Race to start for the Superyacht Cup Antigua

Monday, 8 December 2008

Several of the yachts expected at the third edition of the Superyacht Cup Antigua next week have been battling unseasonal headwinds and heavy seas as they sail from the eastern seaboard of the United States and from Europe heading to English Harbour for next week’s regatta from 9-12th Dec.

Last years' winner of the Antigua Superyacht Cup, Sojana is still at sea on their way across the Atlantic after experiencing bad weather south of the Canaries. Captain Marc Fitzgerald reported that they are still several days out of Antigua but very determined to make it for the first race.

Ironically at English Harbour, conditions are perfect this week for the annual Antigua Charter Show, now in its 47th year. Over 70 sailing and motor yachts are on display to the worlds' leading yacht brokers.

Signe the 35m Bruce King ketch, who arrived late on Wednesday night after a particularly rough delivery from New England, made an impressive transformation into 'show mode' and was ready on the dock the following day. The Signe crew will finish the Charter Show and immediately prepare for racing and join The Superyacht Cup. Representatives from Hickley Yacht Services, who undertook a major refit on Signe earlier this year will be joining the crew and sailing for the three day regatta.

Already here well in time for The Superyacht Cup is the meticulously prepared Dubois designed 44m ketch Timoneer, taking part in her 6th Superyacht Cup regatta.

The Superyacht Cup Antigua is run through the Antigua Yacht Club; the different course options are currently being considered to set a varied race course off the south of the island for the three days of racing. The event will adopt the popular ‘Bucket Rating’ system for the first time, in a bid to create a consistency with the ratings between the four major annual superyacht regattas, the St Barths and Newport Bucket regattas, and the Superyacht Cup Palma and Antigua events. The yachts will be given individual start times with the aim of finishing the fleet close together in a ‘pursuit style’ format.

Presenting Sponsor of this years’ Superyacht Cup Antigua is the Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority, the sponsorship being part of a global promotion of the Capital of the United Arab Emirates and its active marine leisure initiatives. Abu Dhabi will host the first Abu Dhabi Yacht Show next March for yachts over 30m.

Other sponsors of the event include Camper & Nicholsons International, Slam, Future Fibres, Varadero Palma, North Sails, OYS, Pantaenius, Ship Equip, Lyman Morse, Perini Navi, Atollvic, Hinckley Yacht Services, Valencia Yacht Base, ShowBoats and Antigua Rigging.