One day to go to the 2017 Gstaad Yacht Club’s Centenary Trophy
One day to go and the organizers are overseeing the final details of the seventh edition of the Gstaad Yacht Club Centenary Trophy, the event dedicated to some of the most stunning and best performing classic yachts from the past century.
No less than 16 yachts ready to fight for the prestigious award in the Bay of Saint-Tropez tomorrow in weather conditions that are expected to be rather challenging.
The regatta, unique in its genre, is reserved to boats that are one hundred or more years old and in 2017 celebrates its seventh edition anniversary.
“Seven years ago, the Centenary Trophy was just an idea we had. But today we are here again in Saint-Tropez, to celebrate and praise some of the world’s most gorgeous old yachts. We are particularly happy to see an exceptional line-up for quality and variety of boats and, most of all, that we have been able to attract some of the best sailors from all over the planet. We have crews from Europe, North and South America and this is very much in tune with the club’s international nature.” said Peter Erzberger, Commodore of the Gstaad Yacht Club. “Welcome and fair winds to all, we hope you will enjoy the racing and the event’s typical friendly atmosphere.”
Debuting in the Trophy will be Chips, a P-Class Marconi sloop that will be skippered by Bruno Troublé, who won the Trophy back in 2014 on the almost sister-ship Olympian. “This year I’m racing on Chips” explained French America’s Cup veteran. “She was designed by American Starling Burgess in 1913, the same architect who also signed Ranger, Rainbow and other famous America’s Cuppers. She races in the same class as Olympian but they are much faster than us in light air. I found both boats in a pretty bad state in the USA, had them restored. When she was launched the boat was called Onda III, but a banker from New York got her in 1926 after a winning poker match, so she was called Chips…”
Fresh from a victory in the Régates Royales in Cannes last week is Linnet, a 1905 NYYC30 gaff sloop designed by Nathanael Herreshoff, helmed by Brazilian sailing star Torben Grael.
“This year I was invited to sail The Centenary Trophy with Linnet. I love classic yachting, I own a 6 Metre from 1912 and being here is a nice opportunity to see so many wonderful boats.” Said the multiple Olympic champion from Brazil. “I’ve learned to sail on this kind of boats, the one I have now used to be my grandfather’s and she won a silver medal in 1920 in Stockholm. Unfortunately, we haven’t so many in Brazil.”
Dating from 1912 and also debuting in 2017 at the GYC Centenary Trophy is gaff sloop Tilly XV, the boat that was built in Germany for Prince Heinrich Von Preussen, the brother of Kaiser Wilhelm II, a Sonder class racer that won the Kiel Week in the very same year she was launched.
Past winners will also be back to fight for their title: the 2016 champion, USA’s flagged NY50 Spartan (1912) and 2014 and 2015 winners Olympian (1913) and Oriole (1905). As will do some aficionados of the event like fore and aft cutter Eva (1906); gaff cutter Kelpie (1903), Swedish built Marga (1910); Bermudan sloop Mignon (1905); last year’s 120th birthday child Nan of Fife (1896); the 8M I.R. Nin (1913); and the French flagged 3 tonner Phoebus (1903).
This year, during the prize-giving night both the Centenary Trophy and the Centenary Award Silver Bowl, the Centenarian of the Year 2017 prize that has been awarded to Jolie Brise for the very first time last April in London, will be on display.