Photo and Text: Gstaad Yacht Club
The winter season is off to a great start for the Gstaad Yacht Club. Highlights include three sporting events, and a plethora of other activities are in store.
Olympic Preparation for GYC Members
GYC’s Matías Bühler and Nathalie Brugger of the Nacra 17 team continued their successful path finishing 3rd in the 2nd Olympic Test Event for Rio.
Regatta in Monaco
The GYC Otpi Team celebrated its 4th victory in Monaco January 15–18, 2015. 64 young sailors from 13 different countries, between 11 and 15 years old, shared their passion for sailing in Monaco. These keen sailors were able to reach maturity in terms of tactics and strategy. They sailed on Optimist vessels offered by the shipbuilder Erplast (each team brought their own sails). This year four new nations entered the competition: Algeria, Denmark, Finland, and Austria.
The regatta started with strong winds on Thursday, when the teams sailed the first part of the qualification (Round Robin) on the sea. GYC’s team won six out of seven races and placed in the leading position. In contrast to the first day, there was no wind at all on Friday and no races could be sailed. Thanks to a great alternative program with ice carting, this day became a big success as well. The qualification was finished on Saturday in front of Monaco’s spectacular harbour. At the end of the “Round Robin”, GYC maintained its spot as number one.
After a moderate start in the quarter finals on Sunday (best of three) and losing against the Belgian team, success became possible once more. Two wins in a row brought the GYC team back and qualified for the semi-finals. Here they sailed and won against the Yacht Club of Aquitaine, qualifying for the final against the team of HSS Helsinki. In a tantalising final race, HSS Helsinki kept its leading position until the last mark, where the GYC team came from behind, beating them and winning the final.
"It was a really tight last racing day, and I’m proud of our hard work,” said GYC coach Antonis Drosopoulos at the prize-giving ceremony. “For 4th time in a row, GYC won the Monaco Optimist Team Race. Congratulations to all the teams for their effort.”
Pleased with the event itself, Drosopoulos commented further,“It was the best edition of this event, with the organising and racing committee doing a fine job despite difficult conditions. Yacht Club Monaco offered a high level and warm hospitality to us and we will be glad to come back for the 2016 edition!"
Future Racing Events
Spring and summer events are already taking shape. GYC is invited to the Gran Canaria Team Race in March together with the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, the Royal Yacht Squadron, the Solent Daring Class, the Royal Malta Yacht Club as well as the Real Club Nautico de Santander.
In July, the club is invited to the 200th Anniversary Regatta of the Royal Yacht Squadron. Being the first reciprocal club of the GYC, it has steadfast intentions to send a delegation to the team race announced for all members under the age of 30.
On the social side the Gstaad Yacht Club will organise, as usual, diverse events which guests of GYC members are wholeheartedly welcome to attend.
Speaking of Which...
Andrew Winch, founder of Andrew Winch Designs, presents 30 years in yacht design. Based in London, Winch has won all of the industry’s most coveted design awards. Initially focused on designing luxury yachts, over time the company has added private jet, architecture and interior design to its specialities.
Through the four years of organising, the Centenary Trophy in the Mediterranean the GYC has become a strong force in classic sailing. For lovers of classic yachts, later on this winter season Toby Walker will have a talk about the complete refit of the classic sailing C&N yacht “Orion of the Seas”. This will include a photo history of the rebuilding process and discussion about the perils and joys of bringing a classic yacht back to perfect condition.
Signings and Screenings
GYC is delighted to offer its members the chance to meet Yoyo Maeght, and for her to sign each guest’s edition of her book- “La Saga Maeght”. Later on in the season Natasha Fraser-Cavanossi and Ariel de Ravenl will present their book on Lou Lou de la Falaise.
Screenings of documentaries and other films include the unique opportunity to see award-winning IMAX documentary JERUSALEM narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch in mid-February. The event will be followed by a Q&A with producer George Duffield. Currently playing on IMAX screens worldwide, this documentary shows an exceptional vision of JERUSALEM.