Please select your home edition
Edition
SailX 728x90

Cowes Week and the Rolex Fastnet - Two great events rolled into one

by Sue Pelling on 18 Jun 2013
Dunkerque Plaisance Team Sue Pelling http://www.royalcorinthian.co.uk
In one year’s time, when two of the world’s iconic sailing events like Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week and the Rolex Fastnet Race follow on from one another, it is not surprising to see many competitors grab the opportunity to participate in both events.

Although the events are not directly connected, and are run totally independently, there is a natural historic bond between the two. The events feed off each other with many of those competing in the Rolex Fastnet Race, using Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week as a good warm up, while those participating in Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week often see the Fastnet as an opportunity to extend their sailing holiday.

Entries to Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week during ‘odd’ years when the Fastnet takes place generally sees an increase in entries, particularly international entries. This year is no exception because to date almost 20 per cent are from overseas, as far afield as Australia and the USA.

There are many high profile professional teams signed up including Geoff Boettcher’s Secret Mens Business 3.5 (Australia) and Peter Vroon with Tonnerre De Breskens 3 (Netherlands). However, one of the most interesting overseas pro entries is the 100ft yacht Esimit Europa 2. This sailing team, which sails under the flag of the European Union, and competes for the Slovenian Sailing Federation and Yacht Club de Monaco, has Jochen Schümann (German triple Olympic gold medallist, and double America’s Cup sailor aboard Alinghi) on board as skipper, with Alberto Bolzan at the helm. After achieving 19 fastest times at all the races they’ve attended so far since 2010 and setting five new course records including line honours and course record in 2012 at the Giraglia Rolex Cup, this team looks set to challenge for the big prizes at both Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week and the Fastnet Race this year.

Commenting on the forthcoming events on The Solent, Igor Sim?i?, owner of Esimit Europa 2 said: 'We are eager to repeat our success outside the Mediterranean for the first time. Three inshore races at Cowes Week will serve as a great introduction to one of the season’s highlights, Rolex Fastnet Race, where we’ll try to take line honours among the monohulls.'

As well as the numerous professional teams taking part in both events, there is also a healthy number of club sailors keen to pit their wits against the cream of the big boat racers.

Philippe Bourgeois, sailing with his French team on his A35 Dunkerque Plaisance-Gill race team who won their class at Cowes Week in 2010 and took part in the 2003 Fastnet Race, says Cowes Week and the Fastnet Race hold many happy memories. 'They are two magic events during two holiday weeks. We have no professional sailors on board, just friends with competitive spirits who enjoy the exciting challenge of both events. One of the best experiences at Cowes Week is having the pleasure of passing the legendary Royal Yacht Squadron line each day with so many good competitors. The Solent is so magic for racing, and the organisation of the event is amazing.'

For some, racing Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week and the Rolex Fastnet Race are lifelong ambitions. Tillmann Frank from Germany who owns an 1982-built Albin Stratus – Sagitta – says when he was a boy during the 60s and 70s a yacht from his sailing club (Flensburger Segel-Club) often raced on the Solent, and participated in the Fastnet Race. He said he was fascinated by the challenge: 'My dream was to sail my own boat to the Fastnet Rock one day, so last winter I decided the time had come. Because we were travelling such a long way across the Baltic Sea and back, we decided to participate in Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week too, so we are really looking forward to our extended holiday in the UK.'
Cowes Week website
Zhik Isotak Ocean 660x82Wildwind 2016 660x82T Clewring - Generic

Related Articles

52 Super Series – Puerto Portals Sailing Week – Bouncing back on Day 1
Quantum Racing pretty much carried on from where they left off in Sardinia earlier this month, ferociously consistent Quantum Racing pretty much carried on from where they left off in Sardinia earlier this month, ferociously consistent and proving the value of every point gained on each race course. After their ninth and tenth places respectively at the Audi Settimana delle Bocche Vladimir Liubomirov’s Bronenosec and Takashi Okura’s Sled both bounced back with a strong opening day to the third regatta of the five
Posted today at 7:04 pm
52 Super Series – Puerto Portals Sailing Week – Races 1 and 2 images
Photographer Max Ranchi has provided this gallery of images from races one and two Photographer Max Ranchi has provided this gallery of images from races one and two
Posted today at 4:59 pm
New challenges for Oman Air at halfway stage of Extreme Sailing Series
Race organisers have extended the race area on the River Elbe to cater for the higher speeds of the new foiling GC32s. Race organisers have extended the race area on the River Elbe to cater for the higher speeds of the new foiling GC32s but Oman Air skipper Morgan Larson says avoiding errors will still be the biggest challenge if they are to extend their overall lead with their third Act victory of the season.
Posted today at 4:35 pm
Rolex Swan Cup – A noble approach to sailing
Mention the Swan Cup to any sailor and the feelings evoked are common – great competition in an enviable environment Mention the Swan Cup to any sailor and the feelings evoked are common – great competition in an enviable environment, a prevailing spirit of fair play and an opportunity to sail yachts renowned for their grace, enduring appeal and rich heritage.
Posted today at 3:41 pm
Comanche's Trans-Atlantic record attempt hits soft spot
Light air zones threaten record-breaking pace as 100ft yacht charges across mid-Atlantic With 1,548 nautical miles left to sail to the finish of the Transatlantic record (as of 08:30 GMT today) at Lizard Point, UK, Comanche remains on course to break Mari Cha IV’s 2003 record. Stan Honey, Comanche navigator, noted this morning: Chilly here. Set the A-3 Gennaker to go deeper. Very flat water. Smooth sailing. Not much wind down low near the cold water. Visibility 10meters.
Posted today at 12:13 pm
World of Sailing in review - July 2016 edition - Round the Island Race
World Sailing present their July 2016 video magazine featuring the Round the Island race World Sailing present their July 2016 video magazine featuring the Round the Island race (around the Isle of Wight) and preview several personalities and aspects of the upcoming Rio Olympics
Posted today at 11:50 am
America’s Cup World Series – More final day images by Ingrid Abery
Ingrid Abery has provided this gallery of images from final day Ingrid Abery has provided this gallery of images from final day
Posted today at 11:37 am
America’s Cup World Series – Final race day images by Ingrid Abery
Ingrid Abery provided this gallery of images from final day Ingrid Abery provided this gallery of images from final day
Posted today at 11:21 am
Panerai British Classic Week comes to a spectacular conclusion
With the sailing complete it was time for the crews to don their finery and enjoy the last big party of the regatta The only class winner still to be decided was Class four where John Mulcahy’s 1961 Kim Holman Stella Estrella held a narrow three-point lead over Jonathan and Scilla Dyke’s 1938 Robert Clark Bermudan sloop Cereste.
Posted today at 10:50 am
Anatoliy Loginov wins the Gazprom Dragon European Championship
The “Big Dragon week” in St.Petersburg YC started in the first ten days of June 2016 with the Silver cup practice race The only day that saw one race was the first when with five minutes left to day’s cancellation the jury decided to send the fleet to race and they gained a perfect race under perfect conditions.
Posted today at 10:12 am