St Barths Bucket (Photo © JCLASS/Carlo Borlenghi/ Studio Borlenghi )

St Barths Bucket (Photo © JCLASS/Carlo Borlenghi/ Studio Borlenghi )

As this beautiful island is still getting back to normal, the excitement of the Bucket is the same as ever. St Barths is a close-knit community that has been working non-stop to be ready for us, and as the sailors and guests arrive, we realize we are part of this special family. Everyone asks in earnest how their island friends are, how their homes survived.

It’s been a long road with some extra bumps in it for sure. Last week a “Surge” with a capital S closed the Port of Gustavia, prohibited ferry service and cargo drop-offs, and caused a paralyzing island-wide phone and internet outage. Port Director Ernest Brin said, “The surge was 3.5 metres at 17 and 19 seconds,” he said, “with the water so high it was hitting our office windows!” Brin is a hands-on kind of guy and doesn’t simply direct Port operations from his place on high; he’s often there to catch a dock line or otherwise lend a personal hand to visiting Buckateers. He even brings flowers every year to the “Bucket girls” who run registration.

Photo © 2018 Ed GudenasThe swell also effected J Class Svea. Their race sails and equipment missed getting unloaded on schedule last week when the container ship that was carrying the goods was forced to hold up offshore because of the Surge. Svea warriors tracked it down and made a passage with their J Class yacht to St. Martin on Tuesday to execute an interception. The team unloaded their containers themselves, taking hours to pile high Svea’s deck. The process, in reverse, repeated itself at the docks of the Capitainerie on Wednesday. It was not ideal and didn’t allow for any practice days. Svea and many others were able to resolve the situation. And, Svea won Thursday’s J Class race. 

Photo © 2018 Ed GudenasNorth Sails also overcame challenges.  On Wednesday, James Downing and Macia Alleminy from the North Sails Superyacht loft in Mallorca, were prepping Wisp’sspinnaker for repair in their mobile Bucket loft across the harbor and waiting for sewing machines – due to be delivered three weeks ago – to show up. “We’ve got back-up from the local loft, but it’s very small,” said Downing who thought perhaps his ship might have finally come in at the same time as Svea’s.

Owners, sponsors and other guests enjoyed a strikingly lovely evening Thursday at a private home on the west side of the island. For the 300 or more attending, the chef from Maya’s Restaurant created delectable appetizers while champagne flowed from bottles kept in illuminated bowls. The outer and inner harbor were similarly aglow with lights from the 26 Superyacht chariots that, by day, await those who are fortunate enough to be participating in the Bucket racing and other activities here this week.

Superyacht Cup Palma 2015 Fleet (Photo  ©www.clairematches.com)

Superyacht Cup Palma 2015 Fleet (Photo ©www.clairematches.com)

Last night’s disco-themed dock party proved epic with the entire crew of the mighty Marie wearing orange wigs, pink sunglasses, glitter, gold and green satin suits; these clear winners went all out and so, not surprisingly, took the best-dressed-in-disco prize: VIP tickets to Pacha‘s after party and a bottle of bubbly to boot. Also team Tulip, colorfully kitted out in, well, ‘Tulips’, scored tickets, as well as own it on the dance floor for most of the night; think slick break-dance moves and a spirited ‘polonaise’. DJ Eazy Michael kept those feet on the dance floor which was followed by Bilonda’s soulful tunes. All in all last night’s fun was a perfect ending to a great day out on the water..

This morning saw the SYC race village bustling with the owners, sailors, friends and guests of the 21 spectacular superyachts charged to get the second day of sailing underway. And while some of the world’s most talented sailors were ardently discussing today’s tactics, the scene was set for today’s second day of racing.

Today’s menu served up a blazing sun, cloudless blue sky and the sea breeze getting it’s foot in the door a little earlier than yesterday. While on our first race day the breeze actually built more than expected, becoming moderate to fresh for much of the afternoon, today was predicted to be even beefier with 12-14 knots around midday and 14-18 in the afternoon.
The fleet headed out at 11 to make their way to the start line and racing got underway at 13.00. It was yesterday’s Class C winner Clan VIII who got off the start line first. The 45m Perini got off to a cracking start but unfortunately at 14.00, as the yachts were on their first run to Bahia 2,  the race got abandoned and the fleet had to return to the start line. Racing commenced again at 14.50 with the race committee opting for a shorter 18.7nm course. This time it was the ferociously green hulled,Vitters built Inouï and Nautor’s Highland Breeze who boasted best starts.

The first upwind Sech mark saw first timer, the 25m Maegan, round ahead of the fleet, pursued closely by new-boat-on-the-block Guardian Angel and the 26m Tulip. Maegan flew at full bore towards Bahia 2 but was chased hard by Kiboko Dos who managed to hunt her down and jibe around the mark first.
In the mean time in Class C both Highland Breeze and Clan VIII were not having a good day at the office. Highland Breeze stayed close to the shore which made her lose her 7th position and Clan VIII tacked later than her competitors who then started to reel her in one by one. The 28m Southern Wind Kiboko Dos however got seriously into gear and held her front running position rounding the fourth Illetas mark first, after which she gunned it towards the finish line crossing 3.27 minutes ahead of speed machine Open Season and 4.16 minutes before the stylish Swan 90 Odin.”For tomorrow we would like to continue doing a good job, in fact we did a good job yesterday. I think that we have to keep pushing and try our best. The team works together really well and we are very happy” commented a beaming Raimon Pascó, captain on board Kiboko Dos.

Today’s Class B winner, the 28m Southern Wind Kiboko Dos. © www.clairematches.com

Possibly the many sailors with local knowledge on board were the secret behind Kiboko Dos’ success today as she pulled out her impressive class win in Class B.

In Class A the Vitters built classic ketch Marie showed again she was on top form by winning her second bullet while newbie boat Maegan’s potent performance secured the team with a victory in Class C. On the new ORCsy rule Maegan’s navigator and CEO of Oyster David Tydeman said: ” The new superyacht rule is working. Oyster’s built 35 boats over 80 feet and with the previous handicap system it wasn’t worth coming to these events but it is now and we’re having a great time and I’m going to be encouraging Oysters to come regularly”. Regatta regular P2 took second after Marie. “The owner was super happy, he said we couldn’t have gotten any more out of the boat and the crew couldn’t have done a better job, so we felt we left nothing on the table and the results after day 2 sort of show that” smiled Captain Jonathan Kline.

A happy crew on board Kiboko Dos today. ©www.clairematches.com

As crew make a post-debrief lay line for the Regatta Bar sponsored by North Sails, the owners and their guests head for the unique St. Regis Mardavall. A stunning resort framed by the Tramuntana mountains, the luxurious marina of Puerto Portals and the sparkling blue Mediterranean Sea. With one group on the southwest coast of the island and the other in Superyacht Cup central we’re certain in both places all talk will feature the final day of sailing tomorrow, as everything will come down to the crunch in Saturday’s ultimate showdown.

Connect with us through Twitter #SYC15 and Facebook (The Superyacht Cup) for real time updates of all the action on and off the race course and/or follow the race live via Trac Trac.

2015 Entry List

Boat Size Design Shipyard
Blue Too 34m Ron Holland Alloy Yachts
Clan VIII 45m Ron Holland Perini Navi
Gaia 30.6m Spirit Yachts Spirit Yachts
Ganesha 46m Dubois Naval Architects Vitters Shipyard
Guardian Angel 26m Humphreys Yacht Design Oyster Yachts
Heartbeat 24m Hoek Yacht Design Claasen Shipyards
Highland Breeze 34m Frers Yacht Design Nautor Swan
Inoui 33m Briand Yacht Design Vitters Shipyard
Kiboko Dos 28m Reichel/Pugh Southern Wind Shipyard
Maegan 25m Humphreys Yacht Design Oyster Yachts
Maria Cattiva 40m Bruce King Royal Huisman
Marie 55m Hoek Yacht Design Vitters Shipyard
Odin 27.7m Frers Yacht Design Nautor Swan
Open Season 30.4m Judel/Vrolijk Wally Yachts
P2 38m Briand Yacht Design Perini Navi
Perseus ^3 60m Ron Holland Perini Navi
Saudade 45m Tripp Design Wally Yachts
Tilakkhana 24m Wally Yachts Wally Yachts
Tulip 26m Frers Yacht Design K&M Yacht Builders
Visione 45m Reichel/Pugh Baltic Yachts
Win Win 33m Javier Jaudenes Baltic Yachts
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The entries are in for the 2014 edition of the St Barths Bucket Regatta and we have a great fleet heading to the beautiful island of St Barthélemy. Thirty eight of the world’s largest sailing superyachts will gather in Gustavia for three days of great trade wind sailing, wholesome competition, shore side camaraderie and shenanigans St Barths style.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.

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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
Visione Sloop Baltic Reichel Pugh 44.9 6.7 125 59.4 39.2 77.7
Hetairos Ketch Baltic Dykstra NA 66.7 9.0 245 52.1 42.3 80.9
Saudade Sloop Wally Tripp 45.0 6.6 174 75.7 33.3 65.2
Kamaxitha Ketch Royal Huisman Dykstra NA 49.0 6.8 245 91.0 36.7 60.0
Inoui Sloop Vitters Briand 33.0 5.4 85 90.0 29.2 64.2
Nilaya Sloop Reichel Pugh Baltic 34.1 5.5 87 79.7 31.9 64.8
Rainbow Sloop Holland Jachtbouw Dykstra NA 40.0 5.0 237.1 29.8 46.4
Cape Arrow Sloop Souther Wind Farr-Nauta 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 45.9 6.6 252 99.6 26.7 55.7
Ohana Sloop Fitzroy Dubois 49.7 5.5 361 110.6 23.3 45.1
Lady B Sloop Vitters Dubois 44.7 6.1 266 104.0 23.8 51.8
Varsovie Sloop Swan Frers 30.5 4.1 86 117.8 26.8 50.5
Unfurled Sloop Royal Huisman Frers 34.1 5.8 135 137.4 23.6 46.9
Marie Ketch Vitters Hoek 54.6 4.8 315 133.9 27.5 51.2
Hyperion Sloop Royal Huisman Frers 47.5 4.8 337 129.6 21.7 45.4
Twizzle Ketch Royal Huisman Dubois 57.5 10.9 562 123.5 26.2 39.0
Adele Ketch Vitters Hoek 54.6 4.8 340 133.0 25.7 45.8
Adela Schooner Pendennis Rest. Dykstra NA 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
Sarafin Sloop Oyster Marine Dubois 30.8 3.9 120 141.7 19.0 39.4
Axia Ketch Palmer Johnson S&S 37.6 3.7 168 155.4 21.2 34.1
Moonbird Sloop Fitzroy Dubois 37.1 4.1 179 141.8 24.0 37.1
Pumula Sloop Royal Huisman Dykstra NA 37.4 5.0 128 157.7 17.3 29.9
Lush Sloop Oyster Marine Humphreys 27.5 3.5 77.7 148.2 21.2 34.0
Whitehawk Ketch Neilson King 28.0 4.5 77 156.8 23.8 40.4
Marama Ketch N2A Preslec 30.9 3.5 70 100.2 25.2 25.2
Bequia Yawl Brooklin BY Stephens 27.5 2.8 67 228.7 21.0 43.2
Wavelength Sloop Pendennis Holland 27.4 3.3 81 222.5 19.2 32.4
Genevieve Sloop Alloy Dubois 36.9 3.4 190 157.7 17.3 29.8
Blue Too Ketch Alloy Holland 33.8 3.5 143 196.3 21.6 30.9
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
Seahawk Ketch Perini Navi Holland 58.6 12.3 551 118.6 17.9 31.1
Clan VIII Sloop Perini Navi Holland 45.1 4.0 362 189.8 18.8 8.5
Zenji Ketch Perini Navi Holland 56.0 3.9 530 137.5 20.5 27.6
State of Grace Sloop Perini Navi Holland 40.0 9.0 233 160.2 24.5 34.9
Meteor Schooner Royal Huisman Dykstra NA 51.6 4.3 315 176.3 24.7 36.3
Parsifal III Ketch Perini Navi Holland 54.0 4.5 469 141.9 22.8 35.4
Silencio Ketch Perini Navi Perini 50.0 3.2 422 183.7 16.6 22.4
Altair Sloop Derecktor S&S 29.2 2.7 112 204.2 15.6 25.6
Andromeda la Dea Ketch Perini Navi Perini 46.5 3.4 391 189.2 14.2 23.2

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 Elegantes and 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.

Welcome, and Thank You, New Bucket Sponsors!

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.

Thank you to all Bucket Sponsors

It is with great pleasure and thanks that we acknowledge all of our Bucket sponsors.

Major sponsors are Alloy Yachts, Holland Jachtbouw, Perini Navi, Royal Huisman and Vitters Shipyard.

Returning supporting sponsors are Burgess, Camper & Nicholson, Doehle Yachts, Doyle, Future Fibres, Newport Shipyard, North Sails, Pantaenius, Pendennis, Rybovich, the Superyacht Report and ZIS Insurance.

Taittinger Champagne and Barbeyrolles Rose are official suppliers.

For More information: BucketRegattas.com
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Adela (Photo by Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi)

 

A “Wrong Way Around” race wrapped up sailing today at the four-day St. Barths Bucket Regatta, and it was more colorful and full of goodies than a child’s Easter basket. Thirty six superyachts in four classes (Grandes Dames, Mademoiselles, Gazelles and J Boats) circumnavigated the French West Indies island of St. Barths, giving Bucket fans on shore and at sea an awe-inspiring view of some of the largest and most beautiful and technologically advanced yachts sailing in the world today.

 

The race course, which covered 21 to 26.4 nautical miles (depending on the class), reversed Friday’s “Around the Island” journey and put boat handling skills to the test right off the bat with a downwind start. All but the J Boat class adhered to a “pursuit-style” racing format, requiring each yacht to time its run to the gun for a separate pre-determined start time and hoist a spinnaker as soon as possible after crossing the starting line — the theory being that if all crews in each class sailed equally well, aboard their varied yachts of different speeds, they would meet at the finish line all together.

 

The theory worked especially well today in the 18-20 knot breezes, with yachts barreling down on the finish line, drawn again by their giant spinnakers, within minutes – sometimes seconds — of each other.

 

Adela Crew

In the Mademoiselles class, the 55 meter schooner Adela, built by Pendennis and helmed by Dennis Conner, maintained her regatta-long position at the top of the scoreboard with a second-place finish today. Adela was presented with the St. Barth’s Bucket trophy as the regatta’s overall winner. The 45 meter Dubois designed Salperton IV, skippered by Shirley Robertson with Cameron Appleton in the afterguard, won today’s race to claim second overall, while another Dubois design, the 50 meter Zefira, took third overall.

 

In the Grandes Dames class, the 48-meter Georgia, built by Alloy Yachts, claimed overall victory by crossing the finish line first in her class today. Georgia’s Captain Brent Daw said that his yacht, conceived as the ultimate family world cruiser, has seen many ocean miles since she splashed in 2000, thus she is going into the yard for a refit after the Bucket.

 

 

“We sailed steady and cautious like the hare and the turtle, and we were the steady turtle,” said Daw, who came aboard as skipper of the yacht only three months ago. He added that the crew had to sail intuitively, since the majority of them are new to the boat. “The team is more of an organic group, a mix, nationally, of South Africans and Kiwis,” he said explaining that Chris Dickson, of America’s Cup fame, is helming. “The owner lives on board and loves a great day on the water. He is thrilled!”

Claiming second place overall in this class, with a fourth today, was the 54 meter Perini Navi Parsifal III, while the 38 meter Axia, which was presented with both the All Star Crew Award and the Wolter Huisman Memorial Spirit of the Bucket Trophy at this regatta, finished third overall after posting a third for today. The winner of the Vitters Shipyard Seamanship Trophy was also from this class: the Perini Navi Zenji.

 

Perini Navi P2 (Photo by Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi)

One of the biggest stories on the water today was in the Gazelles class, where the 45 meter Visione, the 38 meter Perini Navi P2, and the 30 meter Cape Arrow were all tied with six points going into today’s race. Trailing only one point behind was the Royal Huisman-built Unfurled, which won today’s race to upset the apple cart and claim overall victory in the class. P2, which took home the Perini Navi Cup, took second today to claim equal points (8) with Unfurled but conceded for a second-place finish overall, after tie-breaking rules were applied. Visione and Cape Arrow finished third and fourth overall, respectively.

 

LORO PIANA Cape Arrow (Photo by Carlo Borlenghi /Studio Borlenghi)

This was a historic event for the J Class, as it was the first time five of them have graced the same starting line since 1937. Hanuman, built by Royal Huisman, proved unbeatable throughout the three days, winning handily over the line and on corrected time in the first two of three races held here. Today, Lionheart edged out Hanuman by just two seconds at the line, but Hanuman still prevailed on corrected time to leave Lionheart in second overall. Velsheda, Ranger and the Holland Jachtbouw built Rainbow followed in third through fifth places, respectively.

 

Winning the King’s 100 Guinea Cup for Thursday’s “extra day” race for J Boats at the Bucket was Hanuman. The top Corinthian J with an amateur owner/helmsman to win the Corinthian King’s Cup was Lionheart.

 

“The owner was thrilled,” said Bouwwe Bekking, who called tactics on Lionheart. “This was his fourth regatta ever, and he has done remarkably well. For today’s race, it was neck-and-neck with Hanuman after 26 miles. We knew that with them that close to us they would win, but we had to get our nose out there to win line honors. We loved that we got the gun.”

 

Bekking said that having the J Boats sailing fleet-style in their own group in the same regatta as the superyachts, which were sailing pursuit-style, worked perfectly. “It was great that we had our own start procession, it wouldn’t have worked any other way. To maneuver these boats is way harder, so the emphasis on safety is good. It was really incredible, and we owe a great thanks to the Bucket Committee and the J Class organization.”

 

Every year the Bucket Organization devotes a portion of its entry fees for a worthy cause in St. Barths. This year, a donation in the amount of 18,000 euros was made to the St. Barths Yacht Club Youth Sailing Program.

 

Next year’s event is scheduled for 27 – 30, March 2014

 

Results, Photos, Barby’s Blog and more http://www.bucketregattas.com

 Media Pro International’s Barby MacGowan is reporting daily from St. Barths.

Complete results, photos, Barby’s recaps and more: bucketregattas.com/stbarths/

Special Awards 

OVERALL WINNER of the 2013 ST BARTHS BUCKET          ADELA

 

 

SKULLDUGGERY CRAVAT WILD HORSES

ALLOY YACHTS TROPHY GEORGIA

ALL STAR CREW AWARD presented by Holland Jachtbouw AXIA

WOLTER HUISMAN MEMORIAL SPIRIT OF THE BUCKET TROPHY AXIA

PERINI NAVI CUP    P2

VITTER’S SHIPYARD SEAMANSHIP TROPHY     ZENJI

 

Athos (Photo by Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi)

 

“Main-mast staysail up. Do not unfurl. Raise your hands if you hear me.” Captain Tony Brookes calmly called his instructions into a hand-held from one of his dual on-deck navigation stations near the aft quarter of Athos, the 62 meter Hoek-designed Holland Jachtbouw that he commands. His crew with headsets faithfully obeyed, shooting their hands in the air before quickly jumping into action. So went the day that started with pouring rain and segued into one of the windiest here yet, taking the wind gauge to 28 knots and Athos to speeds as high as 15.8.

 

The owner and his rep Gary Veenman from Holland alternated at the helm, giving each other much-needed breaks from the giant wheel that played tug of war with them. Three trimmers scooted among the 40-some-odd crew, working the joy sticks on their remote control “God boxes” that controlled the hydraulic operations of winches for hoisting and dropping sails as well as sheeting them in and letting them out. For someone who normally sails 40-footers, it surely would have been something strange and wonderful to behold, but for those who regularly sail in this rarified world of superyachts it was just another approach to racing one of the most magnificent sailing yachts on the oceans today.

Athos’s closest competitor today in the Mademoiselles class at the annual St. Barths Bucket was the 55 metre twin-masted Adela, the steel hulled Dykstra designed Pendennis build that represents a historically significant salvage and rebuild of the 1903 original. Adela had won this 10-boat class yesterday, the first day of racing, and won again today, crossing the finish line first, after the traditional pursuit start had the smallest and slowest boats starting first and the larger and faster boats starting at specific time intervals afterward to try and catch up. Athos, which had finished seventh yesterday, was quite pleased with a second-place finish after being fifth in the pursuit-start lineup. That moved them to fifth overall behind Zefira, Salperton, and Lady B.

 

“No one caught us from behind and we passed two others, so we must be doing something right,” said Athos’s Brookes. “It was a hard-work race today. Windy and wet, and everyone’s uncomfortable but they still have to concentrate on the job they are doing. We had some problems (with the spinnaker hoist) but we dealt with them. It was more like the North Sea instead of the Caribbean there for a while.”

 

Adela (Photo by Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi)

Aboard Adela, Kim “Shags” Morten conceded that the Adela team can sail well in any direction and in any conditions because they have the choice of sails to make the right calls in any given situation. “Our biggest competition is Athos; we think it comes down to the crew performance,” said Morten, adding that he has competed in every Bucket to date, the last three on Adela. “We now have top-of-the-line sails, a carbon fiber mast and a team that has sailed together in the last three superyacht regattas.”

 

In Grand Dames class, Georgia rose to the top of the scoreboard after taking today’s race. Blue Too, which was leading going into today, retired after a crew was injured and fell to seventh with a finish score today of 13.

 

Cape Arrow in the 2013 St. Barths Bucket (Photo by Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borllenghi)

In the Gazelle class, Visione maintained its first position overall with a fifth-place finish today. However, they are tied on point score (6) with both P2 and Cape Arrow, with Unfurled only one point behind.

 

Hanuman claimed another bullet, its third, in the J Boat class today. When asked what was different about today, tactician Kevin Burnham joked, “Nothing, we won the race!” But in all honesty, the win didn’t come easy. “The biggest challenge in pushing that type of machine around the race course (in today’s conditions) is that stuff gets shocked-waved,” said Burnham. “We blew up a kite — it just exploded into a million pieces.”

 

The crews on all 36 Bucket boats are glad to be back on terra firma for tonight’s pirate-themed “Bucket Bash.” The party should do its part to prepare them for tomorrow’s Wrong-Way Around (the island) Course.

Results as of Saturday

PRELIMINARY PURSUIT as of 30 March, 2013 – UPDATED MARCH 31 0800
Race 2: Not So Wiggley Course

Saturday     30-Mar-13             PRELIMINARY

Start Sequence: B
Results: Race 2                     Results: Cumulative

GRAND DAMES     (Long Course 27.2 nm)
Race 2     FINISH     TIME                     Race 1     Race 2     Race 3     Total
Points     TIME     Delta                     Points     Points     Points     Points     Rank
GEORGIA                      1     2:36:58 PM     0:00:00         GEORGIA           3     1           4     1
PARSIFAL III*           2     2:39:25 PM     0:02:27         PARSIFAL III           4     2         6     2
AXIA                               3     2:46:15 PM     0:09:17         PANTHALASSA           2     8         10     3
ZENJI                            4     2:48:42 PM     0:11:44         AXIA               7     3         10     4
ANDROMEDA LA DEA     5     2:51:48 PM     0:14:50         ZENJI               8     4         12     5
PANTHALASSA* **     8     2:54:09 PM     0:17:11         SALUTE           6     7         13     6
SALUTE           7     3:13:48 PM     0:36:50         BLUE TOO           1     13         14     7
LUNA               8     3:15:05 PM     0:38:07         ANDROMEDA LA DEA     9     5         14     8
ROSEHEARTY           9     3:15:51 PM     0:38:53         SILENCIO           5     13         18     9
MALTESE FALCON     10     3:22:00 PM     0:45:02         LUNA               10     8         18     10
BLUE TOO           13     DNF     N/A         MALTESE FALCON     11     10         21     11
SILENCIO           13     DNF     N/A         ROSEHEARTY           13     9           22     12

MADEMOISELLES     (Long Course 27.2 nm)
Race 2     FINISH     TIME                       Race 1     Race 2     Race 3     Total
Points     TIME     Delta                     Points     Points     Points     Points     Rank
ADELA                 1     2:46:45 PM     0:00:00         ADELA                 1     1           2     1
ATHOS               2     2:51:57 PM     0:05:12         ZEFIRA               4     3         7     2
ZEFIRA               3     2:54:32 PM     0:07:47         SALPERTON           2     6         8     3
KOO               4     2:56:12 PM     0:09:27         LADY B               3     5         8     4
LADY B               5     2:57:36 PM     0:10:51         ATHOS               7     2         9     5
SALPERTON           6     3:04:39 PM     0:17:54         KOO               10     4         14     6
WILD HORSES           7     3:08:22 PM     0:21:37         SARAFIN’           6     8         14     7
SARAFIN’           8     3:08:40 PM     0:21:55         PRANA               5     10         15     8
SYMMETRY           9     3:11:55 PM     0:25:10         WILD HORSES           8     7         15     9
PRANA                 10     3:21:03 PM     0:34:18         SYMMETRY           9     9           18     10

GAZELLES         (Long Course 27.2 nm)
Race 2     FINISH     TIME                     Race 1     Race 2     Race 3     Total
Points     TIME     Delta                     Points     Points     Points     Points     Rank
UNFURLED           1     3:03:21 PM     0:00:00         VISIONE           1     5           6     1
REBECCA           2     3:05:24 PM     0:02:03         P2               2     4         6     2
CAPE ARROW           3     3:06:24 PM     0:03:03         CAPE ARROW           3     3         6     3
P2               4     3:07:13 PM     0:03:52         UNFURLED           6     1         7     4
VISIONE           5     3:10:12 PM     0:06:51         REBECCA           8     2         10     5
INDIO               6     3:11:44 PM     0:08:23         INDIO               4     6         10     6
LEOPARD3           7     3:16:27 PM     0:13:06         CHRISCO           5     8         13     7
CHRISCO           8     3:16:42 PM     0:13:21         LEOPARD3           7     7         14     8
BAIURDO VI           10     DNS     N/A         BAIURDO VI           9     10           19     9

* 5 MINUTE PENALTY FOR OVER THE LINE EARLY
** PANTHALASSA TOOK A 20% SCORING PENALTY IN ACCORDANCE WITH SI 18.2

Race 1: Around the Island

Friday     29-Mar-13

Start Sequence: C
Results: Race 1

GRAND DAMES     (Short Course 17.0 nm)
Race 1     FINISH     TIME
Points     TIME     Delta
BLUE TOO           1     2:06:51 PM     0:00:00
PANTHALASSA           2     2:17:46 PM     0:10:55
GEORGIA           3     2:18:20 PM     0:11:29
PARSIFAL III           4     2:22:08 PM     0:15:17
SILENCIO           5     2:22:25 PM     0:15:34
SALUTE           6     2:24:35 PM     0:17:44
AXIA               7     2:24:48 PM     0:17:57
ZENJI               8     2:31:45 PM     0:24:54
ANDROMEDA LA DEA     9     2:33:55 PM     0:27:04
LUNA               10     2:38:20 PM     0:31:29
MALTESE FALCON     11     2:42:43 PM     0:35:52
ROSEHEARTY           13     DNS     N/A

MADEMOISELLES
(Medium Course 20.8 nm)
Race 1     FINISH     TIME
Points     TIME     Delta
ADELA                 1     2:15:18 PM     0:00:00
SALPERTON           2     2:18:07 PM     0:02:49
LADY B               3     2:23:35 PM     0:08:17
ZEFIRA               4     2:27:51 PM     0:12:33
PRANA               5     2:28:10 PM     0:12:52
SARAFIN’           6     2:29:28 PM     0:14:10
ATHOS               7     2:31:01 PM     0:15:43
WILD HORSES           8     2:33:05 PM     0:17:47
SYMMETRY           9     2:35:40 PM     0:20:22
KOO                 10     2:37:35 PM     0:22:17

GAZELLES
(Medium Course 20.8 nm)
Race 1     FINISH     TIME
Points     TIME     Delta
VISIONE           1     2:29:51 PM     0:00:00
P2               2     2:31:55 PM     0:02:04
CAPE ARROW           3     2:32:04 PM     0:02:13
INDIO               4     2:34:02 PM     0:04:11
CHRISCO           5     2:34:29 PM     0:04:38
UNFURLED           6     2:36:47 PM     0:06:56
LEOPARD3           7     2:37:43 PM     0:07:52
REBECCA           8     2:39:32 PM     0:09:41
BAIURDO VI           9     2:41:04 PM     0:11:13

FOLLOW THE J CLASS ON THE WATER: tractrac.com

J Class – PROVISIONAL as of Saturday 30 March
Race 1     Race 2     Race 3     Race 4     Total
Points     Points     Points     Points     Points     Rank
HANUMAN           1     1     1           3     1
LIONHEART     2     2     4           8     2
VELSHEDA     5     3     2           10     3
RANGER     4     5     3         12     4
RAINBOW     3     4     6           13     5

Saturday     30-Mar-13
Results: Race 3             Course Type:     CR
Wind Range:     Heavy
Start Time:     11:00:00 AM     Approx Dist:     29.4 nm

FINISH     ELAPSED     CORRECTED
Rating     TIME     TIME     TIME     Rank
HANUMAN           1.017     2:01:44 PM     3:01:44     3:04:49     1
VELSHEDA     1.013     2:05:22 PM     3:05:22     3:07:47     2
RANGER     1.018     2:04:59 PM     3:04:59     3:08:19     3
LIONHEART     1.021     2:09:03 PM     3:09:03     3:13:01     4
RAINBOW     1.018     8:00:00 PM     9:00:00     DNF     6

Friday         29-Mar-13

Results: Race 2
Course Type:     CR
FINISH     ELAPSED     CORRECTED
Rating     TIME     TIME     TIME
HANUMAN           1.018     1:31:04 PM     2:31:04     2:33:47
LIONHEART     1.020     1:31:48 PM     2:31:48     2:34:50
VELSHEDA     1.014     1:32:50 PM     2:32:50     2:34:58
RAINBOW     1.020     1:34:24 PM     2:34:24     2:37:29
RANGER     1.015     1:35:14 PM     2:35:14     2:37:34

Thursday     28-Mar-13

Results: Race 1
Course Type:     WL
Wind Range:     Light
Start Time:     12:10:00 PM     Approx Dist:     12NM
FINISH     ELAPSED     CORRECTED
Rating     TIME     TIME     TIME
HANUMAN           1.028     2:21:59 PM     2:11:59     2:15:41
LIONHEART     1.029     2:24:42 PM     2:14:42     2:18:36
RAINBOW     1.034     2:28:09 PM     2:18:09     2:22:51
RANGER     1.012     2:31:38 PM     2:21:38     2:23:20
VELSHEDA     1.018     2:31:39 PM     2:21:39     2:24:12y

Rebecca in 2013 St. Barths Bucket Day 3( Photo by Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

 

St. Barths Bucket Regatta 2012 (Photo © 2012 by Tim Wright / www.photoaction.com)

The 2013 St Barths Bucket Regatta action starts on March 28. This annual yachting spectacular will feature the latest in superyacht designs along with true classics. Thirty-five yachts are ready to join the festivities and racing.

Racing begins on Thursday March 28 when five J Class yachts head for the starting line. This will be the first gathering of five or more J’s since 1937!

Three more races are planned, with all yachts racing in four separate classes –Les Mademoiselles des Mers, Les Grandes Dames des Mers, Les Gazelles des Mers, and the J Class.

The largest yacht is the 88m Perini Navi built schooner Maltese Falcon. Eleven of the current entries are 50 meters or larger. Among new boats to the St Barths Bucket is the 31m Dubois Naval Architects designed Sarafin and the 31m Newport Bucket winner Indio.

Newport Bucket Regatta Overall wWnner Indio (Photo by George Bekris)

Newport Bucket Regatta Overall wWnner Indio (Photo by George Bekris)

The around the island courses create spectacular opportunities to view these breathtaking vessels under sail. The racing format has been modified somewhat, with the start times set so that the classes should finish together. This change is designed to make the racing both more competitive and safer.

Now in their 27th year, the Bucket regattas attract the crème de la crème of yacht builders from every sailing nation, with several builders boasting multiple entries. The “Big Five” sailing yacht builders (Perini Navi, Royal Huisman, Holland Jachtbouw, Alloy Yachts and Vitters) have for many years supported the Bucket Regattas, playing a meaningful role in growing the Bucket and helping maintain the non-commercial atmosphere, another significant hallmark of Bucket races.

Parsifal III (Photo by George Bekris / www.georgebekris. com)

One of Executive Director Tim Laughridge’s goals is to ensure that the renowned Spirit of the Bucket is retained while providing participants with great class racing. He’ll be helming Parsifal III and racing to win, but reminds everyone that the overriding theme is to sail safe and win the party!

The four class winners of the 2013 St Barths Bucket will each receive a Ship’s Bell Clock from Chelsea Clock.

St. Barths Bucket Regatta 2012 rounding the island. (Photo © 2012 by Tim Wright / www.photoaction.com)

J Class
Yachts (5) LOA(m) Type Builder Designer
Hanuman 42m sloop Royal Huisman Dykstra Naval Architects
Lionheart 43m sloop Bloemsma/Claasen Jachtbouw Hoek Design
Rainbow 40m sloop Holland Jachtbouw Dykstra Naval Architects
Ranger 41m sloop Danish Yacht Sparkman & Stephens
Velsheda 40m sloop Camper & Nicholson Nicholson
les Gazelles des Mers
Yachts (9) LOA(m) Type Builder Designer
Baiurdo VI 35m sloop Abeking & Rasmussen Gilles Vaton
Cape Arrow 30m sloop Southern Wind Farr – Nauta
Chrisco 31m sloop CNB Luca Brenta
Indio 30m sloop Wally Yachts Frers Naval Architecture
Leopard3 30m sloop McConaghy Farr Yacht Design
P2 38m sloop Perini Navi Philippe Briand
Rebecca 43m ketch Pendennis Frers Naval Architecture
Unfurled 34m sloop Royal Huisman Frers Naval Architecture
Visione 45m sloop Baltic Yachts Reichel/Pugh Yacht Design
les Mademoiselles des Mers
Yachts (10) LOA(m) Type Builder Designer
Adela 55m schooner Pendennis Dykstra Naval Architects
Athos 62m schooner Holland Jachtbouw Hoek Design
Koo (non spin) 43m sloop Vitters Shipyard Dubois Naval Architects
Lady B 45m sloop Vitters Shipyard Dubois Naval Architects
Prana 52m sloop Alloy Yachts Dubois Naval Architects
Salperton IV 45m sloop Fitzroy Yachts Dubois Naval Architects
Sarafin’ 31m sloop Oyster/RMK Marine Dubois Naval Architects
Symmetry 29m sloop Yachting Developments Frers Naval Architecture
Wild Horses 24m sloop Brooklin Boat Yard Joel White
Zefira 50m sloop Fitzroy Yachts Dubois Naval Architects
les Grandes Dames des Mers
Yachts (12) LOA(m) Type Builder Designer
Andromeda La Dea 48m ketch Perini Navi Perini Navi
Axia 38m ketch Palmer Johnson Sparkman & Stephens
Blue Too 34m ketch Alloy Yachts Ron Holland Design
Georgia 48m sloop Alloy Yachts Studio Scanu Sri Butch
Luna 52m sloop Perini Navi Perini Navi
Maltese Falcon 88m schooner Perini Istanbul Dykstra Naval Architects
Panthalassa 56m ketch Perini Navi Ron Holland Design
Parsifal III 54m ketch Perini Navi Ron Holland Design
Rosehearty 56m ketch Perini Navi Ron Holland Design
Salute 56m sloop Perini Navi Ron Holland Design
Silencio  50m ketch Perini Navi Perini Navi
Zenji 56m ketch Perini Navi Ron Holland Des

.

St. Barths Bucket Regatta 2012 (Photo © 2012 by Tim Wright / www.photoaction.com)

This Is Us Crew  at award ceremony  (Photo by Billy Black)

This Is Us Crew at award ceremony (Photo by Billy Black)

By Norma Trease

As The Bard said “parting is such sweet sorrow”, and that is exactly the way everyone feels at the end of another fantastic edition of the Saint Barths Bucket. With every hug, every single-double-triple goodbye kiss, every sincere “I love you” a piece of your heart leaves with each friend and sailing companion who departs for their home ports by plane, ferry – or indeed by yacht. Yet we all know that in this world, we will all meet again, whether in another country, surely another regatta, boat show, wedding, or quay encounter in another port town. ‘Tis the nature of our biz! The upshot is that we carry with us, one and all, amazing memories of another Bucket, bigger and better than ever.

Michael Bradfield, owner of the superb Dubois-designed, Royal Huisman built Twizzle, summed it up as well as I ever could. “What a superb and exciting Bucket Regatta. The sailing was varied and challenging and brilliantly planned. The four categories were spot on and the exciting and tight finishes were a testament to the superb rating by Jim Teeters. Peter Craig as PRO and the team did a superb job of promoting a rich and varied regatta with a strong emphasis on safety and good nature. It was a privilege being able to take part.”

 

With forty seven yachts of this value and calibre, all competing for prizes, glory and bragging rights, racing can sometimes get a little hairy. Yet with the intense professionalism of both permanent and racing crews, once again, Bucket racing in Saint Barths remained safe, and with other than a few protest-enducing close calls, and some gear failure, everything turned out well in the end. However, there were some incidents of the yacht air-kiss variety.

On Day Three of racing, “Round the Island the Other Way”, with the four classes separated into two parallel courses, there were less of the mega-million-dollar-baby pile ups we all gasped at on Day Two. Day Threes’ biggest heart thumping moments happened at the finish line, which went between a marker buoy, and the lovely Burger yacht committee boat, Ingot. Blue Too, who had a great race, coming in 2nd in Class and 3rd place overall, narrowly avoided becoming the filing in a Perini panini. It was an exciting race for Perinis today, as Fidelis, and Parsifal III came across the finish line within inches of each other, and Andromeda also came exceedingly close to the committee boat.

BTW, a sincere “Merci Bucket” must be given to our three graciously loaned committee boats Rena, Krisujen, and Ingot. They are an integral part of Bucket racing, providing excellent hospitality and a great environment for our hard-working Race Committee officers, while also serving as appropriately elegant foils to the superb sailing yachts who pass them twice each day. Thanks very much!

It’s virtually impossible to fairly rate a gigantic fleet of this magnitude and diversity. No one has more data available, or crunches those numbers more assiduously than our ratings guru, Jim Teeters. Yet unfortunately, despite achieving the goal of many excitingly close-to-photo finishes, you can never please everyone in this super knowledgeable and experienced crowd. Amy Laing, who has for many years managed the complexities of the very busy Whisper program, delicately explained their frustrations at the ratings they received this year (which saw them start three from last on Day Three, for instance.) “The racing format needs work!” She further explained, “the size and number of yachts has rendered the objective of an overall winner impossible to fairly determine. The committee should be applauded for running this Bucket Regatta as competitively as it did given the obsolete format. I am sure Peter Craig will solve the format issue and Jim Titters will fairly rate the fleet in the future.” Extremely constructive criticism, and it is obvious that the Bucket racings need to be as varied and flexible as are the entries themselves.

Excellent racing and cruising skipper Dean Maggio, who unfortunately was involved in one of the few protests, looked at it from a historical perspective “this used to be resolved with a case of champagne, but no more! Maybe we could go back to that!” Capt. Johnno Johnson of Antara, always the Bucket host-with-the-most, also shared his frustrations too, “not matter how well we sail- and we’ve had some cracking good sailing here, we simply can’t get ahead of all of these bigger, newer boats. Sure, the owner and guests are having the time of their lives – but we like to at least be in the middle of the fleet.” Antara was this year awarded the Skulduggery Cravat for their always-excellent good humour, and much appreciated hospitality.

The All-Star Crew went to Endeavour ­- who were so much admired as they decorated the courses daily, and also came in top in the J-Class, with a very respectable 23rd overall. The Vitters Seamanship Trophy was given to Race Committee member Don Gunning, who worked night and day to keep this race safe, and enjoyable for everyone.

Lots of awards going around: Perini Navi Barracuda, took home the always coveted Escargot Cup – whose title is self-explanatory. The Alloy Yacht Award for the top performing Alloy Yacht went to Blue Too. In a charming speech, Alice Huisman presented the Wolter Huisman Memorial Award, given to the yacht or person who best exhibits the ‘spirit of the Bucket’ to Capt. Richard Archer of the Swan Virago, well-known for their competitive spirit, and intense emphasis on safety. The Perini Navi Cup, which had a lot of potential winners in this years bumper-crop, was given to Panthalassa, who had an excellent race, coming in 2nd in Les Grandes Dames class, and 4th overall.

 

BRAVO, BRAVI, BRAVE to every one of us all lucky enough to part if this always totally awe-inspiring event – or as Don Tofias, that yacht-loving, and Bucket-loving sailorman says “the 2012 edition of the St. Barths Bucket is now complete, and as always – Yachting was the Winner.”

Blogger Norma Trease, one of the most sincere Bucket fans ever, is  celebrating her own 25th Bucket Regatta – but who’s counting?

St Barths Bucket Photo  (Photo by Claire Matches)

St Barths Bucket Photo (Photo by Claire Matches)

Overall Winners

First

This Is Us

Second

Lady B

Third

Blue Too

Les Gazelles Winners

First

Mari-Cha III

Second

Firefly

Third

P2

Les Grandes Dames Winners

First Parsifal III
Second Panthalassa
Third Axia

Les Elegantes Winners

First

This Is Us

Second

Blue Too

Third

Windcrest

Les Mademoiselles Winners

First

Lady B

Second

Ganesha

Third

Twizzle

J Class

Endeavour

Skullduggery Award

Antara

Escargot Cup

Barracuda

Alloy Cup

Blue Too

All Star Crew Award

Endeavour

Wolter Huisman Memorial Spirit of the Bucket Trophy

Virago

Perini Navi Cup

Panthalassa

Vitter’s Shipyard Seamanship Trophy

Don Gunning – Race Committee

Descriptions of Awards

Best Performance by an Alloy Yacht

All Star Crew Award

At each Bucket Event, every yacht is asked to cast a ballot for the yacht crew among the fleet that demonstrates the most professional service in all tasks, while maintaining the best voie de vivre, camaraderie, teamwork and respect among the crew.  This is the crew that displays the pinnacle of the profession and has the most fun at it – the yacht that everyone wants to work aboard.   Because the award is earned by peer recognition, it has earned serious stature within the marine industry.

Spirit of the Bucket Trophy

This award is presented each year by Alice Huisman, to the yacht that best exemplifies the spirit of the Bucket Regattas.  The selection is absolutely subjective, but considers sportsmanship, safe seamanship, best hospitality and overall contribution to the event.

We have created a lot of humor around the premise that “Bribes can get you anything in the Bucket” and this is where the truth comes clear.  The Bucket Regatta was really started as a Club of yacht owners who loved nothing more than sailing their yachts well, getting the best out of them, and then sharing great yarns and libation at the end of the day.  There are a group of owners who have contributed a lot to the event over the years, from tenders to parties, committee boats, etc.  It is this Spirit that sets this event apart from all others.  It is in recognition of this Spirit that the Wolter Huisman Memorial Trophy is awarded.

Perini Navi Cup

Perini-Navi Yacht with the best result.

Vitters Seamanship Trophy

Awarded to the yacht that demonstrates the best seamanship and sportsmanship in the interest of promoting safety on the race course.  All participants in the Bucket acknowledge that superyachts have serious limitations operating safely in close quarters and therefore, the RC has always valued safety well above performance.  This award will recognize the yacht that best demonstrates that understanding.  It also goes to prove that nice guys don’t always finish last!!

Skullduggery Cravat

The Skullduggery Cravat is a perfectly tied Admiralty Noose, framed, with instructions in elegant calligraphy on how to tie a proper, 13 turn noose.  This was originally awarded to the owner of SARIYAH in 2002, so his captain, Timothy Laughridge (Bucket Committee) could be hung at the pleasure of the Fleet.

The award was renamed and put forward by the Committee to reinforce the Bucket premise that we are NOT here to promulgate adult behavior.  The Cravat will be awarded to the yacht and crew who display the best bucket humor.  As a guideline, we again focus on SARIYAH, where one year they spent the evening prior to the last race, slaughtering a down feathered mattress, then they packed the feathers in with their spinnaker so when they set their ‘Chute with the Hawk logo the following day, they not only dusted the horizon with feathers, but left a rubber chicken hanging from their spinnaker pole!!!

 

 

Breathtaking photos, results and more on the web site: http://www.bucketregattas.com/stbarths/index.html

Cumlative Results

St. Barths Bucket Day One (Photo by  Claire Matches)

St. Barths Bucket Day One (Photo by Claire Matches)

 

By Norma Trease
 
My mother used to say “if life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” The Saint Barths Bucket version of this was heard at the end of today’s very rainy race from Rebecca’s helmsman saying “well, at least we don’t have to wash down – or chamois!” The other upside of this unseasonable – even cold – rain falling in buckets all day was that it brought wind. Albeit the gusty, the fluky, variable winds we saw proved as much a challenge as an asset. So Day One of the Saint Barths Bucket proved to be very interesting indeed, a dramatic start to an always fascinating racing spectacle.
 
To begin with, this incredible fleet, featuring 47 of the worlds’ most impressive sailing yachts, hailing from every yacht building nation on earth, with a LOA of close to two kilometers in length total is mind boggling to any normal human being, even us hundreds of die-hard Bucketeers. Add in a new, fourth ratings class, and the ever-present discussions which surround the Bucket Ratings System, and the stage is set for a lot of excitement.
 
Day One as usual featured the ‘Round the Island Race’ clockwise. The races here are based on the pursuit racing theory which has yachts begin at staggered times based on predicted performance, which when figured correctly (as if this were possible with a fleet of this breathtaking diversity), and counting in slightly differing courses for some of the classes – could, or should result in all of the yachts coming across the finish line at the same time. Great concept, and there’s doubt that no one does it better that our ratings guru Jim Teeters, but can you imagine the fear factor in that amount enormous, and hugely valuable fleet of floating assets bearing on the same finish line at the same time? Needless to say, it rarely happens just that way.
 
Todays’ Bucket racing proved about as good as it gets, despite the unseasonable weather. Most of the yachts had great starts, with many of them right on the money, or bare seconds behind their allotted times. Throughout the race, which was either 20.8 or 24.5 miles depending upon your class, there was some seriously thrilling sailing. The finishes – proving that the years of data crunching behind the Bucket Ratings system actually does produce results – were in a few cases almost too close. The final mark proved a bottle neck, which saw several encounters of the heart-stopping variety, including a couple of clusters of Perini Navis coming within drink-sharing distance of each other. A definitely too intimate meeting of Whisper, Rebecca and Salperton – which came very close to producing the seriously frowned-upon protest – was averted at the last minute by the usual gentlemanly discussion. No T-bones today!
These yachts, although increasingly built to perform on the race course, are still at heart cruising vessels, and invariably, the rarely seen stresses that racing places on the yachts can – and does – cause some damage. Depending on who you spoke to, there were anything from four to eight spinnaker sails shredded, including those on Barracuda and Meteor. Most seriously damaged was the largest yacht in the fleet, the very impressive 67m Baltic Yacht Hetairos, designed by one of hottest current yacht design collaborations possible, Dysktra and Reichel/Pugh. She unfortunately hit a submerged rock and did quite a bit of damage to her keel – yet finished the race to the bitter end.
 
This was a race where experience really counted. The gorgeous classic 43m ketch Rebecca, which was designed by German Frers, and built at Pendennis Shipyard, has participated in many yacht races worldwide. Their well-rehearsed team, composed of experienced former and current yacht skippers, has brought them onto the winners’ podium at numerous Buckets. They chose the conservative route, carrying up on deck and rigging three different spinnakers, and in the end, although they could have chosen a more aggressive approach, went with a heavier sail, but at least, brought it back on deck safe and sound. From my point of view riding on board as an ‘extra’, the swath she cut through the eleven vessel Elegantes de Mer class, with a start as second-to-last place, and finishing right in the middle provided a fantastic view of the entire fleet as we chased and caught up with most of the yachts on the course today.

St. Barths Day One (Photo by Oskar Kilborg)

St. Barths Day One (Photo by Oskar Kilborg)

 
The newly formed Mademoiselles de la Mer class, dominated by no less than ten Dubois designed beauties, saw a very excited Ed Dubois chortling over his very first ever Bucket race win on Lady B, snagging both first in class and first over all. Ganesha and Salperton IV came in at 2nd and 3rd place respectively. With the vast quantity of yacht owners they make happy year after year – not to mention the aesthetic satisfaction they bring to their legion of fans worldwide – they deserve lots of prizes. Congrats to him and his great Dubois team!
 
In Les Grandes Dames, a/k/a the Perini Navi class, there was a battle of titans, as two of the Bucket founder captains, Tim Laughridge and Ian Craddock did guest helmsman duty on Parsifal III and Antara. The light variable winds did not at all favor these elegant, stately beauties, yet that did not stop them from battling mightily all throughout the race course. Capt. Timmy snagged a First in class with some quite aggressive driving. Axia, with her multi-generation family team, their dogged hard work, and long-time Bucket participation, well merited their close 2nd in class. The sleek Panthalassa rounded out 3rd place in Les Grandes.

Symmetry Spinnaker (Photo by Pim Van Hemmen)

Symmetry Spinnaker (Photo by Pim Van Hemmen)

 
Adela, another long-time favourite Bucket boat, swept to first in Les Elegantes, with Blue Too and This Is Us chasing them closely. Overall winners were Lady B, Adela, and Mari-Cha III. The newly instituted daily prize givings were well-attended by many still soggy Bucketeers.
 
The rain stopped just in time for the chamois to be wielded, the champagne popped, and hors d’oeuvres to be prepared for the Yacht Hop, which due to some serious security measures, remained very civilized. Very popular were Bliss, Barracuda and Parsifal III, but as usual – the party winner favours always go to those dancing fools on Antara. Their theme this year was Motown, and they had the sound system, the tunes, the bling and the hairdos to carry it off in style.
 
The sun is out for Day Two of the Saint Barths Bucket 2012. We’re all looking forward to enjoying another great day out on the water. See you on the race course!

St. Barths Bucket  2012 (Photo by Claire Matches)

St. Barths Bucket 2012 (Photo by Claire Matches)