Although it may not suit everyone, the dates are earlier than usual to two weeks before Cowes Week to avoid a week of Spring Tides.
We have one major anniversary - the Queen Victoria Jubilee Cup will be presented to the Sunbeams in their ninetieth year.
We are also working to expand the Classic Revival Fleet as we had considerable interest last year and had to split the fleet. So, if you have a classic keelboat and can't get more of the fleet to come, or maybe just a one-off, you can still join in. You'll find it really is a great event. It will be a great opportunity for the many one-design classes from around the country to come together once a year. In the past, almost every major yacht club has commissioned their own one-design. Many of these normally only have the opportunity to sail in small local fleets based around the few remaining boats and enthusiastic owners and some fleets are so fragmented that they have little opportunity to sail together. On the whole, they are fairly easily moved and mainland facilities have been organised for launching and the crossing to Cowes.
This will be the Sixth event, now simply called Cowes Classics Week and incorporating the Metre & Classic Keelboat Regatta. Cowes has become the centre for classic sailing in Northern Europe, consistent with its heritage and will bring to Cowes the largest fleet of classic boats ever assembled in the UK.
A Note on Eligibility
What makes a classic boat? Debate rages continuously and will possibly never be resolved. From a practical standpoint, it is the provenance of the class that defines its classic status - with both one design classes and development classes new boats will constantly be built, but the design or rule will have been established at the outset. The acceptability of a new class will be determined by the Class Captain's Steering Group. This means that the Regatta is open to both old and new boats of an eligible class. Having said that, some classes may opt to attend with old boats only (however that is defined by the class) as these are often uncompetitive in regular events and this Regatta provides something 'special' just for them. This is a decision for the class officers and the Regatta organisers will endeavour to accomodate the wishes of any class.
Background to the Event
The Metre Regatta evolved from the successful Centenary Regatta for the International Rule held in Cowes during July 2007 at which 80 Metre boats attended from places as far apart as Australia and the USA. There had been a latent demand from the keelboats for a similar event, now fulfilled.
Fleet racing will be organised for individual classes where numbers are sufficient. Otherwise, a class result may be provided in a mixed fleet and handicap racing provided for others.
Following on from the Regatta, The Household Division Yacht Club hold a one day regatta every year on the Saturday before Cowes Week followed by the Royal Yacht Squadron Regatta on Sunday - traditional warm-up races for Cowes Week - see details.
It is hoped that more fleets may adopt the event as a regular or occasional slot in their calendar although the format is designed to enable all-comers. Class Captains are encouraged to contact David Elliott – see contacts.