A total of 67 Swans from 12 nations head to Cowes for the Rolex Swan European Regatta next week

Next week, 67 Swans and around 800 sailors from all over Europe will converge on Cowes, Isle of Wight for the Rolex Swan European Regatta. The 12th edition of this biennial event will be hosted by the Royal Yacht Squadron from 19-25 June 2005.

Within the 66 Swans entered, 12 nations are represented, spanning Great Britain (with 43 entries), The Netherlands, Italy, Germany, France and Spain. With top class sailors participating onboard some 27 different Swan models, the regatta promises to deliver an exceptional week of close competition and a full social programme.

Andy Green, former British America’s Cup helmsman and tactician aboard Swan 45 Nemo of Cowes, is amongst those looking forward to the event. Green commented ahead of the regatta: “One of the great attractions of the Rolex Swan Europeans is the high level of competition and the huge diversity of Swans that take part. I am looking forward to racing in the Swan 45 class – it looks like there will be a very healthy fleet of them. The one-design racing is a big attraction for those Swan owners who want to experience top competition in level boats, which are more racer than cruiser.”

Grant Gordon, joint owner of Swan 45 Fever (GBR) along with Klaus Diederichs, will be amongst the hot competition in the ten strong Swan 45 Class. Gordon, who has recruited America’s Cup Sailor Chris Law as tactician, commented on his team’s preparation for the event: “The Fever team have had a busy winter season, since returning from the Swan 45 Gold Cup in Capri. We are very exited about the opportunity of racing against the rest of the Swan 45 fleet that will be in Cowes. For sure the competition will be fierce!”

A huge range of Swans are entered in Classes A and B, spanning the Nautor’s Swan portfolio from the traditional Sparkman & Stephens models to the innovative German Frers designs such as the new Swan 46 Lowly Worm (GBR) owned by John Dean. Colin Buffin, owner of Swan 44 Junkanoo is among those entered in this Class. Buffin who first raced Junkanoo at the Rolex Swan Cup 2004 in Sardinia, sees the Rolex Swan Europeans as an entirely different challenge: “The Rolex Swan European Regatta will be much more challenging given the more variable weather and tides. It is great to race against other Swans as the racing is more closely matched than at other open events. I am looking forward to catching up with old friends and rivalries from previous events.”

The Rolex Swan European Regatta commences on 19 June with two days of registration and inspections followed by the Opening Reception at the Royal Yacht Squadron on 20 June. Racing will commence on 21 June with Classes A and B racing a maximum of seven races, whilst Class C (Swan 45s) will race a maximum of 15 windward/leeward races. The regatta will conclude with the final prizegiving on 25 June.