsmanship Trophy, the Holland Jachtbouw Cool Crew Award and the coveted Skulduggery Cravat, for the yacht or crew that demonstrates the best and most fun, ‘left field non-adult behavior”.

St. Barths Charity Donation  Each year, the Bucket Regatta designates a portion of the entry fees for donation to a meaningful non-profit program in St Barths. This year the St Joseph School and their grounds improvement project will be the recipient of our donation.One of the oldest educational institutions on the island, The St Joseph School is a private Catholic institution that welcomes more than 200 students ages 3-11, from kindergarten through primary school. The school is in need of funds to improve the schoolyard/playground, where the clay coated sand is a health risk to the children and must be upgraded.The 2014 St Barths Bucket is pleased to be able to help the St Joseph School and allow the children to continue to learn and grow in a healthy environment.We are grateful to be joined by several new supporting sponsors. They will help us to continue the Bucket tradition that celebrates the superyacht industry and recognizes the yachts and their owners as they perpetuate this marvelous sport.Skuld Yacht brings a major marine underwriting firm to the superyacht arena with tremendous capabilities for innovation and tailoring coverage to our owner’s specific needs.Tradewind Aviation has also joined the Bucket fleet with generous support, while providing by far a most efficient way to get to our favorite Caribbean destination.

RACING CLASSES AND  ENTRIES


  
LES GAZELLES DES MERS  (8) HDCP   Max   SA/DP SA/DP
Yacht Rig Builder Designer (med) LOA (m) Draft (m) Displ (mt) DLR Up Down
Hetairos Ketch Baltic Dykstra NA 1.718 66.7 9.0 245 52.1 42.3 80.9
Visione Sloop Baltic Reichel Pugh 1.649 44.9 6.7 125 59.4 39.2 77.7
Saudade Sloop Wally Tripp 1.552 45.0 6.6 174 75.7 33.3 65.2
Kamaxitha Ketch Royal Huisman Dykstra NA 1.527 55.0 6.8 245 91.0 36.7 60.0
Inoui Sloop Vitters Briand 1.467 33.0 5.4 85 90.0 29.2 64.2
Nilaya Sloop Reichel Pugh Baltic 1.462 34.1 5.5 87 79.7 31.9 64.8
Rainbow Sloop Holland Jachtbouw Dykstra NA 1.388 40.0 5.0 237.1 29.8 46.4
Cape Arrow Sloop Souther Wind Farr-Nauta 1.235 30.0 6.7 64.8 92.4 28.5 48.8
  
LES ELEGANTES DES MERS (10) HDCP   Max   SA/DP SA/DP
Yacht Rig Builder Designer (med) LOA (m) Draft (m) Displ (mt) DLR Up Down
Ganesha Sloop Vitters Dubois 1.472 45.9 6.6 252 99.6 26.7 55.7
Ohana Sloop Fitzroy Dubois 1.360 49.7 5.5 361 110.6 23.3 45.1
Lady B Sloop Vitters Dubois 1.336 44.7 6.1 266 104.0 23.8 51.8
Varsovie Sloop Swan Frers 1.264 30.5 4.1 86 117.8 26.8 50.5
Unfurled Sloop Royal Huisman Frers 1.256 34.1 5.8 135 137.4 23.6 46.9
Marie Ketch Vitters Hoek 1.240 54.6 4.8 315 133.9 27.5 51.2
Hyperion Sloop Royal Huisman Frers 1.233 47.5 4.8 337 129.6 21.7 45.4
Twizzle Ketch Royal Huisman Dubois 1.202 57.5 10.9 562 123.5 26.2 39.0
Adele Ketch Vitters Hoek 1.176 54.6 4.8 340 133.0 25.7 45.8
Adela Schooner Pendennis Rest. Dykstra NA 1.138 54.9 5.0 285 150.2 25.9 41.8
  
LES MADEMOISELLES DES MERS (11) HDCP   Max   SA/DP SA/DP
Yacht Rig Builder Designer (med) LOA (m) Draft (m) Displ (mt) DLR Up Down
Pumula Sloop Royal Huisman Dykstra NA 1.259 37.4 5.0 128 157.7 17.3 29.9
Sarafin Sloop Oyster Marine Dubois 1.165 30.8 3.9 120 141.7 19.0 39.4
Moonbird Sloop Fitzroy Dubois 1.160 37.1 4.1 179 141.8 24.0 37.1
Lush Sloop Oyster Marine Humphreys 1.160 27.5 3.5 77.7 148.2 21.2 34.0
Axia Ketch Palmer Johnson S&S 1.143 37.6 3.7 168 155.4 21.2 34.1
Whitehawk Ketch Neilson King 1.057 28.0 4.5 77 156.8 23.8 40.4
Marama Ketch N2A Preslec 1.029 30.9 3.5 70 100.2 25.2 25.2
Bequia Yawl Brooklin BY Stephens 1.021 27.5 2.8 67 228.7 21.0 43.2
Genevieve Sloop Alloy Dubois 0.978 36.9 3.4 190 157.7 17.3 29.8
Blue Too Ketch Alloy Holland 0.977 33.8 3.5 143 196.3 21.6 30.9
Wavelength Sloop Pendennis Holland 0.938 27.4 3.3 81 222.5 19.2 32.4
LES GRANDES DAMES DES MERS (9) HDCP   Max   SA/DP SA/DP
Yacht Rig Builder Designer (med) LOA (m) Draft (m) Displ (mt) DLR Up Down
State of Grace Sloop Perini Navi Holland 1.130 40.0 9.0 233 160.2 24.5 34.9
Seahawk Ketch Perini Navi Holland 1.096 58.6 12.3 551 118.6 17.9 31.1
Clan VIII Sloop Perini Navi Holland 0.992 45.1 4.0 362 189.8 18.8 31.2
Meteor Schooner Royal Huisman Dykstra NA 0.965 51.6 4.3 315 176.3 24.7 36.3
Parsifal III Ketch Perini Navi Holland 0.917 54.0 4.5 469 141.9 22.8 35.4
Altair Sloop Derecktor S&S 0.914 29.2 2.7 112 204.2 15.6 25.6
Zenji Ketch Perini Navi Holland 0.910 56.0 3.9 530 137.5 20.5 27.6
Silencio Ketch Perini Navi Perini 0.882 50.0 3.2 422 183.7 16.6 22.4
Andromeda la Dea Ketch Perini Navi Perini 0.868 46.5 3.4 391 189.2 14.2 23.2

 

 

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