Tom Lofstedt and team have won the Hanseatic Lloyd Dragon 75th Anniversary Regatta in St Tropez


Swedish sailor Tom Lofstedt from the Royal Swedish Yacht Club, sailing Maria, with Martin Alsen and Martin Larsson, has won the Dragon 75th Anniversary Regatta in St Tropez.

This was a one off, do-or-die, win the regatta race, and the former 470 sailor put on an impressive performance against a cast of “names” that any class would be proud to have sailing with them.

Lofstedt and his crew had finished fourth in the qualifying races, with 9th and 1st places on the scoreboard, then scored a ninth in Thursday’s anniversary race, when all 267 boats started together.

In Friday’s Champion of Champions race he was robbed of first place on the finishing line by no lesser person than Russell Coutts, who had also beaten him by one place on Thursday.

Second place went to Denmark’s Jorgen Schoenherr sailing African Queen, putting on his best performance of the week, this result goes well with his win at the Gold Cup in Falmouth, England, earlier this year.

John Ross-Murphy of Ireland, who won the Anniversary race on Thursday, came home third sailing Rigmarole, to cap a good week for the Irish, after Ward Wood chalked up first and second places in the qualifying heats.

Olympic gold medallist, and one of Denmark’s sailing legends, Valdemar Bandolowski, took fourth place, ahead of another Dane Soren Pehrsson, with Germany’s Hans-Werner Zachariassen sixth.

After what had been a good week for Andy Beadsworth, qualifying for the gold fleet in third place, sailing David Palmer’s Princess Jalina, he finished a disappointing 20th, but first British boat, in Saturday’s race.

After poor weather conditions had spoiled some of the races earlier in the week, a gutsey final day left the competitors with a smile on their faces, after a good hard race in 25 knots of breeze and sunshine.

Russell Coutts who hadn’t had a result out of the top ten all week, found himself disqualified for a premature start, and joins an impressive list of those who have suffered the same fate this week, including most of the royalty who are in the regatta.

This is definitely the end of the season in St Tropez, competitors were able to see snow on the mountains behind St Maxim, on the other side of the bay, when they woke this morning.

Results: Gold fleet

1. SWE321 Maria – Tom Lofstedt/Martin Alsen/Martin Larsson

2. DEN 345 African Queen – Jorgen Schoenherr/Anders Kaempe/Axel Waltersdorph

3. IRL 174 Rigmarole – John Ross-Murphy/Ailbe Millerick/Ed Peel

4. DEN 338 Deefree – Valdemar Bandolowski/Erik Hansen/Soren Hualso

5. DEN 319 Notorius – Soren Pehrsson/Jorgen Bonde/Philip Skafta Holm

6. GER 816 Assi – Hans-Werner Zachariassen/Michael Kurtz/Peter Eckhardt