If you plan to come and watch the 21 boat Fife fleet this summer, we hope that this page will provide you with useful information to help you get the best out of this quinquennial spectacle.
For the full Regatta Schedule, please click here.
The first race for 2013 will see the fleet race round Great Cumbrae. Split into 3 classes, the larger yachts will aim go round twice, and the smaller boats once. Please note, the course will either be set as clockwise or anti-clockwise, dependent on wind direction.
If you are watching from land, Largs Yacht Haven will provide the best vantage point to see the yachts start and finish. Or, why not rent a bicycle in Millport, Great Cumbrae, and follow the fleet round.
If you plan to watch racing afloat, we kindly ask you to respect the racing fleet – we expect to implement a Safety Zone, as in 2008, to ensure the safety and enjoyment of both competitors and spectators. Back to top
Race 2 sees the fleet sail to Rothesay Bay, Bute. Again starting off Largs Yacht Haven, the larger yachts will skirt the mainland up to either Wemyss Bay or Inverkip (dependant on wind strength), before heading west (orange line on course below). The smaller yachts will take a more direct course (blue line).
There should be great spectating opportunities at Largs, Skelmorlie, Wemyss Bay and Inverkip (wind dependant) on the mainland, then in Rothesay, Bute for the race finish. Again, we politely request that watchers afloat respect the racing yachts, especially during the start period. Back to top
Monday morning sees the fleet cruise through the East Kyle of Bute, carefully navigating the narrows at Burnt Islands, before anchoring at Tighnabruaich.
The village of Tighnabruaich, and Argyll’s Secret Coast, are hosting a street party with local food, games, tug-o-war competition and Scottish skiff rowing race. A Local Producers’ Market will be held in front of the Tighnabruaich Hotel. More information can be found on Argyll’s Secret Coast website. Back to top
Race day 3 – half-way point of the regatta – the fleet start in beautiful Kames Bay, heading south. Larger yachts will round Inchmarnock to starboard, then head to the finish situated off Portavadie Marina (orange course on diagram below). Smaller yachts will round Ardlamont Point then turn north-west (blue course).
The penultimate race sees the fleet leave Portavadie Marina then head back to Largs, rounding Garroch Head, Bute, through ‘The Tan’ (between Great Cumbrae and Little Cumbrae), before finishing off Largs Yacht Haven.
Millport, Great Cumbrae, and Largs should provide great vantage points for the returning fleet, and those viewers afloat rarely get such a beautiful photography opportunity as the Fife fleet with the stunning crags of Arran as a backdrop. Back to top
For the final race, we will again see a race course first used in 1891 – The King’s Course. Boats will start in Largs Channel, then head in an anti-clockwise direction around three marks (larger yachts, orange course) or direct to the NW mark (smaller yachts, blue course).
The start line will be located just to the north of Largs Pier, offering spectators on Largs promenade an excellent view of the race start and finish. The coast road north of Largs should also provide great spectating points, as should the east coast road on the Isle of Bute.
Spectators afloat should be aware of the Cumbrae Ferry which will be operating to the south of the start/finish area. It has right of way under local by-law. Again, please respect the competitors who are racing for regatta placings, and may have limited maneuverability. Back to top
As you will be aware, classic William Fife yachts are graceful machines, but with their complex rigging, long keels and large overhangs, they do need substantial space in order to be able to manoeuvre safely, especially during race starts.
Due to the high number of spectator craft that we expect at the race starts in Largs Channel, we may respectfully request that spectator craft vacate an area to windward and leeward of the start line, before and after each start, to avoid collisions and allow fair racing for competitors.
There is a diagram below which highlights this Safety Zone, which extends some 200 metres to leeward, and 50 metres to windward of the start line. Marks may be laid at the leeward corners, as per the diagram.
We appreciate your cooperation with this, and hope it ensures competitors and spectators alike will enjoy the spectacle in a safe and relaxing way.
As with previous years, spectators will have the opportunity to purchase regatta clothing and memorabilia, including the beautiful Official Programme, from our travelling shop (as well as from our Online Shop). The shop will be located at each regatta venue (Largs Yacht Haven, Rothesay, Tighnabruaich and Portavadie). Back to top