Harken Derm

Magic at Antigua Classics

Published on April 22nd, 2013

By Elaine Bunting, Yachting World
Was this the best day’s racing I’ve had in years? Or was that yesterday? Or maybe the day before? To tell you the truth, I’m losing count.

That’s what it’s like at Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta (Apr 18-23). This is an event I’ve been trying to prise from colleagues’ grip for years. They have been understandably reluctant to trade me a Vendée Globe or an ARC, for example, but maybe I sobbed or blustered, I don’t remember, except that I must have used some low wile to loosen their fingers and here I am, having some of the best sailing ever at a regatta.

Antigua Classics is a blast. It’s a got a special magic and though it’s justifiably famous all round the world I think it’s fair to say it is undersold. Seriously. This is a million miles from all the gung-ho testosterone regattas, yet the racing is needle sharp.

And the boats: well, what a treat for a yacht geek such as I am and you probably are. There are boats large and small, glittering and slightly grubby, ancient and just launched. All are fascinating. Everyone’s friendly, the racing and social programme is so well organised and there’s a fantastic, easygoing spirit.

If you put only one international regatta on your bucket list, make it this one. – Read on

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