July 2016

Panerai British Classic Week came to a spectacular conclusion with one final round the cans race for all classes in glorious sunshine and a perfect Solent sea breeze. Royal Yacht Squadron Racing set courses that took the fleet west down Cowes Green and then brought them back together off Beaulieu for a thrilling massed reach into the finish.
The regatta has attracted entrants from as mainland Europe, Scandinavia and the USA, plus two crews from The Classic Yacht Club of Australia and one from The Classic Yacht Club of New Zealand, who raced in three chartered 1959 Morgan Giles 42’ Bermudan Sloops – Gryphis, Leopard and Pegasus..
The 2016 overall winner of the Panerai British Classic Yacht Club is Giovanni Belgrano of the 1939 Laurent Giles 39’ one-off Whooper, who had a clean sweep in Class 2 and was the top scoring yacht in the combined fleet races.
This is the second time that Giovanni and his team have won the week overall and he was effusive in his praise for the organisers and his fellow competitors. “The conditions have been outstanding, the organisation has been outstanding and the competition has been outstanding. Outstanding truly is the word for this regatta. From a technical point of view we were very lucky, we had the perfect conditions for the boat to win. The event offers a unique combination. It’s different to anything else, it’s stylish, it’s attractive.  It’s a chain reaction, it keeps attracting better boats because it’s stylish and it looks more stylish because it attracts better boats. The people who own them are lovely people and hopefully the event will just continue on this upwards spiral.  There is no other regatta where we can have such an experience.”
Each of the winning yachts received a Panerai Plate in addition to their class trophy. The Lutine Cup for Class 1 went to Sean McMillan’s Spirit 52 Flight of Ufford. Giovanni Belgrano’s Whooper won the Corinthian Cup for Class 2 and Michael Brigg’s 1904 Clyde Fife Linear 30 Mikado was all conquering in Class 3, receiving the Commodore’s Cup. Jonathan and Scilla Dyke’s with with Cereste in Class 4 earned them the Cereste Trophy. Robin Richardson’s Howlett designed St Kitts won the Event Trophy for the 6 Metre Class and Murdoch McKillop’s 1931 Fife designed Saskia was presented with the Universal 8 Cup for the 8 Metre Class.  Saskia also won the International Metre Trophy for the highest placed Metre boat at the regatta, while Mark Tyndall’s 1904 Bristol Channel Pilot Cutter Mascotte received the Brian Keelan Memorial Trophy for the highest placed Gaffer.
Panerai British Classic Week 2017 will take place from 8 to 15 July 2017.
The Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge continue in United States at the North American Circuit. The events will be take place at:
Marblehead, MA August 12th - 14th, 2016 - Corinthian Classic Yacht Regatta
Nantucket, MA August 19th - 20th, 2016 - Sail Nantucket Regatta
Nantucket, MA August 21st, 2016 - Opera House Cup
Newport, RI September 2nd – 4th, 2016 - Classic Yacht Regatta


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