‘Colossal’ Edition for the Regata Illes Balears Clàssics

The classic boat regatta of Club de Mar, Mallorca which takes place from 15th-18th August, has reached 50 participants for the first time, among which are several of the best boats in the Mediterranean circuit: The ‘giants’ Moonbeam IV (1914) and Cambria (1928) are premiered in the Mallorca event and the four survivors of the 15-Metre Class battle it out once again: Hispania (1909), Tuiga (1909), Mariska (1908) and The Lady Anne (1912).

XXIII Regata Illes Balears Classics, Vela Clásica Mallorca, 2017 @Nico Martinez

“This year we are going to live a spectacular edition”, says Manuel Nadal, Commodore of the host club and head of the organization of an event that combines sport, culture and heritage. The great response of the owners to the annual calling of Club de Mar, Mallorca has led to an enormous variety of boats and means the fleet is provisionally divided into nine categories, (depending on launch date and rig characteristics).

One of the most interesting battles will be in the Vintage Bermudian class, in which the eleven vessels built prior to 1950 are grouped. Cambria will be competing in this division with other renowned designs, such is the Herrshoff NY40 Rowdy and Cipinno, a German Frers design from 1949. Mercury, a Sam Crocker design from 1938 and owned by the Spanish shipowner Jordi Cabau will be at home having been restored by Mateu Grimalt in Mallorca.

The most even fight will be in the 15 Metre International class, where Tuiga (1909), Hispania (1909), Mariska (1908) and The Lady Anne (1912) will compete in real time and with their own start and regatta ‘field’. The four cutters, with lengths of around 30 meters, and whose towering gaff rigs are perfectly visible from miles away, were all designed by the naval architect William Fife III and designed for the highest competition. King Alfonso XIII had one built (Hispania) to measure himself among other rivals like the Duke of Medinaceli, owner of the Tuiga, which today is the flagship of the Yacht Club of Monaco.

The Illes Balears Clàssics Regatta was once one of the pioneers in recognizing the traditional Latin rigged boats as a class of its own. Since then, the boats and llaüts that represent the Mediterranean naval tradition have not stopped being present in the competition. Eleven boats, divided into three categories (Open, Llaüt and Regata), will be added to the classic fleet of the Club de Mar de Mallorca. These include La Balear (1924), owned by the Consell de Mallorca, or llaüt Alzina (1948), which was restored and remains active thanks to the association Alzinaires, formed by enthusiasts of the Balearic maritime heritage.

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