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Posts Tagged ‘J-class’

8 stunning yachts at the Superyacht Cup Palma

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014

This year’s Superyacht Cup in Palma, Mallorca proved to be a spectacle showcasing some of the world’s finest large yachts. There were 26 entries ranging from 24-51 metres in length, representing more than 80 years of yacht design. Here’s our pick of the stunning eye candy on display, ranging from beautiful J-Class yachts (also see Rainbow: beautiful J-Class in action) to beautiful Spirit yachts (see also Five stunning film star yachts).

Superyacht Cup Palma: Borkumriff lV photo Clairematches.com

Borkumriff lV. This spectacular modern classic schooner from 2002 is a Dykstra Naval Architects design based on the lines for an American East Coast Topsail Schooner drawn by John Alden in the early part of the 20th century. At (167ft) 51m she was the largest boat at the regatta – her aluminium masts are more than 50m (166ft) tall and are fitted with carbon fibre booms and gaffs. Photo ClaireMatches.com.

Gaia. Superyacht Cup Palma. Photo Clairematches.com.

Gaia. The slender Spirit yachts never fail to catch admiring glances and the 100ft (30.6m) Gaia is no exception. She’s also a fast boat in race mode, winning the first race in class 2 and taking third in the final race. It was a scoreline that left her second in class and third overall at the end of the regatta. Photo ClaireMatches.com.

Ganesha. Superyacht Cup Palma. Photo Clairematches.com.

Ganesha. This 149ft (46m) Ed Dubois design by Vitters Shipyard was launched in August last year. She won the opening race in Palma by more than seven minutes and took two more podium results to win class 1 and take second place overall at the end of the regatta. It’s hard to get a feel for the sheer size of this yacht from photographs alone – she has a beam of 30ft (9.1m), a 203ft (62m) thin film technology carbon mast, carries almost 20 tonnes of fuel and weighs almost 250 tonnes. Photo ClaireMatches.com.

Hanuman. Superyacht Cup Palma. Photo Clairematches.com.

Hanuman. Another modern J Class, with a carbon rig and deck house, but finished exquisitely in teak, Hanuman was only one point behind Lionheart going into the final day of racing. The yacht is a re-incarnation using modern materials where possible of the Charles Nicolson designed Endeavour ll that was launched in 1937 and sadly scrapped little more than 30 years later. Photo ClaireMatches.com.

Heartbeat. One of the smaller yachts at the regatta, Heartbeat was last year’s overall winner and was again raced exceptionally well, winning her class and the Hoek Cup for the second consecutive year. She is a Truly Classic 78, built by Claasen Shipyards in 2007 to a design by Hoek, and had her last refit at Royal Huisman in 2012/13.Superyacht Cup Palma. Photo Clairematches.com.

Heartbeat. One of the smaller yachts at the regatta, Heartbeat was last year’s overall winner and was again raced exceptionally well, winning her class and the Hoek Cup for the second consecutive year. She is a Truly Classic 78, built by Claasen Shipyards in 2007 to a design by Hoek, and had her last refit at Royal Huisman in 2012/13. Photo ClaireMatches.com.

Lionheart Superyacht Cup Palma. Photo Clairematches.com.

Lionheart. One of five J Class yachts at Palma, Lionheart was a star of the regatta, winning her second J Class event in a row, after victory in Mahon, Menorca a month earlier. With legendary Volvo Ocean Race skipper Bouwe Bekking as tactician, the 43m yacht built by Freddie Bloemsma and Claassen Jachtbouw in 2010 to a Hoek design won the final race coastal race at Palma to finish the event in style. Photo ClaireMatches.com.

Odin Superyacht Cup Palma. Photo Clairematches.com.

Odin. This stunning Swan 90 was a new boat at the event this year, scoring a consistent run of fourth and fifth places to finish fifth overall in Class 2. Photo ClaireMatches.com.

Unfurled. Superyacht Cup Palma. Photo Clairematches.com.

Unfurled. This 112ft (34.2m) modern Frers design won class two with a 2, 1, 1 scoreline and also lifted the overall prize for the regatta. What’s more she was crewed by a team of four families, including renowned father and son partnership Ross and Cambell Field. “It is a brilliant regatta. To have that breeze dial up at 1300hrs, with some lovely courses with a good mix of windward-leewards and some reaching as well – it’s fantastic for the owner and fantastic for the team.” said Cambell Field at the end of the event. “This has been a successful team over 15 years …I am thrilled for the owner.” Photo Clairematches.com.



The Superyacht Cup is an annual event and provides an impressive display for spectators and competitors alike. For more gorgeous craft see The 10 sexiest sailing yachts in the World.


Over the Rainbow: J-Class yacht video

Friday, May 30th, 2014

The original J Class yacht Rainbow, owned and sailed by American railroad millionaire Harold Vanderbilt, successfully defended the America’s Cup in 1934, against Thomas Sopwith’s British challenger, Endeavour.

Watch some Pathe news footage of the original Rainbow below.

J-Class Rainbow

J-Class Rainbow

The new Rainbow JH2 was commissioned after the formation of the J Class Association in 2000 and was built in Holland to a design by Dykstra Naval Architects based on the original plans.

With state-of-the-art systems Rainbow JH2 can be sailed by a crew of just eight in cruising mode with eight further people accommodated as guests on board. However, when racing Rainbow’s huge spinnaker needs many hands and 28 sailors are often required.

The original Rainbow took just 100 days to build, whereas JH2 took two years due to the extra luxury and technology required to make her into a comfortable cruising yacht as well as a racing machine.

For the full story, see: Rainbow: beautiful J-Class in action


Rainbow: beautiful J-Class in action

Wednesday, May 28th, 2014

By 1930, the America’s Cup was contested using the J-Class Rule. The United States had become a world super power and American railroad multi-millionaire, Howard Venderbilt was the undefeated champion of the J-Class era (1930-37). However, most J-Class yachts were scrapped prior or during World War II because steel and lead had become so precious to the war effort. Only three survived. Shamrock V was kept in relatively good order but Endeavour and Velsheda were left to rot in mud berths in the Hamble River before being rebuilt in recent years. In 2000 the J Class Association was formed and several re-constructions were to be commissioned, including Rainbow. The original Rainbow successfully defended the cup in 1934, against Thomas Sopwith’s British challenger, Endeavour.

You can watch original Pathe News footage of J Class yacht Rainbow here.

J-Class Rainbow

The magnificent J-Class Rainbow in all her glory. Photo Holland Jachtbauw.

Fast forward to the 21st century. Rainbow JH2 was re-designed by Dykstra Naval Architects according to the original design of William Starling Burgess and launched in February 2012, by Holland Jachtbouw in Holland. Based upon the lines of the original America’s Cup winner in 1934, this spectacular 40 metre J features a high-end superyacht interior and a unique hybrid propulsion and power system, inside a racing boat hull, all topped off by a grand prix racing deck and rig.

J-Class Rainbow interior saloon

Under the new association rules, all J-Class yachts have a full interior and Rainbow has luxurious accommodation. The saloon is not impressive in size, but features beautiful custom mahogany raised paneling and sublime art-deco features and a formal dining table. The attractively detailed profiles and paneling help define that classic 30s atmosphere on board.

J-Class Rainbow owner's stateroom

The owner’s stateroom is aft spanning a beam of over 21ft due to the gorgeous and space making tumbledown design and there are two en suite twin guest cabins, each with Pullman berths.


J-Class Rainbow lightweight hull

Using the very latest computer modelling to optimise Rainbow’s performance Dykstra Naval Architects have produced a lightweight construction with a high degree of overall stiffness. The design was tested in towing tanks and wind tunnels and the hydrodynamic and aerodynamic data was analysed before the final design was drawn.

J-Class Rainbow

The Southern Spars high modulus mast is 55.5m tall and is equipped with the latest EC6 continuous rigging with TPT (thin ply technology) spreaders to reduce drag. The 18.5m high modulus racing box boom has a rotating gooseneck fitting and carbon lazy jack arms. Lewmar high-speed hydraulic winches complete the high specification rigging package which flies North Sails 3DL racing sails. Everything is entirely customised to Rainbow’s specific requirements and everything metallic on deck has been anodised to create a brushed steel effect.


J-Class Rainbow hybrid engine control

The state-of-the-art Hybrid Power and Propulsion system was developed by Dutch power system specialist WhisperPower BV, making Rainbow the first full hybrid pleasure sailing yacht of its kind. The hybrid solution replaces the conventional main engine and two generator configuration found on other Js. The main engine generator can also act as an electric motor to run the propeller. The batteries can also be charged while sailing without losing more than 1.5 knots of speed. Rainbow can be operated entirely on her Hy-Store Li-ion batteries, including sailing, navigation and house load, which means that under sail, Rainbow has no engine running, whatsoever. The system can turn the main engine and generate energy just from the flow of water under the hull.


J-Class Rainbow crew

With state-of-the-art systems Rainbow can be sailed by a crew of just eight in cruising mode with eight further people accommodated as guests on board. However, when racing Rainbow’s huge spinnaker needs many hands and 28 sailors are often required. Sailing on board a J-Class like Rainbow can be described as the ultimate yachting indulgence, many of the crew on board for Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta were involved in the project and their wonder and passion for Rainbow was evident throughout the day.


Rainbow Specifications

Builder: HOLLAND JACHTBOUW • Architect & Interior designers: Dykstra Naval Architects • Built: 2012 • LOA.: 39.95 m (131.1 ft) • Beam: 6.37m (20.9 ft) • Max Draft: 4.9 m (16.08 ft) • Displacement: 176 tonnes • Sail area: 482sq m • Spinnaker 945sq m • Genoa 438sq m


“It is such a thrill to be able to fully appreciate a design that was last seen in the open almost 80 years ago,” says Tako Van Ineveld – Commercial Director at Holland Jachtbouw. ” This ‘new’ Rainbow took us over two years to build while her predecessor was completed in just 100 days. This does not mean we are slower… It is a reflection of the incredible degree of sophistication that is now contained within these timeless lines.

“The original Rainbow was an empty boat with a deck of sailing gear and a powerful aluminium rig. This Rainbow is a different proposition altogether.”



For more J-Class beauties, see: J-Class Spectacle as Five Yachts Compete at St Barths and Rainbow, Newest J-Class Sailing Yacht.








J-Class yacht Hanuman at Menorca Maxi

Friday, May 23rd, 2014

On Monday, May 19, two days before the official training races of the inaugural Menorca Maxi, Ken Read and his crew aboard J-Class yacht Hanuman, trained off Port Mahón, under relatively flat seas and moderate breeze. Official photographer Jesús Renedo went onboard and captured the beauty and excitement of the J-Class.

Loading up the winches

Despite the classic lines, J-Class yachts are high-tech racing machines featuring the latest carbon winches, super-strength lightweight sheets and lines and some terrifying rigging loads – it’s a high-stakes sailing experience. The inaugural Menorca Maxi takes place 22-25 May and features nine Wally yachts and three J-Class racers.

Trimmer's view, Hanuman

Trimmer’s view: The Hanuman logo is an image of the Hindu monkey god, for which the boat is named. Dykstra & Partners from Amsterdam took on the job to design Hanuman, which is a replica of Endeavour II, the biggest J ever built. Hanuman was built in Alustar with a carbon mast at Royal Huisman Shipyard, no stranger to the J Class yachts. She was the first new J to be built in the Netherlands and launched in 2009.

Weight to windward

Reducing windage while keeping weight high on the rail. In a stronger wind, crew can be seen half-hanging over the windward side with one arm and one leg dangling down the topsides. Menorca Maxi is an initiative of the Island Council of Menorca and is organized by Club Marítimo de Mahón, with the support of Port of Mahón, one of the Mediterranean’s biggest and most beautiful ports.

Dropping and flaking foresail

Looking after the sails: Man-power is essential to coordinate sail lowering without causing expensive damage to boat or sails.

Jockey pole

Manning the jockey pole: The loads running through this short strut are ferocious.

Afterguard in cockpit

The afterguard perches around the cockpit well: the grippy deck under foot is all that’s keeping some of the sailors on board.

Spinnaker pole hoist

Multiple bowmen: J-Class crews require many hands on the very narrow bow – in this instance to hoist the enormous traditional spinnaker pole.

Preparing to douse the chute

The bowman climbs to the outboard end of the spinnaker pole to ‘blow’ or release the guy: an essential part of the spinnaker drop that takes place around two or three minutes before rounding the leeward mark.

Dropping the Spinnaker

Many hands make light work: it takes over half the crew about five minutes to drop the spinnaker and round the leeward mark.

Ken read

Two-time America’s Cup helm and Volvo Ocean race veteran, Ken Read, one of America’s most accomplished sailors, will skipper and helm Hanuman at Menorca Maxi 2014.


How to follow the Menorca Maxi regatta

The event’s official website, www.menorcamaxi.com, is your comprehensive source of information, with daily updates, official results and plenty of high-quality photos and videos. You can also follow Menorca Maxi through its social media on Facebook, www.facebook.com/menorcamaxi, and Twitter, @MenorcaMaxi.


J-Class Yacht, Hanuman Specifications
LOA: 42.1m • LWL: 27.68m • Beam: 6.60m • Draught: 4.72m • Displacement: 183 tons • Design: Dykstra Naval Architects • Interior Design: Pieter Beeldsnijder Design

For more J-Class beauties, see: J-Class Spectacle as Five Yachts Compete at St Barths and Rainbow, Newest J-Class Sailing Yacht.

J-Class spectacle as five yachts compete at St Barths

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013

The annual superyacht pilgrimage to St Barths in the French West Indies for Bucket regatta had an additional shine this year with the arrival of five J-Class yachts. Not since 1937 has this number of J-Class America’s Cup contenders lined up on one race course.

Individual sailing programs make herding this fleet of Js to a single venue difficult. So this superb exhibition off the waters of Gustavia was a one-off. Jim Clarke’s JK6 Hanuman joined the seasoned J Velsheda, the 10-year-old Ranger and two recent launches Lionheart (see Lionheart, the new J-Class Yacht) and Rainbow (see Rainbow, Newest J-Class Sailing Yacht). After pulling out of Antigua Classic regatta a few years back citing the two other Js had gunwale to gunwale professionals, Hanuman this year arrived in St Barths led by pro helmsman Ken Read. In fact there were more professional sailors per square metre on the dock than is seen at most other events. America’s Cup co-skipper Peter Holmberg from the Virgin Islands, Chris Dickson, Dawn Riley, Bouwe Bekking and Dennis Conner, to name just a few.


Five J-Class at St Barths

As one J-Class captain commented his team had a lump in their throats during the J-Class exhibition race. Having five J-Class yachts race one another for the first time since the 1930s was impressive.


St Barths yachts line up

Thirty six "gazelles, mademoiselles, grandes dames" and J-Class yachts flocked to the the French West Indian island of St Barths for the famed St Barths Bucket. It was a sight to behold as they lined up in Gustavia harbour.


Sir Richard branson goes J-Class sailing

In contrast to the understated J-Class owners one guest aboard Hanuman was happy to soak up the limelight. British buisnessman Sir Richard Branson might have been a good luck charm for Ken Read and his team as they took a flyer that paid off to round the second windward mark six minutes ahead of their rivals. Hanuman went on to win the exhibition race from Lionheart by three minutes.


Five J-Class boats at St Barths

After trailing for two races JK5 Ranger pulled out a lead ahead of the fleet at the first turning mark of Les petites Roches on the southern end of St Barths. Second at this stage was the two year-old Lionheart followed by Hanuman, Velsheda and the most recently launched Rainbow.


St Barths day three

The Bucket delivered a mixed selection of conditions to test these superyachts. Light winds gave way to more thrilling opportunities and the four-day event unfolded. Lighter conditions earlier in the regatta gave way to more tempestuous weather on day three. Here we can see the only original of the Js, Velsheda, chasing Ranger up the first beat. These two have a history of close on the water rivalry.



Day four's 26 mile 'wrong way around the island' race pushed the J-fleet to the limit. With wind speeds hitting the mid-20s in deep swell staying onboard these boats with no guard rails was testing. Two crew members were washed overboard to be picked up by beady-eyed support vessels. Here Rainbow, with Velsheda in the distance, puts in a tack as they shaved the western corner of the island. The sailmakers were kept busy overnight.



JK5 Ranger (2002) built to the lines of the original 1930's America's Cup yacht owned by Harold Vanderbilt seen here powering off the waves in the around the island race.


JK6 Hanuman

JK6 Hanuman, the one J helmed full time by a professional the double Volvo Ocean Race skipper Ken Read leads the fleet off the start and westabout the island in the final day's race. Hanuman dominated the week winning all four races.


Salperton IV and Maltese Falcon

Thrilling racing was enjoyed in the three other divisions. Double Olympic medallist Shirley Robertson helmed the Mademoiselles class Salperton IV to a win in the final race. The Dubois yacht finished second overall in the leader board. Behind is the 88-Metre Maltese Falcon - a true Grand Dame barreling along.The Grand Dames class it was a showcase for Perini Navi with nine out of 12 entries from the famed yard. Georgia, a 48-Metre sloop banked three bullets to take the class trophy. In the Gazelle division Unfurled clocked the same to take a narrow lead over the racier Philippe Briand Perini Navi P2 helmed by Peter Holmberg.



In the Mademoiselles class, the duel between the 62-Metre Athos, and the 55-Metre schooner Adela (pictured) was curtailed as a broken leg aboard Athos in the big swell led to her retirement. The 55-Metre schooner Adela is a regular on the international superyacht race circuit. As such she maintained a lead in the Mademoiselles class throughout the regatta to win the overall St Barths Bucket trophy with America’s Cup veteran Dennis Conner in the afterguard. The final race the 'wrong way around the island' showed off this Pendennis masterclass's true capability.


The spectacle of these majestic craft both moored ashore, and out sailing, was a sight to behold. The pleasure was topped off by the invitational “Yacht Hop” where interiors and equipment were scrutinised and admired over a glass of champagne to the rhythmic sounds of live Spanish music. In all, it was a seductive regatta.

Ingrid Abery is a world-renowned yachting photographer from the UK, her work has been published widely in magazines and newspapers across the globe.

9 Top North European Sailing Destinations

Monday, February 25th, 2013

Northern Europe has a wealth of wonderful ports of call, here is a pick of just nine of the gems out there… from Cowes in the Solent, to the Kyles of Bute on Scotland’s beautiful west coast, the beautiful archipelago of Gothenberg and beyond…



Norway's spectacular western coast - photo Simo Rasanen

Lofoten Islands
Norway’s western coast offers a spectacular landscape of mountains, fjords and glaciers. What’s more, it’s well sheltered inside the chain of islands that fringes the coast, so even in strong winds you can make passages in almost flat water.

However, the downside is that the easier-to-reach southern section of this coast is in the path of summer low-pressure systems and can be very wet. But time spent getting further north will reward you with clear skies, round in the clock sun and the spectacular jewel of the Lofoten Islands. Don’t be put off by the latitude – the islands benefit from the world’s largest positive temperature anomaly relative and with warm water temperatures, the sea is teeming with life and there’s a population of sea birds to match.


Cowes - The round the island race

Cowes is home to a host of sailing events held in the waters of the Solent, including the JP Morgan Asset Mannagement Round the Island Race. Photo Thierry Martinez/See&Co/RTI Race

Cowes is home to a host of sailing events held in the waters of the Solent, including the world’s oldest – and largest – regatta, as well as the planet’s biggest yacht race, JP Morgan Asset Mannagement Round the Island Race.

Cowes remains a must visit destination for many sailors that hosts a string of prestigious events for both state of the art raceboats and the most elegant of classic yachts. Each spring the small town awakes from a quiet winter slumber to welcome tens of thousands of sailors from around the world during the season.

While the town is sometimes criticised for the lack of a smart hotel, or the difficulty of finding a restaurant table during busy events, those in the know rent one of the big Victorian villas or modern penthouses overlooking the Solent and hire a celebrity chef to take care of the catering.


Falmouth Custom House Quay

Falmouth is a traditional jumping off point - Photo Tony Atkin

This has been the traditional jumping off point from Britain’s south-west coast to destinations south and west for generations of sailors. It’s a port that can be entered in any weather, yet provides sheltered moorings for thousands of boats of all sizes.
It has repair and refit facilities for every type of boat, including the world’s largest superyachts, while annual summer events include a 450 boat regatta week plus a classic regatta with around 100 yachts. In 2012 the port was graced by the J-Class regatta, while in 2014 Falmouth will host the Tall Ships Race.
Gothenberg Archipelago

The Gothenburg Archipelago is two collections of islands

Gothenburg Archipelago
Sweden’s second city enjoys a benign, if short, summer season. Right on the doorstep, the Gothenburg archipelago is two collections of islands, offering spectacular remote anchorages, fishing villages and small resorts.

The southern island group is entirely traffic free, with the 5,000 permanent inhabitants spread across five islands reliant on delivery mopeds, electric vehicles and ferries. When you’ve had enough of the quiet life, the city centre is only an afternoon’s sail away.


No trip to France is complete without a visit to Honfleur Photo Pir6mon

No trip to northern France is complete without a visit to this stunning medieval port at the mouth of the Seine estuary and it’s a must for both foodies and art lovers. In the late part of the 19th century the Impressionist movement was born here, after Parisian artists – including Monet, Courbet and Boudin – were attracted by the exquisite quality of the light.

Yachts and fishing boats still dock behind massive lock gates in the old port, where there’s ample draught for large vessels. Excellent cafes and restaurants that cater to all tastes and budgets surround the harbour – you’d need a month to sample them all. Before leaving, provision from the superb market on the quay.


KInsale country cork

Kinsale is a gastronomic paradise

This deep water sheltered fishing village, just to the west of Cork, has become a gastronomic paradise, with food to satisfy the most discerning of tastes, especially during the annual Gourmet Festival.

It’s also in a great sailing area – a factor that attracted, among others, superyacht designer Ron Holland to set up home in Kinsale after emigrating from his native New Zealand.

Kyles of Bute

The beautiful Kyles of Bute on Scotland's west coast. Photo Kenneth Hall

Kyles of Bute
The west coast of Scotland offers some of Europe’s most spectacular sailing among majestic scenery and a host of islands that provide both welcome shelter from north Atlantic swells and a range of options for each day’s sailing.

The Kyles of Bute, between the island of Bute and the mainland, are one of the west coast’s prettiest locations, with fjord-like channels winding between heather clad hills. There are numerous sheltered anchorages, both on the Bute side and along the mainland. At the top of the narrows you can anchor behind Eilean Dubh island in Glen Caladh Harbour, giving almost perfect shelter in a tranquil location



Appropriately the Breton meaning of Morbihan is 'small sea' - photo Jean Rebiffe


This island-studded almost circular estuary in South Brittany forms a sheltered inland sea – appropriately, the Breton meaning of Morbihan is ‘small sea’. Big tides give rise to an ever-changing landscape, with yet more islands appearing as the water drops. There’s a myriad of deep water picturesque sheltered anchorages and harbours among scenic villages and fishing ports. Here the sea here permeates well inland and almost everyone has a connection with the water – a statistically improbably proportion of the French superstar solo sailors come from Morbihan.

Tallinn Harbour

Tallinn's harbour at dawn - photo CC-BY-SA license

It’s easy to assume the Baltic’s harsh winters reflect the weather year-round here, but nothing could be further from the truth. The regions climate means that summers are warm and relatively dry, without the over-bearing heat of mid-summer in the Mediterranean. The Estonian capital is the old capital city in northern Europe and shared the title of European Capital of Culture with Turku, directly opposite across the Gulf of Finland.






Rainbow, Newest J-Class Sailing Yacht

Monday, January 7th, 2013

The J-Class yachts have been captivating yachtsmen and landlubbers alike for decades, and HJB’s Rainbow continues that tradition. She’s a replica of the same-named America’s Cup winner from 1934, and the 131-footer stays true to her original design, the work of Starling Burgess. But the new Rainbow also incorporates several striking departures, not the least of which is her aluminium construction. She was also intended for both racing and chartering, so modern-day classification and safety regulations came into play. And, perhaps most notably of all, Rainbow features a diesel-electric propulsion system devised by HJB and WhisperPower, a Holland-based developer and manufacturer of hybrid systems for yachts and commercial vessels.

The owner of Rainbow approached the naval-architecture firm Dykstra & Partners in 2007 to recreate Burgess’ design. The firm has been involved with most of the Js. Like the original, Rainbow has a mahogany deckhouse, but an aluminium hull. She also has carbon fibre spars and rigging. To put her profile into perspective, her air draft is over 53 metres. In addition, her impressive spinnaker measures a little more than 950 square metres.


Rainbow 2

Thanks to HJB and WhisperPower, Rainbow is the first full hybrid pleasure sailing yacht. Rainbow’s incredibly compact engine room features a battery bank and 50-kW genset (termed a Genverter by WhisperPower because of its generator and inverter functions). They supply the same power as two gensets aboard other Js, which also have larger engine rooms. They also in turn are connected to a flywheel genset that acts as an electric motor.


Rainbow 3

Still on the subject of the hybrid system, Rainbow’s batteries can reportedly charge while she’s sailing. She loses 1.5 knots of speed, but she also gains efficiency. Rainbow was further designed to race in battery-only mode for up to three hours. When racing, such as was needed this summer in the historic J Class Regattas in the Solent, Rainbow carries a crew of 25 to 28. When chartering, a crew of just seven run her.


As you would expect of a proper J-Class yacht, Rainbow has a traditional mahogany-paneled interior. It’s easy to feel as if you’ve stepped back in time, due to the Art Deco details. The overall effect is simple without being simplistic. Dykstra & Partners collaborated with deVosdeVries design to outfit Rainbow accordingly.


When you consider that the original Js lacked interiors, and certainly luxury, Rainbow’s intimate relaxation rooms are all the more appreciated. The need to adhere to the original lines penned by Burgess meant a finite amount of space could be developed. Even with that, no one is made to feel slighted in the lounging areas.


Whether the owner is hosting family and friends, or charter guests are aboard, the formal dining area comes into play. Because Rainbow holds true to Burgess’ clean, working-deck design, you won’t find an alfresco dining table. Certainly, guests can enjoy the cockpit on pleasure cruises, but meals are more suitable inside.


The owner of Rainbow wanted to have peace and quiet overnight in the master suite as well as all guest areas, so the battery bank that HJB and WhisperPower designed is quite helpful. The sleeping spaces are aft, with the master suite being fully aft. It also spans the six metre beam.


Each of the two guest staterooms aboard Rainbow have Pullman berths. This allows a total of eight people to be accommodated on overnight voyages. The same raised and fielded mahogany joinery, nicely contrasted by white panels and overheads, that is found throughout the other relaxation areas adorns the bulkheads and custom furnishings.

Specifications: LOA: 40 metres • Beam: 6.32 metres • Draft: 4.9 metres • Displacement: 160 tonnes • Fuel capacity: 7,500 litres (approx.)

Rainbow’s owner didn’t waste a minute this year getting her ready for racing action. Four months after hand over, she competed against Lionheart, Ranger, and Velsheda in J-Class-only regattas in Falmouth and the Solent. She sailed as JH2. While she didn’t end up winning either race, Rainbow did prove her mettle with competitive times.

Surely, Rainbow will race again, whether only against her fellow Js or alongside other classic and modern sailing yachts. When she does, her owner and her crew would be wise to keep the story of the original Rainbow in mind. Commissioned by Harold Vanderbilt, Rainbow was named in anticipation of a brighter future, given the effects of the Great Depression.

For more information and specs on this incredible sailing machine, read Rainbow Rides Again or contact HJB.