With a break in the America’s Cup schedule until the weekend when the finals commence, it is the turn of the J Class and superyacht fleet racing to put on a show
Five J Class yachts raced in Bermuda today, making up one quarter of the 20-strong fleet of superyachts in a superyacht regatta that is being held as a showcase event to the 35th America’s Cup.
On Friday 16 June, the J Class will commence their own three day regatta, for which a record fleet of seven Js are expected to race for the first time in the near 90 year history of this illustrious class.
And it was announced today that on Saturday, during the first day of the finals of the America’s Cup, the J Class are due to put on a match racing display in the Great Sound for the thousands of fans viewing from the water and race village.
Both the brand new J Class Svea and the oldest J, Shamrock V, remained on the dock today.
Svea’s owner, who couldn’t make today’s race, is due to take the helm of his new yacht for the first time competitively tomorrow, while Shamrock is only entered in the official America’s Cup J Class Regatta that runs on 16, 19 and 20 June.
But even tied up stern-to the dock in Hamilton, these elegant craft make a simply dazzling sight – this video shows six alongside each other.
Today’s 16-mile triangular single race was held in very light breeze off the north shore of the island. Despite being over early at the start and having to re-cross the line, Hanuman, helmed by America’s Cup commentator Ken Read, showed unmatchable pace in the light airs to come back and take the win.
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The victory is the first of the three scheduled races at the America’s Cup Superyacht regatta and follows Hanuman’s win in the six strong J Class fleet at the St Barths Bucket in March.
Hanuman chose the preferred side for the first upwind leg and were already challenging then leaders Velsheda at the first mark. When Hanuman set a reaching spinnaker they extended away to win from Ranger in second place.
The dock talk is all still about the new J Class Svea, how fast she could be and whether she’ll be able to match the race-seasoned Js assembled here.
The racing can be followed here http://www.tractrac.com/web/event-page/event_20170
Here are some more shots from the day courtesy of Ingrid Abery
Pictures by Ingrid Abery