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One Ton Cup video emerges from 1974 OTC sailed off Torquay

by Sail-World.com 22 Nov 2021 16:24 PST
One Ton Cup 1974 - Torquay UK © George Stead archives

An 8mm video of the 1974 One Ton Cup, sailed off Torquay, has emerged in Ireland, discovered by well known Irish sailmaker Jonny McWilliam and has been digitised by his son Jamie.

Written and narrated by the doyen of yachting journalists, Bob Fisher, the video gives an excellent insight into the way offshore racing was conducted prior to the era of the full-time professional sailor. It features many of the well-known sailors of the sport - Richard Creagh-Osbourne, John Oakley, Hugh Coveney, Ron Holland, Jeremy Rogers and others.

The series won by Gumboots (UK), a Contessa 35, designed by Doug Peterson, built and skippered by Jeremy Rogers with High Tension, skippered by her builder George Stead (UK) second and and Hati IV, a charter boat also a Contessa 35 sailed by Chris Bouzaid (NZ), placed third, in the 34 boat fleet.

Golden Apple (IRL), owned and skippered by Hugh Coveney, with McWilliams' sails features prominently in the video, and was one of the pre-series favourites.

Sailed in boats of around 35ft to the IOR Rule the One Ton Cup was a level rating series ie there was no restrictions on dimensions, but there was a maximum rating allowed for the series.

The series was decided in Gumboots favour by a single point margin from High Tension, after High Tension won the last (long offshore) race, but was unable to get another competitor between her and Gumboots, which would have given High Tension the win.

Several of the boats including the series winner Gumboots stood by a cruising yacht which caught fire and set off a flare. Eventually all six crew were taken aboard Gumboots who finished the race and was awarded redress for the time lost in the incident.


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