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Back to the Future: 120 years of the One Ton Cup

by Louay Habib 16 Sep 2019 17:53 BST 18-22 September 2019
Final day - One Ton Cup - FAST40 Race Circuit Round 5 © VR Sport Media

For the fourth year in succession, the FAST40+ Class will be competing for the One Ton Cup, created by the Cercle de la Voile de Paris (CVP - Paris Yacht Club) in 1899.

The 2019 edition will be sailed in French waters for the first time since 2002, hosted by La Société des Régates du Havre. This year is the 120th anniversary of the first regatta, with the One Ton Cup returning to France, where it all began.

Racing for the FAST40+ Class for the One Ton Cup starts on Thursday 19th September with four days of action concluding on Sunday 22nd September. The owner driven hi-tech race boats, with pro-am teams, will compete in up to ten races.

PRO Stuart Childerley has the option of organising short sharp windward leeward races longer and round the buoys courses. Social events are part and parcel of the FAST40+ Class with après sailing gatherings, a regatta dinner at the famous La Société des Régates du Havre clubhouse, and the presentation of the world famous One Ton Cup to the winning team.

Established in 1838, La Société des Régates du Havre is the oldest yacht club in France and is no stranger to the One Ton Cup. In 1958 the regatta was won in Le Havre by R.S.G. Perry's Royal Thames from the drawing board of the famous 12 metre yacht designer David Boyd. The win for Royal Thames was the first by a British team for over 30 years. In 1965, 14 teams from eight nations competed in Le Havre for the One Ton Cup.

Hans Albrecht's Sparkman & Stephens designed One Tonner Diana III was victorious, the first Danish team to ever lift the trophy. In 1967 the One Ton Cup returned to Le Havre, Hans Beilken's Optimist was the winner racing his Dick Carter designed Optimist, winning the cup for Germany for the first tim since 1911. Hans Beilken's Optimist retained the trophy in 1968.

Past winners of the One Ton Cup include many legends in the sport of sailing; Syd Fischer, Harold Cudmore, Henrik Soderlund, King Harald V of Norway, Paul Cayard, Francesco de Angelis, Bertrand Pacé, John Kostecki, Thierry Peponnet, and Russell Coutts. The current holder is Niklas Zennstrom's Rán Racing, which will be competing to retain the trophy in a highly competitive fleet. Peter Morton's Girls on Film lifted the famous trophy in 2016 and 2017.

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