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One Ton Champion, Rainbow II arrives back in Auckland

by Alan Sefton on 25 Jul 2012
Rainbow II is on the road for the short trip to the Viaduct area Alan Sefton

The legendary Rainbow II arrived home yesterday aboard the Maersk Brani.

Boat Haulage Ltd moved her from the wharf to the Pier 21 Marine Centre in Westhaven Drive before taking her to a temporary home at the Boat Haulage premises in Beach Haven Road. She will remain at Boat Haulage for a couple of weeks before going into the Percy Vos boatshed, in Hamer Street (in the Wynyard Quarter) where she will be completely restored by Max Carter, the man who built her in 1967, and his partner Alan Wright.

The 10.97-metres (36ft) Sparkman & Stephens design sloop, in the mid to late 1960s, launched New Zealand into international offshore racing when she won the 1967 Whangarei-Noumea race, the 1967 Sydney-Hobart classic and then, in 1969, the famed One Ton Cup.

She was then sold to Bermuda where she has been based for the last 45 years, but now has been reacquired by original owner and skipper Chris Bouzaid who has donated her to the newly established Maritime Museum Foundation in Auckland.

After the restoration work is complete, Rainbow II will be displayed publicly – originally by the Classic Yacht Charitable Trust in the Wynyard Quarter then, hopefully, in the Voyager National Maritime Museum in the Viaduct Harbour.

Bouzaid, who currently lives in Maine on the east coast of the United States, plans to sail the restored Rainbow in Auckland on the 50th anniversary of her One Ton Cup win (that would be 21 July, 2019) with a crew comprising as many of the originals sailors as possible.

All shipping for Rainbow II is being organized by Bill Speedy, of Oceanbridge Shipping Ltd, and all road transportation is being provided by Bob Wylie of Boat Haulage Ltd.

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