Pendennis Cup 2012 Draws To An Exciting Close

By Ben Roberts

The Pendennis Cup has drawn to a close after four days of high-octane racing and six days of shore-side events. Now, the Falmouth shipyard has released the final results of the exciting battle between 13 high-performance yachts.

The Pendennis Cup provides one of the best social scenes and some of the most challenging racing conditions of any regatta in the world. As Charlie Wroe, the captain of winning yacht Mariette enthused, “This has been a really great event. The owner, boat and crew all had a fantastic time and winning the regatta was the icing on the cake. The prize giving party was one of the all time best that I’ve experienced.”

Each day the 13-strong fleet dealt with varied conditions and challenges with Falmouth Bay providing an exceptional playground for these yachts. As the eclectic fleet lined up in the bay the spectacle of all the yachts jostling for position ready for their starting run provided an impressive sight off Pendennis Point each day, and tactics around the course just as exciting to the guests watching from the water.

The Pendennis Cup welcomed back yachts that have competed in previous years, including the 2010 winner Adela, who provided a dramatic sight around the course as she loomed through the fog on Tuesday, bearing down on the smaller yachts in the Class 2 fleet. A highlight for guests was seeing Adela accompanied to Wednesday’s start line by her new support ship, the 47m motor yacht A2, as she set off on her maiden voyage following a substantial 16-month refit at Pendennis.

The 1911 built Gaff Cutter Mariquita always draws admirers amongst the spectator fleet. Unfortunately she struggled on the more blustery days but Friday saw her come into her own as the crew demonstrated their tactical prowess using her classic cutter rig to make the most of the light 5-7 knot breeze.

During the race Mariquita chased Mariette around the course, often running parallel to her along the reach and finally taking Mariette at the finish line with an impressive tack just beside Black Rock to win the day’s race, providing one of the most memorable finishes of the week. Unfurled was a new entrant to the Cup this year and provided constant entertainment throughout with her impressive speed and maneuverability consistent with her modern performance design and Sloop rig.

Unfurled took line honours in each of the four races, and her second place in the Cup is testament to her competitiveness this year. In the end Mariette snatched victory in the final race thereby taking first place in both the St Petroc Traditional Class and as overall winner of the 2012 Pendennis Cup.

The smaller yachts also provided enthusiasts with a delightful spectacle throughout the week, and have been no less competitive than the larger yachts. On the final day Class 3 was still open with Mikado, Tomahawk, Pinuccia and Firebrand once more closely matched around the course. Tomahawk and Firebrand completed the circuit only three minutes apart, however it was Firebrand, owned by famed yacht designer Ed Dubois, which took the honours and was crowned winner of the Little Dennis Classic Class.

Ed Dubois was thrilled with the result and commented “The Pendennis Cup was a truly memorable regatta with a wonderfully friendly and warm atmosphere – great sailing with a wonderful variety of yachts. Falmouth Harbour and its approaches is one of the most beautiful sailing areas in the world and everyone on board Firebrand was so pleased to be there. We look forward to the next event with great enthusiasm!

For more information on the results, click here.

By Ben Roberts