Panerai wraps up North American Circuit

with Museum of Yachting 33rd annual Classic Yacht Regatta

September 2012

The Museum of Yachting (MoY) 33rd Annual Classic Yacht Regatta, sponsored by Officine Panerai, was held September 1st-2nd in Newport, RI, with 55 classic sailing vessels participating in the final segment of the third annual North American Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge Circuit.

The impressive turnout of classic yachts was recognized by all participants and sponsors as a phenomenal display of annual commitment by the skippers and crews of the many classic and vintage boats that participated in the three New England regattas. The North American Circuit of the PCYC is comprised of the Corinthian Classic Yacht Regatta (August 11th-12th, Marblehead, MA), the Opera House Cup (August 18th-19th, Nantucket, MA) and the MoY Classic Yacht Regatta (September 1st-2nd, Newport, RI).

On Sunday night, Captains and Crew joined in a festive Dinner and Prize-Giving Ceremony on the lawn in front of the Museum of Yachting and Panerai Hospitality Lounge. Winning in the 12-metre class was AMERICAN EAGLE, a 68’ red-hulled beauty built in 1964 by A.E. Luders Jr., and helmed by Rick Bready. Winning in the S-class was OSPREY, a 1936 Herreshoff owned by Sheldon Whitehouse. PLEIONE, owned and helmed by Bruce Dyson, took first honors in the Spirit of Tradition and Gary Gregory’s VALIANT, a 1970 Sparkman & Stephen’s 64.25’ 12-metre, took top honors in the Classic A Division, as well as bringing home the Panerai Trophy for top performance in the Overall Series. W-class 37’ sloop RACE HORSE, owned by Donald Tofias, won the Spirit of Tradition class award for the Series. Classic B Division Award for the MoY Regatta was won by the 8-metre Fife-designed QUEST, owned by Diane Palm, who also walked away with First Place Overall in the MoY competition winning the coveted Panerai timepiece, a Panerai Radiomir Black Seal Automatic 45 MM (PAM 0287). Two weeks ago in Nantucket, Toronto-based QUEST, a newcomer to the Series, also took home the Opera House Cup’s top honors.

Sail Newport, a respected and active sailing center in the region, served as the official Organizing Authority for the 33rd Annual Museum of Yachting Classic Regatta.

The much-anticipated regatta started off Saturday with crisp northerly breezes – typical of the seasonal change in the Bay – setting a course for an unusual downwind start. Southerly sea breezes kicked in later in the day, changing the playing field altogether as the trailing boats caught up with the lead contenders.

Sunday’s race did not disappoint the most competitive sailors. The day started out with light breezes that changed direction constantly, forcing the Race Committee to make a quick decision to alter the course as competitors circled in anticipation of the start. All classes were finally set on a course that took them south past Hammersmith Farm (childhood home of Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis) to the mouth of Narragansett Bay, then on a downwind leg back past historic Fort Adams State Park, completing with a race under the Newport Pell Bridge and around the leeward mark near the U.S. Naval War College.

As has become Newport tradition, many of the participating yachts proudly hoisted their yacht club pennants and Panerai battle flags while circling Newport’s inner harbor for the Annual Classic Yacht Parade on Sunday morning. On -shore spectators and other sailing enthusiasts watched as the beautiful vessels embarked upon their race course start with precision, style, grace and plenty of spirit.

Likewise, Panerai’s tradition for each regatta has become to dedicate at least one day of classic sailing, before or after the race, to hosting patient and caregiver sails for the community residents who so generously host each of the N.A. regattas. Under the pennant of their founding sponsorship of Sailing Heals, a Massachusetts-based non-profit organization whose mission is to take cancer patients and their caregivers out for healing days of respite on the water, Panerai and their Host Captains sponsored local ‘VIP guests’ on three separate sailing outings on the breathtaking Narragansett Bay on Monday, September 3rd.

  • Panerai wraps up North American Circuit

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