This July, witness the graceful Swans ruffle their feathers at the Swan European Regatta 8/6/07
In early July nearly 70 Swan owners from seven nations will gather together for the 13 edition of the Swan European Regatta (SER). This biennial event, which takes place from 2-8 July, will be hosted by the Royal Yacht Squadron at Cowes on the Isle of Wight and also includes the third edition of Swan 45 Gold Cup, the World Championships for the Swan 45 Class. The entry list is looking impressive, and includes two class winners from the 2005 Swan European Regatta, Menenes and Fever, returning to defend their titles.
The Swan Line will be well represented at the Regatta with 25 different models entered and an average boat length of 54ft. Racing alongside models such as Cecille (GBR), a traditional Sparkman & Stephens Swan 35, will be the newly launched Uxorious III (GBR) a ClubSwan 42 from the German Frers Design Team. Colin Buffin, owner of Uxorious III, is looking forward to taking part in his second SER: “We took delivery of the CS42 in February and it has been a steep learning curve since then. It is a very different boat from our Swan 44 MkII, which is clearly an older generation of boat. The new boat is in some ways easier to sail as it does not “load up” the way the 44 did. The new boat converts stronger winds into higher speeds not a larger bow wave. The boat is competitive under IRC but it will be interesting to see how we do against the previous generations of Swans under the Nautor Swan rating. We may not have the teak finish but we certainly have boat speed.”
Competition on the water is expected to be fierce, with a host of high profile sailors, including Chris Law, Tim Powell and Jeremy Robinson competing, bringing with them a wealth of experience from the Volvo Ocean Race and other elite events. With the America’s Cup moving into its final stages, Crackerjack in particular has drawn strongly on the abundance of talent now available and will be calling on the skills of Luke Molloy, Anthony Merrington and world class navigator Simon Fisher amongst others, all fresh from their campaign onboard Victory Challenge. Mike Broughton, the world-renowned navigator and weather specialist, will be putting his experience behind WISC in this 12 race series and hoping it will give his team an edge.
Simon van der Byl, Rear Commodore Yachting, RYS, commented: “The Royal Yacht Squadron is very much looking forward to hosting both the Swan European Regatta and also the Swan 45 Gold Cup in July. The running of these events in the same week has thrown up some interesting challenges for the race committee, not least having to plan two separate race areas and two complete race teams! From a personal point of view I am really excited by the prospect of organising the events, with 46 Swans entered for the SER and 21 for the Gold Cup as I write.”
The Swan 45 Gold Cup promises to be an entertaining and hard fought competition with 21 one-design models already confirmed as entries. Entrants will be coming together from nine countries from around the world, including American William Douglass’ Goombay Smash and Russian Mikhail Mouratov’s Murka 11. Massimo Ferragamo’s Bellicosa will be defending its Championship title from stiff worldwide competition. Carlo Perrone and his crew on board Swan 45 Atlantica Racing (ITA) will be just one of the teams fighting for the title, following their recent success at Rolex Capri Sailing Week.
Carlo commented on what’s to come: “I am delighted with our recent win at Rolex Capri Sailing Week – it was a very competitive event with a lot of top class boats and crews there. Now we are busy preparing Atlantica Racing for Cowes. For myself and many of the crew it’s the first time we will have raced at Cowes and we are all very excited to be racing at such a prestigious event – and venue. There are a good number of entries for the Swan 45 Gold Cup so it is going to be very hotly contested – but I have full confidence in my crew and look forward to the event.”
There’ll also be as much action onshore as off, as members and friends of ClubSwan will enjoy an Opening Reception and the Owners’ Dinner at the Royal Yacht Squadron, and the final Crew Party will finish off the event with a bang.