(click on image below to view gallery)
Athena, the 295′ Huisman yacht and this year’s race committee boat, was even hard to make out in the foggy start conditions on Saturday for the first race start . Soon after the start the sea breezes kicked in and blew the fog out leaving a beautiful New England summer day. The breeze held for the afternoon at around 20kts. The 19 boat Bucket Regatta fleet flew around the course in the ideal conditions.
Timoneer, the 147′ DuBois/Vitters Ketch, dominated the day. Her seasoned crew racing flawlessly and furnishing first by 5 minutes. The new Perini Navi Performance 125′ Sloop, P2, came in second.
The two J Class yacht entries Ranger and the newly launched Hanuman (Endeavour II) were reminiscent of the old America’s Cup days with their beautiful long lines. The New Hanuman took third place after a close contest between the two boats. They beat Ranger ,who placed fourth, by only 38 seconds. Avalon finished fifth, followed 13 seconds later by the Swan 100, Virago in 6th, and the Swan 80, Selene 36 seconds later in 7th.
(click on images to enlarge)
Broken down into classes the results were: Les Gazelles des Mers (Racing Division), P2 finished first, Hanuman second, with Ranger in third place. Among Les Grandes Dames des Mers (Cruising Division), Timoneer is in first place, Avalon in second and Taza Mas in third place.
It was hard to tell which boat team won the party following the race. Clearly a great time was had by all the crews.
In another Bucket first, the 156′ Pendennis Shipyards, MITSEAAH, engineered to power at over twenty knots and sail with respectable performance, was challenged on day one in keeping up with the racing yachts on the upwind leg. Respecting the fact that the Bucket is also here to showcase the best attributes of each yacht while cultivating good racing, MITSEAAH was invited to start the race under full power, then execute a high speed 360 degree turn and roar off to the windward mark, where she re-converted to a sailing yacht, shut down the power and got into the race! Her left-field handicap worked well too; she crossed the finish line in fifth position.
Sunday’s racing started out with Mitseeah blasting across the start line at 20 kts without a bit of sail up.
The racing started out with light wind but sea breezes filled in during the afternoon. Summer Wind placed first, followed by Taza Mas in second , Sea Diamond took third for Sundays racing.
Jerry Kirby must not have gotten enough sailing time in during the Volvo Ocean Race. He was onboard Hanuman as Bowman.
These awards, first through third, are presented for the best performance overall for combined results, all classes, all races
Les Gazelles (Racing Class)
3rd Wild Horses
Les Grand Dames (Cruising Class)
2nd Taza Mas
All Star Crew Award presented by Holland Jachtbouw
(also presented by The Yacht Report and Crew Report Magazines)
At each Bucket Event, every yacht is asked to cast a ballot for the yacht crew among the fleet that demonstrates the most professional service in all tasks, while maintaining the best voie de vivre, camaraderie, teamwork and respect among the crew. This is the crew that displays the pinnacle of the profession and has the most fun at it – the yacht that everyone wants to work aboard. Because the award is earned by peer recognition, it has earned serious stature within the marine industry.
Vitter’s Shipyard Seamanship Trophy
The Vitters Seamanship Trophy is awarded to the yacht that demonstrates the best seamanship and sportsmanship in the interest of promoting safety on the race course. All participants in the Bucket acknowledge that superyachts have serious limitations operating safely in close quarters and therefore, the RC has always valued safety well above performance. This award will recognize the yacht that best demonstrates that understanding. It also goes to prove that nice guys don’t always finish last!!
The Chippewa Bomb
Hanuman On Narraganset Bay, Rhode Island, USA (Photo by George Bekris)
Most of the yachts are docked at Newport Shipyard. They are making the last of preparations for this weekend’s events. The First Gun/First race for the Newport Bucket will be at 12 noon Saturday July 18. Courses to be announced. Fair Weather Courses will be sailed in Rhode Island Sound.
No, they are not planning to Grill Out on P2.
Challenge and Adventure Image Galleries of Newport Bucket Regatta by George Bekris
(click on image to view gallery) http://www.challengeandadventure.com/Newport_Bucket2009/ http://www.challengeandadventure.com/Newport_Bucket2008/ http://www.challengeandadventure.com/Newport_Bucket2006/ http://www.challengeandadventure.com/Newport_Bucket2005/ .
British Olympic Tornado sailor Will Howden will join Ecover Sailing Team onboard the Ecover Extreme 40 for the first round of the iShares Cup 2009 in Venice Italy. Will joins the team as ‘bowman’ alongside skipper Mike Golding (GBR), Bruno Dubois (BEL) and Fraser Brown (NZL). Venice is the first city in the six stop European tour, with racing taking place between 15th -17th May.
Each race day involves up to 8 regatta-style inshore races, held close to the shore and the viewing public. With the iShares Extreme 40 races averaging just 12 minutes each and involving high-speed manoeuvres, sail hoists and drops, this is a punishing physical challenge for the whole team, especially the ‘bow’.
The world is more used to relating Ecover Sailing Team skipper Mike Golding with offshore single-handed racing. His CV detailing his success in this field speaks for itself: Mike was FICO world champion 2005/6 and IMOCA world champion for two successive years 2004/5 and 2005/6; the first and only B ritish sailor to hold this coveted title. He was also the first person ever to race single-handed and non-stop around the world in both directions and is one of just two British sailors to ever have stood on the podium in the Vendee Globe.
Ecover Sailing Team has an experienced crew for their first season competing in the iShares Cup. On the mainsheet will be Fraser Brown (NZL), one of the most experienced Extreme 40 sailors on the circuit having raced in the class from the outset. In 2008 he raced with double Olympic gold medallist Shirley Robertson, and the team won the first event in Lugano, Switzerland.
Trimming will be Bruno Dubois (BEL) who is a familiar face to Ecover and Mike Golding as the pair have sailed together on many races on the IMOCA Open 60 circuit. Bruno is the Managing Director of North Sails in France, has competed in the Whitbread Round the World Race, been crowned World Champion in the Corel 45 class and held a multihull speed record in his career. Bruno was also part of the crew on Kingfisher 2 for the Jules Verne attempt in 2002 and was the sail co-coordinator for Areva Challenge in the last edition of the America’s Cup.
© Running the front of the boat will be Will Howden (GBR), he is no stranger to these boats having been on the circuit since 2005. Will has also competed at two Olympic Games from Great Britain in the Tornado Catamaran.
“It has been great to step onboard with Mike and team,” commented Will. “I love these boats, they really are a thrill ride and we have a huge amount of diversity in our team. We all bring something to the table through our previous experiences and I think we have the potential for some good results on the water”.
The team has been training in Hyères, France as they prepare for the circuit and are now on their way to the first event in Venice, Italy. “It will be a bit of a baptism of fire for me!” said sk ipper Mike Golding. Our decision to join the iShares Cup came less than a month ago, since then we have assembled a great team, done a weeks training with our newly acquired Extreme 40 and put all the elements in place for our first event with the Ecover X40 in Venice. Like the iShares races themselves it’s been a mad dash! But we will be there and raring to get started!
Ecover Sailing Team Extreme 40
Skipper – Mike Golding (GBR)
Main – Fraser Brown (NZL)
Trimmer – Bruno Dubois (BEL)
Bow – Will Howden (GBR)