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Stan the Man & The Magnificent Seven

Preview 2024 Superyacht Challenge Antigua

The 13th edition of the Superyacht Challenge Antigua (SYCA) opens for registration on Monday 11th March with five days of spectacular racing scheduled from 13-17 March.

The invitational event is held in the spectacular waters of Antigua with laid-back social events in Nelson’s Dockyard. The Superyacht Challenge has one clear objective; to provide all the facilities to stage an ideal event for an exclusive selection of superyachts. Seven yachts will be competing this year ranging from the mighty 218ft ketch Hetairos to the Oyster 82 Zig Zag.

2024 SYCA Entries

Stan Pearson at the helm of Rebecca. Thanks to Cory Silken ©

Stan the Man

This year’s edition is a special one, with tributes paid to one of the founders of the Superyacht Challenge Antigua. Stan Pearson ‘sailed on’ just a few weeks before the regatta was to start. For over 30 years, ‘Stan the Man’ was a massive part of the development of yacht racing in Antigua and around the world. As a founder of the Superyacht Challenge Antigua, Stan would have wanted nothing more than the outstanding regatta to go ahead as planned.

The sailing community is welcomed to a fond farewell to Stan Pearson.

Friday 15th March 1800 AST at The Capstans in Nelson’s Dockyard, English Harbour, Antigua.

2024 Superyacht Challenge Antigua | The Magnificent Seven

Adela vs Hetairos

This will be the seventh regatta for Adela, the 182ft (55.5m) Dykstra schooner, skippered by Greg Perkins has won her class on two occasions and was awarded The Gosnell Trophy in 2017.

HETAIROS © Claire Matches

Hetairos returns for her second regatta, the 218ft (66.45m) Dykstra/Reichel Pugh ketch is skippered by Graham Newton. In 2022, Hetairos scorched round Antigua to set a new record for the 50-mile race of 3 Hours 46 Mins 08 Secs won. Hetairos won her class for the regatta to finish off a fantastic series. The promise of a mouth-watering battle of the big guns is expected between Adela and Hetairos, especially after ORCsy time correction.

Baltic 110 Zemi

The largest sloop this year is the 110ft (33.5m) Malcolm McKeon sloop Zemi, skippered by Hjalmar Winbladh. Zemi will be taking part in her first regatta and is the second Baltic built McKeon design to compete at the SYCA, the 112ft sloop Liara raced in 2020. Zemi has the unmistakable McKeon style transom with a full interior designed by Andreas Martin-Löf Arkitekter.

FREYA © Ted Martin

Swan 90s Freya & Hummingbird

The first SYCA head to head between two Nautor Swan 90s from the drawing board on Frers Yacht Design will take place this year. Hummingbird skippered by Josh Hill is taking part for the first time. Don Macpherson’s 90ft Freya, skippered by Joph Carter, will be taking part in her fourth regatta. Freya has made the podium on three occasions. Both Freya and Hummingbird will be racing with world class sailors on board for a Swan 90 match race.

NAMUUN © Rick Tomlinson

The 108ft (33m) Hoek designed sloop Namuun will be skippered by Tom Aiken. Namuun has classic lines with a wooden hull, deck saloon and superstructure. A Truly Classic Design launched in 2012, Namuun weighs in at nearly 100 tonnes and will relish strong upwind conditions for the regatta.

Oyster 82 Zig Zag

John McMonigall’s Oyster 82 Zig Zag is skippered by Carl Raynes. This will be Zig Zag’s eighth regatta in a row, including winning The Gosnell Trophy last year and in 2020. From the drawing board of Humphreys Yacht Design. Zig Zag is the smallest yacht at the regatta but renowned for racing as hard as any of the largest yachts in the fleet, as well as partying very competitively as well!