16 September 2011

Classic Week - Happy 100th Birthday to Mariquita

Mariquita (Ladybird in Spanish), is a 38 metre gaff cutter and is the only survivor of this class of racing yacht, which disappeared after the Great War. This year she is 100 years old. From 1911 to 1913, Mariquita raced 69 times, winning 35 regattas - no small feat. After the war she went to Norway, was renamed Maud IV, then came back across the North Sea in 1924 to sail under the flag of her new co-owners: Sir Edward Illife and Alan Messer. Then, in 1939, Mariquita's history took a dramatic turn - once again she was sold and literally dismembered and remained for more than fifty years in a boathouse. She was saved from her Pin Mill mud berth in 1991. Restored by Fairlie Restoration, and launched again in 2004, Mariquita immediately took up racing in line with her glorious past and successes.

It takes a dozen strong sailors to haul Mariquita's 500-pound gaff to the top of the mainmast, dragging hundreds of pounds of sailcloth up with it. (see first photo) Today Mariquita is rigged with synthetic fiber rope, but otherwise the yacht is sailed just as she was when she left the Scottish shipyard of William Fife & Sons in 1911.

1 comment:

Dave-CostaRicaDailyPhoto.com said...

It takes a large crew all working together to handle a yacht like that. Maybe they would let the woman you showed yesterday join the crew.

Hope your foot is better.

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