J Class Svea, to race in Europe with Swedish Syndicate
Svea is under new ownership and due to be shipped from Charleston, USA to arrive in Palma in May where the new team will prepare the boat in time for June's Palma Superyacht Cup where she is set to line up against Velsheda, Ranger and Topaz.
When Svea, JS1, became available the syndicate of Swedish sailors Niklas Zennström, Filip Engelbert and Hjalmar Winbladh, decided to collaborate together to have the Tore Holm design return to her Swedish roots and to race finally under the national flag.
She was launched in January 2017 and was initially raced in Bermuda and at the J Class World Championships in Newport RI. She is the largest J Class yacht ever and was built from original designs drawn by Swedish naval architect and boat builder Tore Holm, well known as a noted designer of Six and Eight Metre yachts.
The 1937 drawings were unearthed from a drawer by a well-known Dutch Metre class aficionado and after analysis, her potential was immediately evident.
The intention of the new syndicate is to have a crew which is largely Swedish. But J Class experience is vital and so the crew will be led by eight-times round the world racer Bouwe Bekking, who won the J Class World Championship with Lionheart. Magnus Woxen is helping put together the crew, but it will certainly include Bekking's long-time collaborator Jens Dolmer and Zennström's regular navigator Steve Hayles as well as project manager Tim Powell.
"When Svea became available it was seen to be an opportunity which was too good to be missed. There is a natural connection for all of the syndicate who wanted to have Svea race in Swedish colours," project manager Tim Powell enthuses.
"Now we are all looking forward to going sailing for the first time," Powell adds. "We are very much of the view that the learning curve will be steep to start with and it will take time to get the team fully up to speed with 30 or so on board and all the jobs so interlinked it is a very specific learning programme."
The team plan an extended training period just before Superyacht Cup Palma and thereafter plan to race at the Rolex Maxi Yacht Cup in Sardinia in September.