Superyacht Season Gets Underway in Antigua

Published on January 29th, 2016

(January 29, 2016) – The sixth edition of the Superyacht Challenge Antigua has attracted eleven entries for three days (Jan 29-31) of competitive racing along the stunning south coast of Antigua.

They say you make your own luck and in today’s opening encounter, yachts that maximised their performance in highly changeable conditions won the day.

A course of just over 25 miles was set with a windward start to Nelson’s followed by a triangular course and a windward leeward section. Wind shifts of up to 70 degrees kept the after guards of the magnificent fleet on their toes, and slick manoeuvres, sometimes at a moments notice, was a recipe for success on the first day of racing.

Visione takes the first win in the Corsairs Class
The Frers designed Swan 90 Freya, sailed an excellent first leg, spotting a left hand shift, to get into a great position at the first top mark. However, the larger yachts in the Corsairs Class showed impressive speed, chasing down Freya, which had been the first to start in the Corsairs Class.

Unfurling their enormous downwind sails, Visione, Nilaya, Nikata and Rebecca were up for the chase. Visione was the first to capitalise on the another big wind shift, the 147ft Baltic designed by Reichel/Pugh powered into the lead having taken a favourable angle for a fast downwind leg.

Unfortunately for the 140ft ketch Rebecca, an issue with a spinnaker hoist was their undoing for the first race of the Superyacht Challenge Antigua. “For safety reasons, we had to manoeuvre with our engine after the tangle and we immediately retired.” confirmed helmsman, Stan Pearson.

Visione went on to win the first race for the Corsairs Class taking line honours and the win by over 9 minutes on corrected time. A tremendous battle between the impressive Baltic 112, Nilaya and Swan 90 Freya ensued for second place. Nilaya won the duel by just two seconds on corrected time. The brand new Baltic 115, Nikata, taking part in its first race placed third.

Tenaz leads the Buccaneers home
The 128ft cruising Superyacht Tenaz, from the drawing board of Ed Dubois was the last yacht to start in the Buccaneers Class, but the superb aluminium sloop took both line honours and the win on corrected time by over 17 minutes from Oyster 82, Zig Zag. Tenaz read the wind shifts better than most to take her victory. The 102ft one-off ketch, Maramar sailed well to place third ahead of the 108ft Dubois designed sloop, SeaQuell.

The 126ft twin masted schooner Gloria did not have her best result, but the atmosphere on board was not dampened by the numerous squalls which stole the wind and decisive moments. Gloria’s spirit was undiminished. Inside knowledge puts her amongst the favourites to win tonight’s Famous Cook Off. Many of Gloria’s crew are from Falmouth Cornwall and if chef Emma’s home-made sausage rolls are a gauge of her culinary skills, then the sailors are in for a treat tonight.

The friendly Famous Cook-Off between participating yachts pits eleven superyacht chefs to produce mouthwatering cuisine for the competing sailors. One dish is cooked on a traditional Antiguan coal pot for the coveted prize. Well over 200 sailors will also be tasked to compete for the best dressed team. As with all social events for the Superyacht Challenge Antigua, no jacket is required!

Event websiteScoreboard

Report by Louay Habib, Media Cosultant Superyacht Challenge Antigua

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