What regular people expect when they hear the word ‘yacht’ is a large luxurious boat with a heli pad and swimming pool that is controlled through an iPad. However, some great ladies and gentlemen think of racing yachts. Since the UK Cumberland Cup in 1775, yacht racing has been a sport.
Over the years, sailing races have been made more challenging and the design of yachts more diverse. Today’s major races can be classified into inshore, offshore, ocean and around the World. Below is a list containing three of the most prestigious yacht competitions in the World.
1. The American Cup
Founded in 1851, the American Cup is the oldest and most prestigious sailing race. It only involves two participants competing for the America’s Cup, a trophy. The trophy which is popularly known as ‘Auld Mug,’ was named after the first winner of the race. Schooner America was the yacht that won the first race around the Isle of Wright in England. The race was exclusively for Englishmen for 132 years. After the trophy had been donated to the New York Yacht Club under the Deed of Gift, it was made available for international competition.
The participants involve a defender and a challenger. The defender is the team currently holding the trophy, and the challenger competes for it. The timing is agreed upon by the defender and the challenger. When a challenging team wins, it gains stewardship of the cup. The most recent competition was raced in 50 foot foiling catamarans.
2.Trans Pacific Yacht Race
This is one of the most premier sailing competitions. Participants come from all corners of the world to take part in the 111-year-old event. The race spans over 2225 nautical miles from Port Fermin Buoy in San Pedro, California as the start point all the way to Diamond Head in Honolulu, O’ahu. O’ahu is an island in Hawaii. That makes up 4121 kilometres of open ocean.
The race is held once in two years since it was founded by Clarence Macfarlane in 1906. This event is famed for quick downwind sailing propelled by the trade winds. A trophy named Barn Door is the award given to the team with the least sailing time at the finish line. Originally, the trophy was known as the ‘First to Finish.’ From 2009 onwards, the trophy is restricted to manual powered sailing yachts only.
3. The Global Challenge
The Global Challenge was an around-the-world race run by Challenge Business, a company founded by Sir Chay Blyth in 1989. It was held once in every four years. The race featured ordinary men and woman navigating steel yachts with a single design round Cape Horn and sailing through the treacherous Southern Ocean. Battling winds of up to 70 km, it was unique in that it took the way around the world that was against prevailing winds.
In order to participate, an individual had to pay a huge fee for charity. The route covered 29000 n mi (54000km) from Portsmouth in the UK and back to Portsmouth. It was a charity race for Feed the Children and was the ultimate challenge for amateur sailors. After lacking a sponsor in 2006, ”The world’s Toughest Yacht Race” had to be discontinued and the fleet put up for sale.