The historical race “100 Miles Cup” brought together almost the whole cruising fleet of St Petersburg. The competitions were held in four scoring groups: L-6 national yacht class, ORC1, ORC2, and Free Class.

Video about the race

29 boats took part in the anniversary 20th edition of the revived “100 Miles Cup”. The legendary L-6 class of St Petersburg had the most impressive lineup as the tradition has it. 12 yachts went to the starting line in this scoring group. All in all the race brought together 178 yachtsmen, who were fighting for the cherished challenge cup.

“We would like to bring back the international status of this race”, the President of St Petersburg Sailing Union Sergey Alexeev says, “The English yachtsmen took part in the very first “100 Miles Cup” in 1852 and they won the final victory, by the way. We try to preserve these links of time and carry them through centuries. We hope that in the future we will manage to attract yachtsmen from all over the world to make this event truly international and unite the whole yachting community.”  

The race was kick-started on the Day of Russia – the 12th of June, at 13:00 in the open sea, to the West of the Kronstadt Island. At the start, the wind of 15-16 knots was blowing and the start was held under the downwind sails with tough competition for positions. In course of two hours, the wind became stronger up to 20-22 knots and the first boats reached the Island of Nerva by 18:00.

Broadcasting of the race start

The waves appeared and the wind died down when the boats were reaching the Island of Nerva. The first boats went around the island approximately at 19.00 and went back with a weak contrary wind. The participants changed sails several times, fought with the calm air and finally the wind changed for the wind astern, pulling the fleet to Kronstadt.

It seemed like the race was going to finish really soon, but the weather made adjustments again and prepared a real test for all the participants again. Right at the moment when the leaders were coming to the finish line, they turned out to be in a spot with no wind, which gave an opportunity to the competitors to close the margin significantly. When the wind became strong again, the race basically started from scratch, giving everyone a very tough finish. Almost the whole fleet in all divisions finished within half an hour.  

As for L-6 cruising yacht class, the yacht “Onega” led by Vitaliy Shushpanov celebrated the victory, the yacht “Nika” led by Vadim Manukhin took the second place, the yacht “Pallas” led by Georgiy Shumov took the third place.  

In one of the scoring groups, the results are still not counted. The protest committee will work today in ORC1 group. The Aurora Borealis Team should have had a wide margin with its followers on the yacht “Lady A”. However after the finish, the Aurora Borealis Team was the first to nervously count seonds of margin to the competitors, but it seems like those precious seconds were not enough to win. Finally, a protest was issued, so we will find out who the winner is only in the evening. We are waiting for the protest results in the scoring group ORC1. According to the preliminary results, the yacht “Lady A” won, the Aurora Borealis Team took the second place, and the yacht “Mir” took the third place.

As for the scoring group ORC2, the yacht “Quartet” celebrated the victory, the yacht “Frigate” took the second place, and the yacht “Luga” took the third place.

The yacht “Orka” led by Vadim Solodnikov won in the free group, the yacht “Mariya” led by Vladimir Oleinichenko took the second place, and the yacht “Tyche” led by Alexey Kryukov took the third place.

This year, the race was dedicated to the Day of Russia, the memory of the first “Dervish” Arctic Convoy and 20 years after the foundation of Association of L-6 Cruising-and-Sailing Yachts.

The closing and awarding ceremony of winners and runners-up will take place on the 20th June at 19.00 in the Central River Yacht Club. 

Alexey Zhirov

Photos by Anton Mahanov

Background information

The “100 Miles Cup” was held for the first time in 1852, and its route has not changed ever since: it starts near the Island of Kotlin, then the yachts go around the Island of Nerva with their portside and finish near the Island of Kotlin. The length of the distance is 100 nautical miles. The representatives of St Petersburg yacht club and several English yacht clubs took part in the first “100 Miles Cup”. All in all, there were 11 boats in the first race around the Island of Nerva. The British schooner “Claymore” became the winner of that historical competition, having covered the distance of 100 miles in less than 15 hours.  

The historical “100 Miles Race” was held for the first time one year after the “100 Guineas Cup” in England, which laid the foundation of the most prestigious international regatta – the “America’s Cup”.

In 2001, the L-6 Association and the sport club of Leningrad Naval Base revived the historical tradition and since that time the “100 Miles Cup” races have been organised annually again.  

The organisers of the regatta are St Petersburg Sailing Union, L-6 Yacht Class Association, ORC Yacht Class Association. The partner of the regatta is Saint Petersburg Yacht Club.