The Nacira-designed French 60 footer Solune, owned by Mons. Jean-Philippe Chomette wins Somerset Memorial Trophy

The Royal Ocean Racing Club is pleased to announce that the ‘Yacht of the Year 2004’ has been won by the Nacira-designed French 60 footer Solune, owned by Mons. Jean-Philippe Chomette. She wins the Somerset Memorial Trophy for outstanding achievement for a yacht owned or sailed by an RORC member, and voted for by the RORC Main Committee.

The award was very hotly contested this year with a large number of potential winners, but it was Solune’s Round Britain and Ireland record breaking sail, coupled with her class win in the Round Ireland Race and her overall victory in the Cascais Race that tipped the balance in her favour.

Starting on 3 May, Solune broke the Round Britain and Ireland record by an astonishing three days and 15 hours, in an elapsed time of 7d 4h 46m 22s. Her overall win in the Cascais Race was achieved in very unpleasant and difficult conditions, as was her class victory in the Round Ireland Race.

Commenting on Solune winning the RORC ‘Yacht of the Year’ award, Chris Little, Commodore of the RORC, said: “We had a difficult time in deciding an overall winner of the Trophy this year. There were a number of very deserving contenders, all of whom had points in their favour. We chose Solune for her consistently good performance which was confirmed with her record breaking sail around Great Britain and Ireland. I congratulate J-P Chomette and his crew on a magnificent season.”