Gery Trentesaux FRA 428 Wins in Cannes.

The 43rd Regates Royal was held in Cannes from 20th-24th September, in glorious sailing conditions. 30 teams gathered for this annual event as covid restrictions ease across Europe so Dragon racing can once again be enjoyed by many on an International stage.

Cannes is famous for it’s sunny weather, stunning hospitality and fantastic ambiance and this year was no exception. The Old Port (Vieux Port) was once again freed up to allow a superb collection of Classic Yachts, many 5.5m’s, a number of Semeralda 888’s and 30 International Dragons. The red carpet was truly laid out for all and Yacht Club de Cannes did an excellent job both on and off the water.

FRA 413 “Annette” lead the fleet to win Race 1, they also won race 2 & 7.

A total of 8 races were completed over the 5 days in a variety of conditions, on 2 different course areas. After leaving the Old Port teams had a leisurely sail out towards Palm Beach and around the corner towards Golfe Juan. With the famous “Iles de Lerins” bordering the race area’s out towards the “Cap D’Antibes” it was the most idyllic setting for quality racing, enhanced even more with the introduction of GPS controlled marks. These new marks give the Race Management more options in deeper water and will speed up course changes and course variety as organisers become more familiar with their settings.

Amazing conditions in Cannes at the Regates Royal.

The early part of the week was dominated by FRA 413 “Annette” helmed by Gauthier Guillou, crewed by Gwen Chapalan & Jacques Caraes. However, despite winning both of the opening races this top French team had RUS 27 Anatoly Loginov and fellow French sailing legend Gery Trentesaux helming his new Petticrows V6 FRA 428 “Bande A Part” close on their heels. As the week progressed it was RUS 27 who held a narrow overall lead after winning race 3 and race 5, with FRA 428 in second place and FRA 413 third.

RUS 27 ahead again & were leading overall after 5 races…

Going into the final races it was obvious that one of the top 3 boats (FRA 413, RUS 27 & FRA 428) would take the championship but it was all still extremely close until race 6! After choosing the wrong side of the first upwind leg, RUS 27 could only manage to recover to 11th place and FRA 413 were BFD. In addition RUS 27 were also BFD in race 7, whilst FRA 428 made the most of their chance to seize the initiative and by winning race 8 Gery Trentesaux and his team of Jean Queveau, Sofian Bouvet & Christian Ponthieu took the title… Not only winners of the 43rd Regates Royal but also 2021 French National Champions!


French National Champions FRA 428 Gery, Christian, Jean & Sofian.

Some very consistent sailing in the final races saw SWE 404 “High Times” helmed by Karl-Gustaf Lohr creep up the leader board to take the final podium place behind RUS 27 and FRA 428.  Karl and his team of Jesper Bendix and Mads Hansen not only took 3rd overall but also top Corinthian team and soon they will travel over to San Remo (Oct 27-31) to defend their Corinthian Title at the final IDA Grand Prix of 2021.

Dragon Podium 3rd Karl (Left), Christian (Centre) & 2nd Anatoly, Alexander & Vadim.

Top 7 teams were :  FRA 428, RUS 27, SWE 404, SUI 313, FRA 413, RUS 34 & FRA 420.

In 4th place overall and also winner of Race 6 was SUI 313 “Free” Dirk Oldenburg, Dominik Zycki & Ian Ainslie. 5th FRA 413 who also take 2nd place in the French Nationals, 6th place went to our former IDA Chairman Vasily Senatorov who has recently recovered from a bad bout of Covid 19, so it was great to see Vasily back sailing again and finishing so high up in this competitive fleet…

7th overall and 3rd in the French Nationals was FRA 420 “Outlaw” helmed by Stephane Basden, crewed by Patrick Aucour & Pascal Rambeau. Stephane is a former Vice Chairman of the IDA and told me he was finishing Dragon sailing after this season to spend more time with family and leisure sailing… If this is indeed the case then on behalf of Dragon sailors we thank you for your long service to the class Stephane, good luck in the future and maybe one day we may see you back in our wonderful class. Remember, once a Dragon Sailor, always a Dragon sailor 🙂

FRA 420 “Outlaw” Stephane, Patrick & Pascal 3rd overall in French Nationals.

Finally, many thanks to Gerard Blanc for his endless hard work and to all the helpers and volunteers of Yacht Club de Cannes, we all appreciate the countless hours given by the Ladies at registration, the tractor drivers and crane operators, plus the Race Management Team and Jury….. Many Dragon sailors will keep boats in Cannes for their Winter series which begins with the Armistice Cup in November. Thanks also go to “Jehan Lerin Photgraphie” for these amazing photo’s… More can be found on Jehan’s website.

Higher, Faster, Longer……   Dragon Racing is Back!          Stavros.