What would you give to be here for a taste of this kind of racing?


You can keep all that TP52 stuff – even the best of the action photos leave me stone cold. It’s racing by professionals for professionals, the sort of achingly dull story you couldn’t sell to the reading public if you gave away each copy cover-mounted with a gold-plated fid.

Now this, on the other hand, is prime armchair sailing: Monaco Classic Week, as photographed by the incomparable Philip Plisson.

From the top, Dennis Conner applying the expert touch to his 1925 vintage 49ft Anker-Jenson ‘Q’ classCotton Blossom II(look at that beautiful tiller wedged under his oxter); two different views of the 160ft gaff schoonerEleonora, a replica of Nat Herreshoff’s Westward (the original, incidentally, was deliberately blown up in 1947 north of the Casquets at the behest of her late owner); and, finally, a proper bowman grips with his toes!

Who in their right mind wouldn’t want a go at this? Who do I have to kill to go to Les Voiles de St Tropez. Hmmm. Watch your back, David Glenn?