Galicia, a design and build centre for the 6 Metre class
Sanxenxo (Spain), August 31, 2021. Since the first ever participation of the 6 Metre class in Galicia (with "Acacia" at the 2015 Rey Juan Carlos / Master El Corte Ingles Regatta), the region has seen full support and backing of the fleet. The two divisions of the fleet; the Classics and Open, manifest both tradition and history, as well as the ultimate in technology and sporting evolution; using ancestral materials such as wood and bronze in the classics, and fibre and resin for the most advanced builds and models. Not to overlook the provision of sails from the North Sails factory in Cuntis (Pontevedra), which offers enormous support to the 6 Metre fleet in Sanxenxo.
It was back in 2016 when it was decided that an open division boat might be built, with a team formed the same year with the designer of four winning Volvo Ocean Race boats, and at the forefront of the ClubSwan class: Juan Kouyoumdjian. Under the build management of Javier Cela, Pedro Campos united the successful team behind the build of the Rodman 42, (the most highly awarded yacht in the history of sailing, with one Admiral's Cup, one Sardinia Cup, one World Championships and five Copas del Rey in Palma de Mallorca under their belt). The boat was deliberately built close to Sanxenxo, in O Grove, to be in continuous contact with the fleet, who were already sailing every month in the Salnés area.
In 2018, under the name "Stella," owned and skippered by Violeta Álvarez, the first victories began to appear with several races won at some of the most important regattas such as the Copa del Rey MAPFRE.
In 2020 and with an accumulative experience of the previous four years, Javi Cela, born in Ferrol (Galicia), decided to initiate a project with his own design. Midway through the build, Swiss owner Jann Eckert, took over the project for the boat, which was named "GinkgoToo."
In 2021 the fleet has joined the 6th Rey Juan Carlos – El Corte Inglés Máster Regatta and the Xacobeo 6mR Europeans 2021 (European class championships) with a clear rival to defeat: the winner of the last six World Championships, Philippe Durr's Swiss team, "Junior."
Durr's team will also be facing a new rival at this edition of the European championship's, fellow Swiss team "Nivola," winner of the last European Championship in 2018 at La Trinité-sur-Mer (France), and Patrick Monteiro's "Seljm" the Portuguese team from the Clube Naval de Cascais. Another boat to watch is unquestionably Hugo Stenbeck's "Sophie," winners of the 2018 Copa del Rey, runner's up in the World Championships in 2015, and third in 2019 in Hanko (Finland), as well as Spanish team, Eugenio Galdón's "Maybe XIV," sailing for the Real Club de Regatas de Cartagena, one of the major protagonists of the series at the Copa de España in Sanxenxo.
Henrik Andersin's Finnish team "Evelina," the fourth classified team at the 2019 World Championships in Hanko, Finland, and winners of the Príncipe de Asturias Trophy in Baiona in 2018, and Richard Göransson's Swedish team "Filippa", which has been renovated this year for the Xacobeo 6mR Europeans 2021, are another two teams to watch out for.
The European Championships is most definitely looking to be one of the most competitive editions for the Open division of the class, with at least ten boats, all with a clear chance of a podium position.