The Lipton Challenge Cup 2019 will be one to watch for sure!
It is the first ever Challenge Cup to be sailed on the fast and pacey Cape 31.
This one-design class may be new to the Lipton Cup regatta but it has renewed a sense of pride and determination to win the second oldest sporting trophy in South Africa.
South Africa’s top sailors, each representing a South African Yacht Club or region will be on display, and they won’t hold back for anything!
The defending yacht club is Royal Cape Yacht Club, which will be represented by ‘Seascape powered by Yanmar’, skippered by Gerry Heggie and Asenathi Jim. This team earned the right to represent RCYC in a sail-off challenge against ‘Magic’.
The Lipton Cup Fleet
The 10 strong fleet also includes ‘Nitro’, with owner Mike Hayton as skipper, representing the Witbank Yacht Club. His highly competent crew is led by David Rae who has vast top-class international sailing experience.
Also representing a Gauteng based yacht club is Philip Baum on ‘Nemesis’ sailing for Aeolians Yacht Club. Baum has selected a crew that is a mix of international sailing experience and up-and-coming young sailors.
‘MB Racing’ will be representing the Walvis Bay Yacht Club, with Bjorn Geiger as skipper. Geiger is the Class Chairman and he is a great promoter of the class.
‘Vivaldi’ representing Sailing PE will be helmed by Rick Nankin, who at the age of 69 will be the oldest helmsman in the fleet. He has won the Lipton Challenge Cup 7 times in his illustrious career.
‘Orion’ skippered by multiple Lipton Cup winner, Mark Sadler, will be sailing for the Royal Natal Yacht Club. He brings with him top SA sailors who sail on the international circuit.
Cape 31 circuit champs, Roger Hudson and Malcolm Hall will be sailing ‘Magic’ representing Hermanus Yacht Club.
The young sailors in the fleet will also have representation in the form of UCTYC. Nicholas Ryall will take the helm of ‘CuAI6 (PO4)4(OH)8.4(H2O)’ (Turquoise) to represent the club.
Gordon’s Bay Yacht Club will be represented by ‘Ski’ skippered by Rodney Tanner.
Langebaan Yacht Club is represented by ‘Scud’, skippered by multiple Lipton Cup winner Greg Davies and top SA sailor Geoff Meek.
The History of the Lipton Challenge Cup
The magnificent Lipton Challenge Cup trophy was presented to Royal Cape Yacht Club by Sir Thomas Lipton in 1909, 110 years ago.
The first Lipton Challenge Cup regatta was held in 1911, and 2019 will be the 66th challenge sailed. It seems fitting that 110 years after Sir Thomas Lipton presented the Lipton Cup trophy and the deed of gift to RCYC, the title will now be hard fought for on a new class of racing yacht – the Cape 31.
This is the 6th change of yacht class in the history of the event.
The event will be run from Royal Cape Yacht Club in Cape Town from 5th August till the 10th August.
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📷 Ashleigh de Villiers / Matthew du Toit / Greg Beadle