Entries for this month’s Charles Stanley Cowes Classics Week look set to be significantly up on last year, standing at 145 today with Squibs and Mermaids expected on the Wednesday and Thursday making a total of 160 boats. The numbers represent an increase of 25% on last year and entries are still open until the 18 July.
Once again the classics, including the metre yachts, Solent Sunbeams, XODs, Darings, Swallows, Flying Fifteens and Bembridge One Designs, to name just a few, will be attending the five day event which kicks off at Cowes on 21st July.
Cowes Classics Week, which first took place in 2008 as a modest event for metre and classic dayboats, has since welcomed classic cruisers such as the Nicholsons, SCODs, Twisters and many beautiful one offs, while the Old Gaffer class is still going strong.
The yachts, representing 30 yacht clubs both in the UK and overseas, will be competing in 14 different classes over a number of race courses. Interest for newcomers continues to grow - over 40 entrants didn’t compete last year. Crews are coming from the UK and overseas, including a crew from Perth, Western Australia.
Back to defend their 2013 titles include overall winner of the event, current Harken Trophy holder Jo Burnie who sails a Solent Sunbeam. Mike Martell, winner of ￼last year’s largest class, the XOD, will also be back to try to hold off his 50-odd rivals for the Haines Boatyard Trophy. Saskia is the yacht to watch out for in the 8-metre class while David Gower will be defending his 2013 win in the Daring Class as the current holder of the Loup Garou Model.
Other competitors to watch are Ado Jardine in the XODs, several times winner of the Captains Cup and 2011 overall winner, Alastair Ashford also in the XODs and a former Captains Cup winner over specially from Antigua, who will have his eye on the the New Helm Trophy, among others, Roger Wickens in his Sunbeam the overall winner in 2011, the driving force behind the glass boats and arguably, with Alan Stannah, the saviour of this thriving class, the well known yachting journalist Bob Fisher in his lovely slippery Fife and last but not least Magnus Wheatley very successfully campaigning his new Daring this year who will be racing with Charles Stanley colleagues.
“We are expecting a very competitive turn out,” comments Principal Race Officer Peter Taylor. “Some of these yachts are over 100 years old but all are at the top of their game, and most are restored to immaculate condition.” Racing will be organised by the Royal London Yacht Club with support from the Royal Corinthian Yacht Club, Royal Victoria Yacht Club, Island Sailing Club and Cowes Corinthian Yacht Club.
- ends -