One of the great classic Fiife schooners, the 130ft Altair, originally launched in 1931 is in the UK for a facelift

The great William Fife 111 classic schooner Altair is back in the UK for some major surgery after extensive rot was found in her oak stem. Duncan Walker at Fairlie Restorations has her under temporary cover at Saxon Wharf and already a new laminated iroko stem is in place.
Altair was launched in 1931 for a Mr Guy MacCaw who wanted to take her round the world. He never achieved that aim and in the intervening years, although the yacht has graced many a race course and anchorage, Altair has never managed a circumnavigation.
Now her new owner American Joe Pytka who makes commercials for the likes of Nike and MacDonalds is intending to sail her around the world with her young skipper Stephane Benfield from Bournemouth in charge.
We’ll be following Altair’s progress and hope to sail her when she is re-launched later this summer. In the meantime take a look at the next (August) issue of Yachting World for a more detailed description of what’s been happening to Altair.