PREPARATIONS are in full swing as 34 teams representing 11 nations from across Europe and North America compete for the International Six Metre World Championships in Cowes.

World Championship racing will start on Monday next week and run until Friday, September 8.

Registration opened yesterday (Tuesday), with official practice races scheduled for Friday and Saturday. 

Isle of Wight County Press:

Boats have been arriving in Cowes over recent weeks to train on The Solent for the event, hosted by the Royal Yacht Squadron. 

Up to eight races have been scheduled.

The fleet is divided into an Open Division and the Classic Division, for yachts built before December 31, 1965.

Amongst those competing are defending open and classic division champions Momo and Dix Août. 

Isle of Wight County Press:

In the Open Division (nicknamed 'The Moderns'), Dieter Schoen’s Momo, a Judel/Vrolijk design, launched last year, will aim for a second consecutive win. 

But she will have tough competition from a number of sailors, including the likes of Jan Eckert’s Gingko Too, a 2020 Javier Cela design, and Violeta Alvarez’s 2017 Juan Kouyoumdjian-designed Stella.

The Open Division includes boats spanning some 40 years, and features the Petterson/Howlett-designed Junior, built in 1981 — arguably the most successful post-1965 boat to win the World Championships six times and the Europeans four times. 

Isle of Wight County Press:

In the Classic Division, Dix Août, a 1950 Bjarne Aas-design, owned by Louis Heckly, will defend her title — but this time with the legendary French offshore and Dragon sailor, Géry Trenteseaux at the helm. 

Meanwhile Louis, who is also the president of the International Six Metre Class, will be racing the stunningly beautiful 1937 Olin Stephens-designed Fun. 

From the United States is Peter Hofmann and Rainer Mueller’s 1948 Olin Stephens-designed Llanoria, which competed in two Olympic Games, winning gold on both occasions, as well as winning the 2015 World Championships. 

The oldest boat racing in the Classic Division is the 1927 Johan Anker-designed Sioma, owned by Fenton Burgin.