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IYRS and Museum of Yachting 36th Annual Classic Yacht Regatta, NY 12 “Rowdy” passes behind the Committee boat “Carinia” (Photo by George Bekris)

Panerai North American President Rafael Alvarez and a host of others awarded the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge North American Circuit’s top classic racing prizes this past weekend, as well as naming the Best Overall Winner for the Museum of Yachting (MoY) 36th Annual Classic Yacht Regatta. The two day regatta took place September 5th – 6th in America’s famed racing capitol Newport, RI. Fifty-two classic sailing vessels entered the final segment of the sixth annual Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge (PCYC) North American Circuit; of which nearly 20 were eligible to win the Panerai Circuit Prizes, having competed in their respective classes in two of the three Regattas and participated in a minimum of three of the five Circuit racing days.

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The North American Circuit of the PCYC is comprised of the Corinthian Classic Yacht Regatta (held August 8th – 9th in Marblehead, MA), the Opera House Cup (held August 16th in Nantucket, MA) and culminates with the MoY Classic Yacht Regatta, which is held annually over Labor Day weekend at historic Fort Adams State Park. While the PCYC North American Circuit is celebrating six years of spirited competition under Panerai’s sponsorship, it has been 11 years since Officine Panerai, the Italian high-end watch brand, first launched their global classic yachting regatta series in 2005 and 10 years since they began hosting some of the country’s most prestigious classic yachting events in ports around New England.

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The MoY Classic Yacht Regatta Race

Saturday brought pleasant temperatures, blue skies and plenty of sunshine with early afternoon winds light out of the north at 5 knots, which delayed the race start by over two hours. While the Race Committee determined which wind direction would win out, a situation Newport sailors are accustomed to, the captains and crews patiently waited for the winds to increasingly blow from the south northward. The competitors got their wish when just after 2 p.m. the Race Committee, under the stewardship of Organizing Authority Sail Newport, announced a shortened 5.5 mile course to the north and started the race, allowing the sailors to have an afternoon of competition on Narragansett Bay before they returned to Fort Adams State Park and the Panerai Hospitality Lounge for the annual MoY CYR Cocktail Party.

"When And If" (Photo by George Bekris)

“When And If” (Photo by George Bekris)

Sunday’s more robust winds out of the southwest reached upwards of 18 knots and created perfect conditions for the entire fleet, which chartered an almost 20 mile course from the middle of Narragansett Bay, south to Rhode Island Sound and then north to circumnavigate Conanicut Island and round the island’s northern tip. The fleet finally returned south under the Newport-Pell Bridge toward Newport Harbor, followed by dozens of spectator boats cheering them on.

"The Blue Peter and "Rugosa" (Photo by George Bekris)

“The Blue Peter and “Rugosa” (Photo by George Bekris)

Prior to the race start on Sunday morning, many of the participating yachts took part in the Newport tradition of proudly hoisting their yacht club pennants and PCYC flags to circle Newport’s inner harbour for the Annual Classic Yacht Parade. From land and sea, spectators could appreciate the beauty and spirit of the wide range of classic boats, from grande dame yachts (one of which boasted a crew serenading spectators with a jolly rendition of “You Are My Sunshine”), to classic motor yachts, and a small Bantry Bay gig enthusiastically crewed by 12 uniformed rowers.

"Angelita" passes the New York Yacht Club during the parade prior to race start. (Photo by George Bekris)

“Angelita” passes the New York Yacht Club during the parade prior to race start. (Photo by George Bekris)

The MoY Prize Giving Ceremony and Special Mentions

Ahead of the MoY Regatta Dinner and the evening’s finale presentation of the Panerai North American Circuit Awards, members of the Board of Trustees representing IYRS School of Technology & Trades/Museum of Yachting presented dozens of awards recognizing spirit and classic yachting design. Of special note, MINK, a 32′ Buzzards Bay 1925 (1914), was recognized as the winner of the Tom Benson Award for Restoration, in addition to winning best performance within the Herreshoff-designed fleet and best performance of a gaff-rigged vessel.

The famous Clingstone Cannon – the award for “Best Corinthian Spirit” – was fired off for SUMMER WIND, a 37′ Carriacou Sloop Day Racer and its skipper Dennis Dowling and crew.

PCYC Regatta Committee Chair Bill Doyle took the podium midway through the dinner to pay a tribute to recently passed Newport classic sailing enthusiasts and visionaries Jack Brown and Jim Cassidy and to begin announcing the Panerai Awards.

"Valiant" US 24 (Photo by George Bekris)

“Valiant” US 24 (Photo by George Bekris)

The Official Panerai Prize-Winners

Mr. Doyle explained the distinction between the “starting classes” and the “scoring classes” and proceeded to announce that this year the Panerai 1st Place Class Winners would receive a beautifully engraved Silver Plate, presented by Mr. Alvarez, in addition to the traditional trophy winners for the Best Overall in the Vintage and Grand Prix Divisions.

For Best Overall Performance in the MoY Classic Yacht Regatta, Rafael Alvarez presented a Radiomir 1940 3 Days Acciaio – 47mm (PAM00514) to Newporter George Hill of WEATHERLY. The celebrated 12-Metre was the only boat to have won the America’s Cup on its second attempt, after losing to COLUMBIA in the 1958 Defender trials. Mr. Hill, who rescued and restored the racing yacht, was stunned and delighted to accept the Panerai top prize for his yacht’s performance.

Nashua, Dagger and Galavant (Photo by George Bekris)

Nashua, Dagger and Galavant (Photo by George Bekris)

Walking away with the replica Vintage Class trophy was SIREN and DAGGER took home the Grand Prix Class trophy for the Circuit. The perpetual trophies will be engraved with the winning boats’ names and placed on display at the Museum of Yachting at IYRS until next year’s competition.

PCYC NA Circuit Division Class Winners:

Grand Prix Class
Day Racer – DAGGER – A 35′ Hunt International 225 (1940), skippered by Ted Boynton
Yacht – NASHUA – A 47′ W-46, skippered by Wendy Schmidt

Vintage Class
Day Racer – ADAMANT – A 24′ Adams Interclub (1937) skippered by Mark Pincus
Corinthian Classic – SIREN – A 45′ S&S designed NY-32 skippered by Peter Cassidy
Grand Classic – WEATHERLY – A 1962 America’s Cup defender 12-Metre (1958) that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places; owned and skippered by George Hill

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Among the fleet competing for the Vintage Class prizes were three 1905 Herreshoff NY-30s, as well as their successors, the NY-32 fleet designed by esteemed naval architects Sparkman and Stephens, of which SIREN was a part of this special reunion of New York Yacht Club classic yacht racers.

Among the many noteworthy competitors, a few stand outs which competed in multiple regattas comprising the 2015 PCYC North American Circuit, included WHEN AND IF, THE BLUE PETER, GALAVANT, TICONDEROGA and BLACK WATCH.

"When And If" (Photo by George Bekris)

“When And If” (Photo by George Bekris)

Panerai and Healing Sails

Panerai has dedicated at least one day of classic sailing, before or after each regatta during the PCYC North American Circuit, to sponsoring patient and caregiver sails for the community residents who live in the vicinity of the racing. Again this year, Panerai partnered with Sailing Heals, a Massachusetts-based non-profit sailing organization, along with their dedicated Host Captains to host more than 20 local ‘VIP Guests’ for a beautiful Italian-inspired lunch followed by a rejuvenating sail on five separate classic boating vessels: THE BLUE PETER, WILD HORSES, WINDIGO, GALAVANT and TOBIAS on beautiful Narragansett Bay.

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Ted Turner At Helm of American Eagle ( Photo by George Bekris )

America’s Cup history will repeat itself this week in Rhode Island when the 12 Metre North American Championship features two of sailing’s most famous skippers, Ted Turner and Dennis Conner, reuniting with their winning tacticians, Gary Jobson and Tom Whidden, respectively.

Turner, an American media mogul and philanthropist, will sail American Eagle in the Traditional division at the regatta, while Conner, known as “Mr. America’s Cup,” will sail KZ-7 (Kiwi Magic) in the Grand Prix division.

The three-day regatta takes place from September 21-23 in Newport, Rhode Island, with racing starting each day at 11am on Rhode Island Sound, where the Cup races were staged from 1930 until 1983.

All nine participating 12 Metres will be berthed at Bannister’s Wharf, reminiscent of the glory days when America’s Cup legends roamed the docks there after racing each day and where those who attended the 12 Metre America’s Cup reunion two years ago revisited.

Turner has won the 12 Metre North Americans for the last two years here, sailing American Eagle as he did in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s. His performance in 2011 earned Turner first place in the Traditional division as well as the Pine Brothers Trophy for best overall performance.

“It’s a great thrill to reconnect with my long-time friend Ted Turner,” said Gary Jobson, who served as tactician for his skipper when Courageous beat Australia to win the 1977 America’s Cup.

“Ted is one of the heroes of our sport. He retired many years ago, but when he is on the water his competitive drive continues.”

About Conner, Jobson added, “Dennis Conner is one of the most successful American sailors of all time. Any time he is on the water he has a way of lifting every competitor’s game.”

Conner, a four time America’s Cup Winner (1974, ‘80, ‘87, ‘88), will have an impressive crew aboard KZ-7 (Kiwi Magic), which is currently owned by the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA) Foundation.

Tom Whidden, one of the most experienced AC sailors in the world, sailed with Conner in three of his victories (1980, 1987 and 1988), while three others have sailed with Conner during various AC campaigns: Jerry Kirby (2003), Dave Kulver (’92, ’95) and Ralf Steitz (’92, ‘95). Joining them will be Michel Maeder, who sailed with Baron Marcel Bich in 1980.

“This will be Kiwi Magic, powered primarily by Stars & Stripes,” said Steitz, recognising the irony that during the Louis Vuitton Challenger series held in Fremantle, Australia during 1986/’87, Conner had challenged the fairness of KZ-7’s fibreglass hull against the slower aluminum hulls being used at the time.

“We will, of course, also have five USMMA midshipmen sailing as part of the 15-man crew. It’s great to give these young people an opportunity to sail with these great legends in our sport, these America’s Cup notables who also are truly among the greatest sailors in the world,” said Steitz of the program of which he is president.

Approaching Newport Harbor In The Candy Store Cup (Photo by George Bekris)

In addition to American Eagle and KZ-7, Columbia, Courageous, Intrepid, KZ-5, USA, Victory ’83 and Weatherly will be racing. Other celebrity yachtsmen participating include America’s Cup veterans Jim Gretzky, Andy MacGowan, Tom O’Brien, Dave Pedrick, Scott Perry, Reggie Pierce, Richie Sayer and Bill Shore.

Columbia (Photo by George Bekris)

A special private-invitation event on Thursday, September 20, will kick off the 12 Metre North American Championships in style and serve a good cause by supporting the national nonprofit Hope For The Warriors®. The organisation was founded by Robin Kelleher, the wife of a Naval War College Officer, and supports wounded U.S. service members, their families and families of the fallen.

Cocktails and dinner will be served at the 12 Metre Yacht Club, located on the third floor of the famous Clark Cooke House on Bannister’s Wharf. During the dinner, 12 Metre Yacht Club Station Steward, Gary Jobson, will introduce Jimmy Gubelmann as the new commodore of the Club.

Also making presentations will be Ted Turner and combat-wounded veteran and solo distance sailor Ronnie Simpson.

The event concludes on Sunday, September 23, with an Awards Ceremony at Ida Lewis Yacht Club, which also serves as the Organising Authority of the event.

Herb Marshall, Vice President of the 12 Metre Americas Fleet, will present the Gubelmann Trophy for the winner of each class in the North American Championships; the Ted Hood Trophy for the highest points overall for specific regattas during the season; and the Pine Brothers Trophy for best overall boat in the North American Championships.

Ted Turner will present the Ted Turner Trophy for noteworthy contribution on or off the water.

Regatta Sponsor is Pine Brothers, while Supporting Sponsors are Boston Beer Company, Harbor Town Wine of NZ (partner to the 12 Metre fleet), Sebago and Atlantis.

Entries:

Grand Prix – yachts built for the 1987 America’s Cup
KZ-5 ~ KZ5, Kip Curren, Newport, R.I.
KZ-7 (Kiwi Magic) ~ KZ7, Dennis Conner, San Diego, California
USA ~ US 61, Andy MacGowan, Middletown, R.I.

Modern – yachts built between 1974 and 1983
Courageous ~ US 26, Ralph Isham, New York, N.Y.
Intrepid ~ US 22, Jack Curtin, New York, N.Y.
Victory ’83 ~ K 21, Dennis Williams, Hobe Sound, Fla.

Traditional – yachts built between 1958 and 1970
American Eagle/Hope for the Warriors ~ US 21, Ted Turner, Atlanta, Georgia
Columbia ~ US 16, Alain Hanover, Weston, Massachusetts
Weatherly ~ US 17, George Hill, Newport, R.I.

Further information: www.12mrclass.com

Victory '83 All Around and Candy Store Cup Winners (Photo by George Bekris)

Victory '83 Candy Store Cup Winners (Photo by George Bekris)

While history didn’t quite repeat itself today, it came pretty close.  The final races of the 2009 12 Metre World Championships were sailed on a sparkling Rhode Island Sound as helicopters buzzed and spectator boats jockeyed for front row seats to the action – evoking memories of 26 years ago to the day when the longest winning streak (132 years) in sporting history ended with the loss of the “Auld Mug” to Australia.  On this day, however, instead of just two Twelves there were 17 making their way around the old America’s Cup stomping grounds off Brenton Point and with many of the same spectators there to pay homage as the helicopters droned above.

Notable for traveling the furthest to be part of this largest gathering of Twelves since the Cup left Newport:  Challenge 12, which William Borel (Paris, France) had shipped from Europe early in the summer, and Australian Skip Lissiman who was onboard the Cup-winning Australia II in 1983.  “It’s fantastic to be back in Newport,” he said.  “I wanted to be back in particular for the anniversary and [to celebrate] I will be going down to O’Brien’s Pub where they have the original boxing kangaroo flag.  We’re going to exchange it with one that the entire crew signed last year when we celebrated the 25th and take the original flag back to the museum in Australia.”

For the final act of the world championships, two races were sailed in all four divisions – Grand Prix, Modern, Traditional and Vintage – before The Candy Store Cup was re-run after being abandoned on day two of racing. Bill Koch (Palm Beach, Fla./Osterville, Mass.), on Kiwi Magic-KZ7, won the  Grand Prix division after adding finishes of 1-3 for a net total of seven points.  Lexi Gahagan (Wilmington, Del.), driving Wright on White-KZ3, finished 3-2 to place second overall in the division standings, one point back.

More Photos Of The Action Can Be Seen HERE

The Traditional Division saw the only real upset of the championship as Charlie Millikin and Carol Swift (both Newport), on American Eagle-US21, fought back from a three-point deficit with a 1-2 today to tie Weatherly’s Clay Deutsch (Newport) who finished 2-3.  With eight points apiece, the tie-break went in favor of American Eagle earning Swift a surprise swim off the dock at Bannister’s Wharf courtesy of the crew.  In the Vintage division, Einar Sissener (Oslo, NOR), on Gleam-US11, was one point out of first when the day began and placed first in both races to win by three points over Kip Curren (Middletown, R.I.), on Northern Light-US14.

“In the Modern fleet, on any given day any boat can win, they’re all that close,” said Dennis Williams (Hobe Sound, Fla./Mashpee, Mass.) after winning that division on Victory ‘83-K22.  He explained that it was Courageous who was their biggest competition after they had “two good races today and in conditions that were really pretty crazy.  They had a first and second and I think we were two points apart with one throw out, so very close.  The wind was shifting left and right and the velocity was up and down …it was a very crazy day, it was not predictable.  Everybody worked hard trying to keep the boat on track with the shifting winds.”

In addition to winning his first world championship title, it was “nice to put a little icing on the cake,” said Williams about winning The Candy Store Cup which gave a single start for all divisions and sent them on a course back from Rhode Island Sound, past Castle Hill Light, and into Newport Harbor for a finish off Bannister’s Wharf where champagne was awaiting all the teams.  “It was great,” said Williams of the 2009 12 Metre World Championship.  “Everyone on the boat enjoyed it, we had a great time, great crew.  It was just fabulous.  The competition was great.”

2009 12 Metre Worlds Final Standings

Place, Boat Name-Sail Number, Skipper (Hometown), Finish positions, Total Points

Division I – Grand Prix

1. Kiwi Magic-KZ7, Bill Koch (Palm Beach, Fla./Osterville, Mass.) 2-2-1-1-1-(3), 7

2. Wright on White-KZ3, Lexi Gahagan (Wilmington, Del.) 1-1-2-2-(3)-2, 8

3. USA-US61, Richard Matthews (W. Mersea, GBR), 3-3-3-(3)-2-1, 12

4. America II-US46, Michael Fortenbaugh (New York, N.Y.), 4-4-DNF-4-4-4, 20

Division 2 – Modern

1. Victory 83-K22, Dennis Williams (Hobe Sound, Fla./Mashpee, Mass.), 1-1-2-1-3-(3), 8

2. Courageous, US26, Stephen Glascock (New York, N.Y.), 3-2-(DSQ)-2-2-1, 10

3. Freedom-US30, Ernest Jacquet (Boston, Mass.), 4- 5-1-4-1-(5), 15

2. Intrepid-US22, Jack Curtin (Toronto, CAN), 2-3-4-5-(5)-2, 16

5. Challenge 12-KA10, William Borel (Paris, FRA), (DSQ)-4-3-3-4-4, 16

Division 3 – Traditional

1. American Eagle-US21, Charlie Millikin/Carol Swift (both Newport, R.I.), (4)-2-2-1-1-2, 8

2. Weatherly-US17, Clay Deutsch (Newport, R.I.), 2-1-1-2-2-(3), 8

3. Columbia-US16, Alain Hanover (Weston, Mass./Palm Beach, Fla.), 1-3-3-3-3-(DNS), 12.5

4. Nefertiti-US19, Sears Wullschleger (Nantucket, Mass.), 3-4-4-4-4-(DNF), 19

5. Easterner-US18, Paul Callahan (Ft. Meyers, Fla./Newport, R.I.), 5-5-(DNS)-5-5-1, 21

Division 4 – Vintage

1. Gleam-US11, Einar Sissener (Oslo, NOR), (3)-1-2-1-1-1, 6

2. Northern Light-US14, Kip Curren (Middletown, R.I.), 1-2-1-2-3-(3), 9

3. Onawa-US6, Morten Kielland (Geneva, SUI), 2-DNF-(DNS)-3-2-2, 13

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Freedom Approaches The Finish Of The Candy Store Cup (Photo by George Bekris)

More Photos Of The Action Can Be Seen HERE

12 Metre Boats Racing Off Breton Point (Photo by George Bekris)

There were no surprises in the finishes posted by the 17 Twelves who completed only a single race today at the 2009 12 Metre World Championship.  After sailing out to the old America’s Cup racecourse off Brenton Point, the wind speed took a nosedive as it changed direction from WSW to NNW, leaving the competitors drifting for close to two hours.  With one race completed, the four divisions were given a combined start for the Candy Store Cup, sending them on a course back into Newport Harbor to the finish line at Bannister’s Wharf.  The wind, however, continued to be uncooperative and the race was abandoned when the Twelves were unable to make the time limit for the race. 

Yesterday, racing in the Modern division was quite contentious, with the outcome of numerous protests resulting in Challenge 12 and Courageous each picking up a DSQ when the jury decisions did not go in their favor and causing a complete shake up in the results for that division.  Unscathed by the protests, Dennis Williams (Mashpee, Mass.) at the helm of Victory ’83 is reaping the benefit of having assembled a crew that includes several who have sailed together for close to 30 years, including Heart of America veterans Wally Henry (San Diego, Calif.) and Jim Gretzky (Storrs, Conn.), along with three father and son pairs – Jerry and Rome Kirby, Bill and Randy Shore (all Newport, R.I.) and Larry and Matt Mialik (both Madison, Wisc.), making for a well-oiled effort as evidenced by the 1-1-2 they posted on day one. 

Peter Stalkus (Newport, R.I.), navigator aboard Victory ’83, has the distinction of having been navigator with four America’s Cup campaigns (’80 Clipper, ’83 Defender, ’87 USA 61 and ’97 Young America).  His take on Victory ‘83’s impressive performance here is that Dennis Williams, its owner, has been meticulous in his approach.  “The boat is well prepared and it shows,” said Stalkus after the team picked up their third win in four races.  “It has good speed and we’ve practiced ahead of time.” 

While the fallout from the protest decisions catapulted Intrepid from fifth into second and Freedom from fourth to third, today’s result did not do much to help either.  Intrepid added a fifth-place finish today and dropped back to fourth overall, while the Freedom’s fourth-place finish held them in place.  For Courageous, who had slipped from third to fourth overall after the protest, their second-place finish today moved them up to second overall.  Challenge 12, dropping from second place to fifth after the protest results, was third in today’s race and did not move in the overall standings.  

Bill Koch (Palm Beach, Fla./Osterville, Mass.), on Kiwi Magic,  leads the Grand Prix division, while tied on points – six each – with Lexi Gahagan (Wilmington, Del.) on Wright on White.  In the Traditional division, Clay Deutsch (Newport, R.I.) on Weatherly leads with six points, three ahead of American Eagle being driven by Charlie Millikin and Carol Swift (both Newport, R.I.).  Kip Curren (Middletown, R.I.) on Northern Light is leading by one point over Gleam, driven by Einar Sissener (Oslo, NOR), in the Vintage division.

Images By George Bekris

(click on image to enlarge)

Legends Forums – The Legends Forums are a unique sidebar to the 2009 12 Metre Worlds, bringing together the biggest names of the America’s Cup 12 Metre era for question-and-answer sessions moderated by Gary Jobson (Annapolis, Md.), who won the America’s Cup with Ted Turner in 1977 and went on to become the voice of sailing for television.  Held after racing each day dockside at Bannister’s and Bowen’s Wharves, with a finale forum planned for Sunday, as well, at the awards ceremony at Harbour Court, the forums are designed to include representation from a varied – and knowledgeable – group of personalities in the categories of Syndicate Representative, Crew, Design, Journalist and Other Notables.  On opening day, the panel included Skip Lissiman (AUS), Gianfranco Alberini  (ITA), Russell Coutts (NZL), and Americans Charlie Hovey, Harry Anderson, Dave Pedrick, Andy MacGowan, Bill Koch and Dick Enerson.  The questions ran the gamut from “Who was the best 12 Metre skipper?” (all of them who won, it was decided in consensus) and “What was the best Twelve ever?” (Intrepid for being the biggest departure, changing all future designs) to “What will win the next America’s Cup, a trimaran or a catamaran?” (that one was a toss-up).  Clearly, the audience was enjoying  the up close-and-personal encounter, and they lingered to talk about the exchanges long after the luminaries had left, some even discussing what questions would be best to ask a different group tonight.

intrepid

Intrepid (Photo by George Bekris)

Racing resumes tomorrow, Friday, September 25, and concludes Saturday, September 26.  

2009 12 Metre Worlds Results for Thursday, Sept. 24, 2009
Place, Boat Name-Sail Number, Skipper (Hometown), Finish positions, Total Points

Division I – Grand Prix

1. Kiwi Magic-KZ7, Bill Koch (Palm Beach, Fla./Osterville, Mass.) 2-2-1-1, 6

2. Wright on White-KZ3, Lexi Gahagan (Wilmington, Del.) 1-1-2-2, 6

3. USA-US61, Richard Matthews (W. Mersea, GBR), 3-3-3-3, 12

4. America II-US46, Michael Fortenbaugh (New York, N.Y.), 4-4-DNF-4, 17

 

Division 2 – Modern

1. Victory 83-K22, Dennis Williams (Mashpee, Mass.), 1-1-2-1, 5

2. Courageous, US26, Stephen Glascock (New York, N.Y.), 3-2-DSQ-2, 13

3. Freedom-US30, Ernest Jacquet (Boston, Mass.), 4- 5-1-4, 14

2. Intrepid-US22, Jack Curtin (Toronto, CAN), 2-3-4-5, 14

5. Challenge 12-KA10, William Borel (Paris, FRA), DSQ-4-3-3, 16

 

Division 3 – Traditional

1. Weatherly-US17, Clay Deutsch (Newport, R.I.), 2-1-1-2, 6

2. American Eagle-US21, Charlie Millikin/Carol Swift (both Newport, R.I.), 4-2-2-1, 9

3. Columbia-US16, Alain Hanover (Weston, Mass./Palm Beach, Fla.), 1-3-3-3, 10

4. Nefertiti-US19, Sears Wullschleger (Nantucket, Mass.), 3-4-4-4, 15

5. Easterner-US18, Paul Callahan (Ft. Meyers, Fla./Newport, R.I.), 5-5-DNS-5, 21

 

Division 4 – Vintage

1. Northern Light-US14, Kip Curren (Middletown, R.I.), 1-2-1-2, 6

2. Gleam-US11, Einar Sissener (Oslo, NOR), 3-1-2-1, 7

3. Onawa-US6, Morten Kielland (Geneva, SUI), 2-DNF-DNS-3, 13

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Easterner Rounding The Mark Just Ahead Of American Eagle (Photo by George Bekris)

 Some of the competitors at the 2009 12 Metre World Championship are certainly experiencing déjà vu as a veritable “Who’s Who” of sailing walked the docks at Bannister and Bowen’s Wharves this morning as the first day of this long-anticipated event got underway.  From current America’s Cup poster boy Russell Coutts (Auckland, NZL), who is sailing on Kiwi Magic with Cup patron and skipper Bill Koch (Palm Beach, Fla./Osterville, Mass.), to Dawn Riley (St. Clair Shores, Mich.) who broke ground as team leader of the first women’s entry in the Cup, to noted British sailors Harold Cudmore (Cowes, GBR) and Andy Green  (Lymington, GBR), there is a surfeit of recognizable faces.  Twenty-six years ago when the America’s Cup was won by Australia (in 1983) in Newport, it ended the longest winning streak in sporting history (132 years).  Four years later, two more milestones in the event’s history were marked:  Dennis Conner became the first person to lose and then win the Cup, and the Twelves were sailed for the last time as the America’s Cup yacht of choice after 29 years.  

“It’s wonderful to wander about the docks at Bowen’s and Bannister’s Wharf and see the 12 Metres here again, where they were in ’83, many of them with their same crews from then,” said Robin Wallace (Newport, R.I.) who was a member of Race Committee for the Challenger Series in ‘83 and is the Principal Race Officer for this event.  “With the current legal squabbles going on, people have become disenchanted with the America’s Cup, but this is like a re-awakening of the class, a reinvention of a competition that celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the 12 Meters first being used in the Cup.”

Divided into four divisions – Grand Prix, Modern, Traditional and Vintage – the 17 competing yachts sailed three races today, all in different wind levels in the Twelves old stomping grounds off Brenton Point.  The southwesterly breeze went from light, increasing to 12 knots for race two, and into the mid-teens for the third race, with a relatively flat sea state until race three.  

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French Supporters Cheer On Challenge 12 ( KA 10 ) As They Head Out For Race One (Photo by Donna Erichsen)

 We broke a couple of sails,” said Dawn Riley who came to the event to participate in the Legends Forums and wound up racing on America II.  “But, we’re kind of a slower boat in the Grand Prix so we were happy to beat one of the boats to the top mark and almost to the bottom mark.  And, we improved from the first race to the second race and everybody on board had fun.  The bad news is you break sails and you can’t race, the good news is it was full-on physical, athletic, screaming, swearing . . . and everyone came out with smiles.”

All Images By George Bekris

(click on image to enlarge)

 

 
 2009 12 Metre Worlds Results 

Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2000, 3 races sailed (3 races total)

 Place, Boat Name-Sail no., Skipper (Hometown), Finish positions, Total Points

 Division I – Grand Prix

1. Wright on White-KZ3, Lexi Gahagan (Wilmington, Del.) 1-1-2, 4

2. Kiwi Magic-KZ7, Bill Koch (Palm Beach, Fla./Osterville, Mass.) 2-2-1, 5

3. USA-US61, Richard Matthews (W. Mersea, GBR), 3-3-3, 9

4. America II-US46, Michael Fortenbaugh (New York, N.Y.), 4-4-WDR, 13

 

Division 2 – Modern – Protests Pending

1. Victory 83-K22, Dennis Williams (Mashpee, Mass.), 1-1-2, 4

2. Challenge 12-KA10, William Borel (Paris, FRA), 2-4-3, 9

3. Courageous, US26, Stephen Glascock (New York, N.Y.), 4-2-4, 10

4. Freedom-US30, Ernest Jacquet (Boston, Mass.), 5-1, 11

5. Intrepid-US22, Jack Curtin (Toronto, CAN), 3-3-5, 11

 

Division 3 – Traditional

1. Weatherly-US17, Clay Deutsch (Newport, R.I.), 2-1-1, 4

2. Columbia-US16, Alain Hanover (Weston, Mass./Palm Beach, Fla.), 1-3-3, 7

3. American Eagle-US21, Charlie Millikin/Carol Swift (both Newport, R.I.), 4-2-2, 8

4. Nefertiti-US19, Sears Wullschleger (Nantucket, Mass.), 3-4-4, 11

5. Easterner-US18, Paul Callahan (Ft. Meyers, Fla./Newport, R.I.), 5-5-DNS, 16

 

Division 4 – Vintage

1. Northern Light-US14, Kip Curren (Middletown, R.I.), 1-2-1, 4

2. Gleam-US11, Einar Sissener (Oslo, NOR), 3-1-2, 6

3. Onawa-US6, Morten Kielland (Geneva, SUI), 2-WDR-DNS, 10

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

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Northern Light US-14 Sailing Into Newport (Photo by George Bekris)

 The 2009 12 Metre World Championships are expected to be the largest gathering of these vintage yachts in the 26 years since Newport last hosted the America’s Cup (in 1983) is scheduled for September 22-27, and the accompanying reunion of sailing personalities has drawn a great deal of interest and speculation. This will be a homecoming for these sailing legends, many of whom rose to prominence in the sport while racing “Twelves” on Narragansett Bay. The 2009 Worlds are the centerpiece of the Golden Year of Racing, a year-long 50th anniversary celebration of the 12 Metre’s debut in the America’s Cup, in 1958, which ultimately saw Columbia ~ US 16 defeat the British challenger, Sceptre ~ K17. Five America’s Cup winning boats (including Columbia), a winning skipper, and several boats that were in the Defender competition for the Cup will race. International sailors, including the skipper and crew from France’s Challenge 12, and crews from Norway (racing on Gleam), Switzerland (racing Onawa) and the United Kingdom (racing on USA ) will up the ante in what should be a fierce competition. In the Grand Prix Division, Kiwi Magic ~ KZ 7 will be skippered by 1992 America’s Cup winner Bill Koch (Osterville, Mass./Palm Beach, Fla.), while among the six Twelves sailing in the Modern Division are three (Courageous ~ US 26, Freedom ~ US 30 and Intrepid ~ US 22) who collectively have won the Cup five times. Cup winners Columbia ~ US 16 and Weatherly ~ US 17 will sail in the five-boat Traditional Division and Onawa ~ US 6, the oldest yacht in the American fleet, willcompete in the Vintage Division which will have three yachts racing.

12 Metre Intrepid (Photo by George Bekris)

12 Metre Intrepid (Photo by George Bekris)

The Twelves will be docked at Bowen’s Wharf and Bannister’s Warf in historic downtown Newport. Of particular interest to sailing afficionados will be the 12 Metre Legends Forums, sponsored by North Sails, held after racing in the 12 Metre Worlds Village at Bowen’s Wharf on September 23, 24 and25. Moderators Tom Whidden (Essex, Conn.) and regatta co-chairs Gary Jobson (Annapolis, Md.) and Jan Slee (Newport, R.I.) will interview the slate of 30+ participants who are skippers, tacticians, crew and yacht designers. They include Gianfranco Alberini (ITA), Richard du Moulin (Larchmont, N.Y.), Halsey Herreshoff (Bristol, R.I.), Ted Hood (Portsmouth, R.I.) , Luigi Lang (ITA), Andy MacGowan (Middletown, R.I.), Lowell North (San Diego, Calif.), Charles Dana, Bill Langan, David Pedrick and David Ray (all Newport, R.I.), Jack Sutphen (San Diego, Calif.) and Sam Wakeman (Cohasset, Mass.). The North Sails Legends Forum Finale will take place before the awards presentation on Sunday, September 27, at New York Yacht Club’s Harbour Court. Gary Jobson will narrate and produce a one-hour film for ESPN Classic on the history of the 12 Metres and the 2009 Worlds. Bill Koch is the Executive Producer for the film which will feature racing footage shot during the Worlds and interviews with the Legends. It is set to air Saturday, November 7, at 1:00 p.m. ET on ESPN Classic and will be available in the future on DVD.

Weatherly, Gleam and American Eagle

Weatherly, Gleam and American Eagle In Newport (Photo by George Bekris)

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Onawa On Narraganset Bay (Photo by George Bekris)

 

 

The 12 Metre Class competes in 5 Divisions: Status as of September 16, 2009

DIVISION A ~ Grand Prix – yachts built for the 1987 America’s Cup

America II ~ US 46 – Manhattan Sailng Club (Michael Fortenbaugh), based in New York City, built in 1986 for the ‘87 Cup
Kiwi Magic ~ KZ 7 – Bill Koch, based in Newport, built in 1986 for the ‘87 Cup
USA ~ US 61 – USA-61 LLC, based in Newport, built in 1986 for the ‘87 Cup, Richard Matthews, Skipper
Wright on White ~ KZ 3 – based in Newport, built in 1985 for the ‘87 Cup, Lexi, Gahagan, Skipper

DIVISION B ~ Modern – yachts built between 1974 and 1983

Challenge 12 ~ KA 10 – William Borel, based in Antibes, France, built in 1982 for the ‘83 Cup
Courageous ~ US 26 – Courageous Foundation (Stephen Glascock), based in Newport, built in 1974, ’74 & ’77 Cup winner
Freedom ~ US 30 – Ernest Jacquet, based in Newport, built 1979, ’80 Cup winner
Intrepid ~ US 22 – Jack Curtin, based in Newport, built in 1967,’67 & ‘70 Cup winner
Victory ’83 ~ K 22 – Dennis Williams, based in Newport, built in 1983 for the ‘83 Cup

Withdrawn:
Enterprise ~ US 27 – Jan & Caroline Slee, based in Newport, built in 1976 for the 1977 America’s Cup
Lionheart ~ K 18 – Harry Graves, based in Newport, built in 1979 for the 1980 America’s Cup
Valiant ~ US 24 – Gary Gregory, based in Marblehead, MA, built in 1970 for the 1970 America’s Cup

DIVISION C ~ Traditional – yachts built between 1958 and 1970

American Eagle ~ US 21 – Herb Marshall, based in Newport, built in 1964, Carol Swift/Charlie Milligan, Skippers
Columbia ~ US 16 – Alain Hanover, based in Newport, built in 1958, ‘58 Cup winner
Easterner ~ US 18 – Shake-A-Leg (Paul Callahan), based in Newport, built in 1958 for the ’58 Cup
Nefertiti ~ US 19 – Sears Wullschleger, based in Newport, built in 1962 for the ‘62 Cup
Weatherly ~ US 17 – Geotge Hill, based in Newport, built in 1958, ‘62 Cup winner, Clay Deutsch, Skipper

DIVISION D ~ Vintage – yachts built 1919 and 1937

Gleam ~ US 11 -, Elizabeth Tiedemann, based in Newport, built in 1937, Einar Sissener, Skipper
Northern Light ~ US 14 – Elizabeth Tiedemann, based in Newport, built in 1938, Kip Curren, Skipper
Onawa ~ US 6 – Syndicate owned (Morten Kielland), based in Newport, built in 1928

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Northern Light Sailing On Narraganset Bay (Photo by George Bekris)

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12 Metres

12 Metres In Newport (Photo by George Bekris)

 

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12 Metre In Newport (Photo by George Bekris)

12 Metre In Newport (Photo by George Bekris)