Since 1826 Cowes Week has been a key part in the British sporting summer calendar and is one of the UK's longest running and most successful sporting events. It now stages up to forty daily races for between 800 and 1,000 boats and is the largest sailing regatta of its kind in the world.
A day of champagne sailing at Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week 2013
Although the regatta is almost 190 years old, it is only in more recent times that the Week has become an integrated series of races organised by a single body. During the post-war era, each day of racing was run by a different Cowes or Solent mainland club with every club printing their own sailing instructions and running their own programme of racing for the day. It was not until 1964 that, on the suggestion of HRH The Duke of Edinburgh (a regular competitor and Admiral of the Royal Yacht Squadron), Cowes Combined Clubs was formed to run and organise the regatta, with the Royal Yacht Squadron line becoming the universal start line and with one set of sailing instructions and racing marks for the Week.
In 2014, Cowes Combined Clubs is proud to celebrate the 50thanniversary of coordinated race management at Cowes Week and to mark the occasion, the CCC Anniversary Trophy is being introduced. Peter Dickson, Chairman of Cowes Combined Clubs and Cowes Week Limited explains: 'It seems fitting to introduce a new team trophy in celebration of the team efforts of our ten member clubs in successfully running the Cowes Week racing programme for the last 50 years. The event has evolved enormously in that time and we look forward to continuing to serve competitors in the best possible way into the next 50 years and beyond. The CCC Anniversary Trophy is a painting that has been commissioned on behalf of CCC from local yachtsman and artist, Mike Till, which depicts HMY Britannia off Cowes with HRH The Duke of Edinburgh’s yachts Coweslip, Bluebottle and Bloodhound under sail in the foreground. This perpetual trophy will be awarded in 2014 as an interclub team trophy with the original painting held on the premises of the winning club.'
The introduction of the Trophy is reflected in a recently published amendment to the Notice of Regatta. Teams of three boats can be nominated by any sailing or yacht club to represent them, and can be from across any class or combination of classes (although boats may only race for one team). Team nominations are welcomed by 1700 on Friday 1 August and must be made in writing to the Regatta Office.
Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week takes place from 2 – 9 August and http://www.aamcowesweek.co.uk/web/code/php/main_c.php?map=cw14&ui=cw1&style=std&override=§ion=takingpart&page=entries!entries!new are encouraged before midnight on Monday 26 May which is when the early bird discounted entry period ends.