News

Etchells Southern Area Championship

On the weekend of the 13th and 14th April, the Cowes Etchells fleet competed in the Royal Thames Yacht Club’s Southern Area Championships, an excellently run and closely fought over regatta. The race committee perfectly took advantage of the conditions, with an average wind range of 17-24 knots, getting in 3 intense windward leeward courses per day.

Of the 11 boats in the fleet, 3 were youth teams following on from the 2019 Royal London Yacht Club’s Etchells Youth Academy trials. William Bedford’s Royal London team, having won a race, were the first youth team, followed by Robby Boyd’s Royal Lymington team and Ollie Grogono’s Royal Thames team. A further 4 Etchells were crewed by sailors that have previously been involved in the youth programme. Indeed of the 38 competitors on the water, 27 were from our youth academy either sailing a youth boat or crewing for owners. Only one boat had no youths.


With the competition for the event title going down to the very last day, congratulations go out to the winner, Hamish Calder in Exabyte, and runner up David Franks in Strait Dealer. Meanwhile, Charlie Manzoni performed excellently in Ice, emerging first Corinthian. Perhaps the greatest performance, however, was that of the Greig City academy and their sailing without an onboard coach.

Next up is the Royal London Yacht Club’s Spring series regatta on the 27 and 28th April, where two more youth boats – representing the Royal Dart and Oxford University – will be joining the action.

5 teams granted boats after 2019 RLYC Etchells Class Youth Trials

Following 4 open training camps run during February and March 2019, the Royal London Yacht Club ran the trials regatta on the weekend of March 30/31

Saturday’s conditions were difficult allowing only 2 races. However, Sunday was near to perfect with 15 to 17 knots of breeze and sunshine, enabling race officer Jong Long and his team to run a further 5 windward/leeward races

Deserving winners of the regatta were the The Royal Lymington Yacht Club team, led by Robby Boyd (bow/jib trim), Hattie Rogers (helm), Max Crowe (mainsheet/tactics), and Henry Collison (spinnaker trim/ navigation). Max and Hattie are racing Etchells for the first time, whilst both Robby and Henry sailed last year in some events with a youth team

A superb second in the series was the Greig City Academy team 2 albeit with an owner’s representative on board.

This year, the Academy has granted 5 boats. Teams will not only get the use of a fully-funded Etchells for this year’s Cowes racing season, but will also be funded to compete in the Etchells Class Nationals, Europeans and Lendy Cowes Week 2019 The successful teams are:

1. Royal Lymington Yacht Club
2. Greig City Academy
3. Royal Thames Yacht Club
4. The Royal Dart Yacht Club
5. Oxford University Yacht Club


The Etchells Academy has been running for over 9 years and has seen more than of 600 youth sailors participating in the training camps and trials.

The driving force and primary supporter behind the Academy is David Franks, Cowes Class Captain. Other supporters include Cowes Yacht Haven, Red Funnel, the Royal London Yacht Club, Royal Thames Yacht Club, North Sails, Spinlock and several present and past owners in the Cowes Fleet including the Fleet’s Admiral, Ted Fort. The coaching and administration is superbly managed by Solent and Etchells guru David Bedford and Nicky Bedford.

David launched this initiative to encourage young sailors into the class and is rightly credited with keeping the Cowes Etchells Fleet buoyant.

Teams who are granted boats commit to Cowes Class racing calendar for the whole season, and many continue to sail within the class providing excellent crew options for owners.

Some of the sailors who were unsuccessful in this year’s trials have already found crewing positions on other boats.

The dates for the 2020 camps and trials will be announced shortly. We welcome sailors from sailing/yacht clubs, associations and individual team entries.

Sailors need to be between the ages of 18 and 25 (25 or under on January 1st 2020)

Applications should be made to David Bedford: Bedfordd@hotmail.co.uk Any questions, please contact David by email or 0780 8400008

Lawrie Smith 2018 Etchells European Champion

The 2018 Open Etchells European Champion is Lawrie Smith racing Colin (Glandore Harbour YC ) with Gonçalo Ribeiro, Ella Bennett and Pedro Andrade. The 2018 Corinthian European Etchells Champion is a team from the Royal London YC Etchells Youth Academy, skippered by Will Bedford, racing Shamal with Fraser Woodley, Nik Froud, and Henry Collison.

During the eight races, held in a variety of conditions, three teams led during the regatta. Peter Duncan won the first two races, but Lawrie Smith fought back, and was top of the leaderboard after six races. Going into the last race, Ante Razmilovic was leading by a single point, with all three teams vying for the European title.

Lawrie Smith won the 2018 Open Etchells European Champion in the very last race, after strong competition from Ante Razmilovic’s Swedish Blue (YCCS), and American skipper Peter Duncan, racing Mans Best Friend, which were second and third respectively.


On the last run in the final race, Lawrie Smith team came from behind to pass both Swedish Blue and Mans Best Friend to secure the championship by a single point.“Thank you to the Royal London and all of the race management team, we have had great racing,” commented Lawrie Smith, “To all my team well done, and sorry about the last run Ante, he was winning the regatta until then but he didn’t!”

“A high level of competition with top sailors, especially from Peter Duncan and Ante Razmilovic, who pushed us all the way, ” commented Pedro Andrade tactician for Lawrie Smith. “We had a shocker in Race 7, and in Race 8 we didn’t have a good start, so it wasn’t looking good. On the last run, we decided to stay on the starboard gybe, and the competition gybed away from us. The wind was dropping, and we saw a bit of a pressure from the left with a favourable shift. We were patient, held our nerve, and it did pay. We managed to sail around them, after rounding the bottom gate, we were with the tide and pulled away for the beat to the finish.”

Will Bedford’s team have all come through the Royal London YC Etchells Youth Academy, and in a strong field of experienced Etchells sailors, topped the Corinthian ranking for the 2018 Etchells European Championship. “The Royal London Etchells Youth Academy is a great programme and you are sailing against great people, and we are privileged to be here.” commented Will Bedford.

Runner up in the Corinthian Class was Rob Goddard’s Stampede (RYA/CCYC) and in third place was Maarten Jamin’s El Toro (WSV Hoorn).

Congratulations should go to all the teams who made the podium in a highly competitive fleet, including Chris Hampton (Royal Brighton Yacht Club) who scored a 6-1-2 on the last day to take fourth in the Open Division. Also making the podium: Marci Pocci (Royal Hong Kong YC), Graham Sunderland (Royal London YC), Peter Rogers (Royal Lymington YC), and Shaun Frohlich (Royal Southern YC).

For more information including the full reults: yachtscoring.com/emenu.cfm?eID=6018

Follow the Cowes Etchells Fleet Facebook page: facebook.com/groups/etchellscowes

Open Etchells European Championship 24 – 27 August, 2017

Organised by the Royal London Yacht Club, in conjunction with the Cowes Etchells Fleet.

Nineteen teams representing nine yacht clubs from around the world will compete at the 2018 Etchells European Championship, hosted by the Royal London Yacht Club in conjunction with the Cowes Etchells Fleet. Over the Bank Holiday weekend, 24-27 August, up to eight races are scheduled in the Central Solent to decide the Open and Corinthian 2018 Etchells European champions.

Outstanding performers from the 2018 British Etchells Championship will be in action including the open winner, Lawrie Smith with Alfie (Glandore Harbour YC), and the Corinthian Champion Ante Razmilovic with Swedish Blue (YCCS). Runner-up and third place for the 2018 British Championship will also be racing, Marco Pocci with Les Freaks Sont Chics/Bon Vivant (Royal Hong Kong YC) and Peter Rogers with Highlife (Royal London YC). American skipper, Peter Duncan will be in action with Mans Best Friend, and 2011 and 2012 Etchells European Champion, Shaun Frohlich with Exabyte 5 (Royal Southern YC). Cowes local Graham Sunderland will be driving Strait Dealer (Royal London YC), and from Australia Chris Hampton will be in action with Tango (Royal Brighton YC).

Four youth teams, which have all learnt their skills through the Royal London Etchells Youth Academy will be in action. Ellie Cumpsty will skipper an all-women team racing Mano, William Bedford will skipper Shamal , Ted Blowers will be racing Sumo, and Andrew Wishart will be racing Ziggy.

Racing for the 2018 Open Etchells European Championship is scheduled to start at noon Friday 24th August, and conclude on Monday 27th August with a Prize Giving at Cowes Yacht Haven after racing.

For more information including the entry list:
yachtscoring.com/emenu.cfm?eID=6018

Follow the 2018 Etchells European Championship from the Cowes Etchells Fleet Facebook page:
facebook.com/groups/etchellscowes

The Etchells Gertrude Cup 2018, run by the Royal Thames Yacht Club

The Etchells Gertrude Cup was 4 days of intense racing with 12 races scheduled and, despite the predominantly high pressure sitting over the UK, was successfully completed. By the final day, 4 boats were in contention for overall victory.

Initially the regatta was reliant on sea breezes to get the racing under way, and somehow PRO Phil Hagan seemed to predict its arrival with remarkable accuracy, arranging for the fleet to be towed to the race course with no breeze in the Solent, only for it to arrive as the fleet did.

Day 1, in breezes of never more than 12 kts, saw the Royal London’s Mark Lees win the leader’s Red Spinnaker. Lees used the strong ebb on the left-hand side of the course to good advantage with a first and a third in the 2-race day. However, the day wasn’t without incident as the strong ebb tide for one race changed the spreader mark into the windward mark, and only race leader Mark Lees spotted this resulting, as the fleet tried to pinch up to the “new” mark, in 3 boats ended up having to do penalty turns.

Day 2, after visiting yachtsman Pat Voss from the Royal Perth Yacht club easily won the first race, things didn’t go his way and it was the combined GBR/USA team skippered by Ted Blowers who won the Boat of the Day. The team’s wind calls and precise gybing saw Blowers move through the pack to give them 3 podium positions out of the days 4 races. Unfortunately, this was not enough to give Blowers the coveted Red Spinnaker, as Lees had achieved consistently good results in all 4 races

Day 3 saw the visiting USA youth team win their second race of the series, but the day’s stars were the Greig City Academy team helmed by Montel Fagan-Jordan, who scored 2 firsts and a second. Their 2nd first included a man overboard recovery, as just after rounding the bottom gate in first place one of the crew hiked too hard, and it was only the quick response of tactician Matt Reid pulling him in as he passed the stern of the boat that meant they only lost 2 places, but on the down-wind leg recovered their first place to win by less than half a boat length. The Series leader suffered gear failure but, with 2 discards now in place after 10 races, were able to maintain the leader’s Red Spinnaker into the last day.

Day 4 – final day – saw at last a true gradient breeze and conditions more akin to the Solent – a South Westerly at 12 Kts that slowly built to 18 Its, variable cloud cover giving good wind shifts – a race officer’s nightmare, yet Phil Hagen still managed to put on 3 fair races in the now more challenging conditions as the seas started to build. 4 teams could potentially win the event, but Lees needed a bad day to throw it away, and that he nearly did, but such was the overall quality and competitive nature of the fleet that none of the contenders could maintain 3 good race results together. Without doubt though, the top boat of the day was Annabelle Vose’s all-girl crew from the Royal Southern Yacht Club who scored only 9 points from the day’s 3 races with 2 podium positions.

Overall winner was helm Mark Lees’ Royal London’s team skippered by Will Bedford, ahead of USA Youth team Blue, Sean Cornell. Cornell won the Youth’s and Corinthian Trophy, a prize he was delighted to take back to the States. Lees said in his acceptance speech that teams coming to Cowes from around the world make this a special event, both on and off the water.

A Truly Golden Experience

Ainslie / Simmer and Scott racing Etchells in the Solent.

One of the great things about sailing is the old adage that you get to play on the same course as Tiger Woods. It’s an idea which most of us are aware of, the dream of getting on the course with the best. But unlike golf, in sailing it it really is true, as the Solent Etchells fleet will find out on June 23rd and 24th when one of the greatest collections of gold medals and Americas cup wins in history will settle themselves in an Etchells and do battle with the weekend warriors for the Royal Yacht Squadron’s Sir Kenneth Preston trophy.

Among the fleet there have been a fair few boats called The Trio based on the fact that it was traditionally a three-man boat (now sailed by a lot of smaller crews 4-up) but it is hard to imagine a more successful trio than Ben Ainslie, Giles Scott and Grant Simmer who will make up this trio. Between them they have five Olympic Gold medals, one Silver, five Americas cup wins as either sailor or design coordinator and an astonishing eight Finn World Championships

The Trio will line up in perhaps the Solent’s most competitive one-design class, although it should be noted that Ainslie and Simmer have both finished on the podium at previous Etchells world Championships so it’s not exactly all new to them.

For details on how to join the fleet or for charter options for Sir Kenneth Preston Trophy contact David Franks davidfranks80@gmail.com +44 7768 063868

British Etchells National Championship 2018

Any time a boat gets to discard a second place in its winning scoreline, it suggests a walkover, but in the case of the 2018 British Etchells National Championship Lawrie Smith and his crew of Richard Parslow / Will Heritage and Gonçalo Ribeiro only took the championship on the last beat of the last race. In that race they had moved from well back in the fleet to eventual first place, snatching the title from Andy Beadsworth (Marco Pocci / Ben Cornish (sailing under the HKG sail number of Marco)) who for most of the last race had the destiny of the title in his own hands.

These two were head and shoulders above the rest of the 19 boat fleet, Smith finishing with six points, Beadsworth with eight while Peter Rogers / Neil Jaffa Harrison and Ben Cooper finished an extremely creditable third overall but with a rather distant 20 points in total.

Race one was sailed in a very light north westerly breeze with a strong cross tide from the east and the race was won by Tom Abrey/ Bruno van Dyck and Matt Reid. Unusually for the team on Jolly Roger however, this was the only time they saw the front all week and their regatta was challenging from the next race with an OCS leading them scoring a DFL in 19th.

Smith took second, Peter Rogers 3rd and defending National champion David Franks a solid 4th to kick off the defence of his British Championship title.


Race two was away quickly with the Lawrie Smith juggernaut starting to get rolling and taking the bullet. Ante Razmilovic (Brian Hammersley, Andrew Mills) who are always at the front of this fleet took second while Andy Beadsworth (Marco Pocci / Ben Cornish) was 3rd.

After an OCS in race 1 visiting Aussies Iain Murray / Grant Simmer (now resident in the UK as General Manager for the now renamed Ben Ainslie / Ineos Team UK America’s Cup team) and Steve “Mothie” Jarvin took 4th.

At this stage it was anyone’s game but with two more races held on the first day due to light wind forecasts for later in the weekend the complexion of the regatta changed in the following 3 hours. Andy Beadsworth and Lawrie Smith locked up the front row in both races. Beadsworth took both, Smith second in both and they put themselves a few boat lengths ahead of the fleet in the big picture.

Nobody else even got close. Iain Murray had a couple of 4’s, Razmilovic had a three and a black flag disqualification, current J70 world champion Peter Duncan had a 5 and a BFD (his second of the weekend!) while Shaun Fröhlich who has won this title before added two 13ths onto his earlier 5th place to fall out of contention.

Worthy of mention at this stage of the regatta however was the RLYC Youth academy team of Owen Bowerman / Morgan Peach / Charlotte Hooper and Matt Whitfield who had a score line that read consistently well with 9, 6, 9 before they too fell victim to the black flag in race 4.

While Saturdays NW breeze had built all day so that by the end of race 4 it was blowing 16 to 18 knots, Sunday dawned very light and the forecast for Monday was also looking very tricky for racing.

After a long delay the fleet set off for the Bramble Bank in a soft 5 to 7 knot SW for what the Royal London YC PRO Gill Smith hoped might be two races. The dominant factor however was the tide, which was a building flood from the west making for long beats. The first race (under a black flag which had done for Razmilovic who had his second of the regatta) saw a massive split with half the boats clearly wanting the right (and being willing to start late at the committee boat and tack to get there) while the other half started further left and seemed content to search for better breeze, ignoring the theoretically stronger adverse tide to the left. In the end the left won out big time with all the leaders coming from that side. No one seemed to know if there was more wind that side or if perhaps the tide hadn’t perhaps turned on the left quite yet. There may have been a bit of positive ebb tide still on the left. Beadsworth and Smith were amongst this group. The back markers were saved however by the building tide which picked up the spreader mark and swept it off towards Portsmouth to the extent the PRO Smith had to abandon the race.

With the clock running down fast another start was run and the debate was again, go left or go right. Most of the same people made the same decisions and more or less the left won again. But not by as much, and with the windward mark on the move this time rather than the spreader mark carnage broke out at the top mark when it became clear that you couldn’t lay the spreader from the windward mark without another tack!! This really shook up the fleet.

Beadsworth was top 3 but Smith was buried until this point. Your correspondent can’t recall all of the shenanigans but Smith did get up to 5th as a result. Beadsworth was still in the virtual lead overall and held that down the run. With the left having worked every beat so far most boats took the right hand gate (looking downwind) and looked to protect that side. But the tide had only been building across the course so this was starting to be higher risk.

Smith split and went right up the beat along with Murray Chapples (crewed by his 10 year old son Zac !) who had gone right every beat. They rounded 5th and 6th and with every passing moment the boats on the left – now on port and trying to get back to the middle – were bow down and looked in trouble. Beadsworth was first to spot the danger (but apparently didn’t know that Smith was the boat in the far right hand corner) so he tacked over and headed right but the further he came back to the middle the worse the situation looked as it became clear to him that his only competition for the title was the boat now on starboard with a right-hand puff crossing everybody. Having had the championship in his grasp the fleet headed up the last beat with the right looking better and better.

Luckily for the group on the left there weren’t many boats to the right so other than Smith and Chapples who moved up, the order didn’t change too much, although the fleet did compress and Beadsworth saw the title ripped from his grasp.

So ended a very high scoring regatta with only the first two boats able to show any consistency. In fact only three boats in the whole fleet managed to stay in single figures all regatta.

Lawrie Smith is the 2018 British Etchells National Champion, just reward for his hard work over the past couple of years since joining fleet and another title on the CV of one of Britain’s top boat racers while Ante Razmilovic took the Corinthian title. — Written by Laurence Mead

British Open & National Championship

The Etchells British Open & National Championship, hosted by the Royal London YC.

There is always a lot of great boat racing going on around the Solent, with battles taking place in a wide variety of classes, from big boats to small boats, and club racers to world champions. This coming May Bank Holiday will be no exception with 60 J-Boats battling it out in the J Cup from the Island Sailing Club, as well as the RORC fleet heading offshore to Plymouth and back.

Possibly the most competitive racing, however, will be in the Etchells class who will be competing for their British Open & National Championship, hosted by the Royal London YC. The entry list is stacked with awesome CVs and whoever wins will have to beat the very best. It’s also a very international regatta with competitors from Australia, Hong Kong and the USA flying in, with one crew coming down from Scotland as well. 

On the basis of local knowledge and the form book, a possible favourite is Lawrie Smith. Smith has been winning World Championships for 35 years, in his early days in the 505 and Fireball class where he regularly locked horns with current Etchells world champion Steve Benjamin. Smith was 2nd in the Miami Etchells series over the winter (Benjamin won!) has an excellent crew and is one of the finest helmsman in the world. Sailing an Etchells fast upwind is never easy but Smith squeezes out those last 2° of height all the time and is incredibly consistent. Smith has also previously won the Dragon World Championship and in a nice piece of symmetry current Dragon World Champion (and 2007 Etchells World Champion). Andy Beadsworth will be making his second appearance in the class this year as well. 


There are a number of local boats who on their day also have the capability to win the championship, not least of which is David Franks the current British National Champion with local guru Graham Sunderland. David has been an avid Etchells sailor for the past 10 years and has honed his campaign to the point where he is always a genuine contender. Last year Franks won the British Nationals while Marco Pocci and Marty Kaye from Hong Kong won the Open title and they are back to shoot for the title this year and returning again in August for the Etchells European Championship.

When it comes to big names in international sailing, however, none gets much bigger than Grant Simmer. When your CV goes back to being navigator on Australia 2 in the winning 1983 Americas Cup campaign it may be hard to reach higher but Simmer went on to a senior leadership role with Alinghi – winning two America’s cups and then to being General Manager when Oracle pulled off their unbelievable 9-8 comeback to beat New Zealand in the 2013 Cup in San Francisco. On the water, he has fitted in multiple top 10 results at the Etchells Worlds including  8th in the 2017 championship. Simmer is now CEO of Ineos Team UK for the next America’s Cup. 

In terms of current form Peter Duncan from the USA is the reining J70 World Champion, current Rolex USA Yachtsman of the Year, current USA midwinter Etchells Champion and knows the Solent well having raced here in the world Championships, as well as winning the Royal Yacht Squadron’s prestigious Sir Kenneth Preston Trophy in 2017. He has Cowes resident and twice Etchells World Champion Andrew Palfrey on bow as they train up towards the 2018 Worlds to be held in Australia in October.

It’s almost impossible to list everybody racing who has a CV that impresses but if it’s windy Ante Razmilovic from the local fleet will be hard to beat, having placed second in the Etchells World’s three times and always being a contender while rounding out the legends is Ian Murray from Australia who has been an America’s Cup skipper three times, raced Stars at the Olympics, was Regatta Director for the Americas Cup twice and, oh, is also a previous Etchells world champion!!!

Should be one tough weekend of boat racing.

Daily updates at facebook.com/groups/etchellscowes

James Badenach’s Royal Hong Kong team wins Gertrude Cup

Organised by the Royal Thames Yacht Club, in conjunction with the Cowes Etchells Fleet.

James Badenach’s team representing the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club, has won the fourth edition of the Gertrude Cup, after holding off a strong challenge from the USA Youth Team, led by Connor Needham. Bruce Huber’s team, representing the Royal Yacht Squadron, recovered from a show-stopping collision on the second day, to claim third. Two youth teams tied on points for fourth, with the Grieg City Academy YC , led by Montel Fagan-Jordan, winning on countback, from the Royal London Yacht Club Youth Team, led by Ted Blowers.

Final Results

Two races were held on the final day of the Gertrude Cup, taking the series tally to thirteen. Pewter skies with rain and sea fog, reduced visibility and air temperature, but did not dent the enthusiasm of the eleven international teams. A southwesterly gradient breeze built during the day, peaking at 20 knots, with the wind oscillating 20 degrees, producing a shifty race course in the Central Solent. Once again, the Royal Thames Race Management Team, led by PRO Phil Lawerence, produced windward leeward courses with slide rule precision, taking into account a strong tidal flow. Two teams shared top performance of the day. Bill Steele’s team representing the Royal Perth Yacht Club, and Rob Tyrwhitt-Drake’s team, representing the Royal Ocean Racing Club, both scored podium results.


The Gertrude Cup is a fantastic event, because you have to get a new boat every day and set it up” commented James Badenach. “ This takes a lot of effort by the organisers and we really appreciate everyone that has been involved. I would recommend this regatta to everyone. I would also like to thank my crew, and also Connor (Needham) and his team. It was a great battle, and they threw everything at it, which produced really good and enjoyable racing.”

“Fantastic close racing at a fabulous regatta,” enthused Cowes Etchells Fleet Class Captain, David Franks. “We hope that all of the competitors will be back next year. Special thanks to the support given by Jan Muysken, Bill Steele, and David Anastasi, who have competed in every edition of the Gertrude Cup. I would also thank the owners of the Etchells that have put their boats into the regatta, and Graham Sunderland, Darren Smith, and Kevin Downer, who have provided fantastic support, on and off the water, with Lizzie Fiddaman and Georgina Muncaster from the Royal Thames Yacht Club. The Cowes Etchells Fleet has a very active youth programme, over 300 young sailors have sailed Etchells with us, and it is so pleasing to see four youth teams at the Gertrude Cup, and we hope to build on that.”

A Prize Giving Ceremony was held in Cowes Yacht Haven. James Badenach was presented with the Gertrude Cup. Connor Needham’s USA Youth Team was the winner of the Olin Stephens Trophy, donated by the Royal Thames Yacht Club, for the best youth team. This trophy will be competed for as a special youth prize each year, and Miami will be the next host of the challenge, in March 2018. Two British teams will be chosen for the trip.


Whilst the winners rightly received great appreciation from their rivals, there were three rowdy cheers for the Grieg City Academy YC, which showed exceptional talent for a team that has little experience in sailing, from three pupils who are just 17 years old; Montel Fagan-Jordan, Camillo Orobio, and Shabazz Patterson.

The fifth edition of The Gertrude Cup will commence on July 28th 2018, teams wishing to participate should contact the Cowes Etchells Fleet.

For more information about The Gertrude Cup visit our Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/rtycgertrude/

The Gertrude Cup 22 – 26 July

Organised by the Royal Thames Yacht Club, in conjunction with the Cowes Etchells Fleet. Etchells teams from yacht clubs from around the World have been invited to Cowes, to compete for the Royal Thames Yacht Club’s Gertrude Cup. The invitational event for the Etchells Class has attracted teams representing yacht clubs from Australia, Great Britain, Hong Kong, Malta, Nigeria, and the United States of America. The invitational regatta features five days of exciting racing, and a vibrant social programme. The regatta has great emphasis on introducing young talented sailors into the Cowes Etchells Fleet.

A fleet of equally matched Etchells is provided, each crew may sail a different hull each day to ensure fairness. Fully rigged, with new matching sails and prepared, ready to race, by the Cowes Etchells Fleet. The helm must be a member of the invited club, but there are no other crew restrictions other than a weight limit. The intention is to run thirteen races with up to four races per day.


As an invitational regatta, the organisers of The Gertrude Cup, encourage young talented youth sailors to experience the Etchells Class. The Royal Thames Yacht Club Youth Academy, skippered by Tim Gratton, won The Gertrude Cup last year and will be defending the trophy. Ted Blowers, son of current Etchells World Champion Paul Blowers, will skipper a team from the Gurnard Sailing Club. Conor Needham will skipper a USA Youth Team, and the Greig City Academy will field a young team from the school in North London.

The Gertrude Cup has a full social programme, including a Welcome Party hosted by the Royal London Yacht Club, Drinks with Zhik at their famous Cowes store, and a Daily Prize Giving & Afternoon Tea at Cowes Yacht Haven. A Gala Dinner will be held at the Royal Yacht Squadron Pavilion.

Daily results from The Gertrude Cup