16 August 2013

Admiral's Cup 1979 - The Italian Team

This post features some photos of the top two yachts from the Italian team that contested the 1979 Admiral's Cup, the Scott Kaufman design Vanina (44 feet long and rating 34.5ft IOR) and the Peterson design Yena. The team's third yacht was another Peterson design, Rrose Selavy. The Italian team finished third equal (sharing third place honours with the Hong Kong team), their best result since first competing for the Cup in 1969, and in what will be remembered as the windiest edition of the series.
Vanina sails downwind in typically fresh conditions, with spinnaker and blooper set to perfection
Vanina finished in ninth place in the individual standings (placings of 16/29/22/8/10), Yena tenth (11/23/30/11/12) and Rrose Selavy 18th (17/22/33/24/17). 

Yena - equally well poised downwind in this photo
Spinnaker take down action aboard Yena
The angular shape of the Kaufman designed Vanina shown here as she sails to windward
Another view of Yena as she sails downwind under spinnaker and blooper
The open transom style of Vanina
Vanina was later sold to the US in 1980 or 1981 and became Gauntlet (retaining almost the same sail number - US 18188), and a model view is shown below. Gauntlet campaigned in the 1984 SORC, where she finished in ninth place in Class C, and 31st overall.

Gauntlet during the 1984 SORC (photo Larry Moran)
Gauntlet is now based in Muskegon, Michigan, on the Great Lakes. She was rescued by her current owner from New Orleans after a hurricane sunk her while in harbour. Gauntlet was lifted from the harbour bottom 1998 and shipped to Michigan and was cleaned up and restored. Gauntlet has been maintained in excellent condition (see below) and she has been the Lake Michigan boat of the year eight times in the last 15, and the crew are working hard on the ninth!

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