Since 1983, every year the classic International Eight Metre yachts race for what is by far the most prestigious Trophy in their class. Very few in the class know the story and the deed of gift of the Sira Cup. With the help of Ralph Reimann I have gathered the available information. I hope that we will be able to continue to race for decades to come in the true spirit of our wonderful Eight Metre Class in and at all time the SIRA Cup will be granted to the winning yacht respecting the wishes of the late King of Norway Olav V and the late Erik Anker, son of the great Norwegian yacht designer Johan Anker.
The deed of gift
"It has been a pronounced wish that the change of rules resolved last year should not have a too destructing effect on the 8mR´s constructed according to the past rule. KNS have therefore in agreement with IEMA donated a cup to be named SIRA Cup, donated July 19, 1983 by his Majesty King Olav V to be raced for by all recognised 8mR yachts designed and built before 1960 and answering to the rule of the old 8mR requirements. The SIRA Cup shall be held by IEMA and raced for in accordance with above and detailed instructions from IEMA. if possible at the same time as the World Cup.
July 26, 1983."
The story behind the SIRA Cup
In 1939, the then Crown Prince of Norway Olav, was travelling in the U.S.A. with his wife, Crown Princess of Norway Martha. In his absence the great Norwegian yacht designer Johan Anker sailed the Crown Prince’s Eight Metre Sira in the Kattegat Cup for that year, which Sira had also won the year before in Marstand. Young Erik Anker was on board as a crew member. Subsequent to the Kattegat Cup in 1939, during the national Championships, Erik’s father had to go away to Oslo for a few days and young Erik Anker was allowed to Skipper Sira and won the series and the Cup, established by K.N.S.
When Crown Prince Olav returned from the USA he graciously allowed young Erik Anker to keep the Cup as a souvenir. For 44 years, from 1939 to 1983 the Cup was under the tender care of Eva, Erik´s wife. During the Eight Metre World Cup races at Hankø, Norway in 1983, His Majesty King Olav V and Erik Anker generously decided to donate the Cup to the best "vintage" Eight Metre yacht designed and built before 1960 as a sentimental gesture and to keep the "vintage" class yachts going.
As an aside, although not specifically stated in the letter of Erik Anker, the grapevine has it that the only one who did not wholeheartedly support the idea was Erik’s wife who, for 44 years, had polished the Cup and carefully tended to its prominent display in their living room.
Winners of the SIRA Cup
|1983||Hankø - Norway||Vision||Robin Clarke||C.E. Nicholson||1930|
|1984||RCYC - Canada||Vision||Robin Clarke||C.E. Nicholson||1930|
|1985||Rochester - USA||Vision||Robin Clarke||C.E. Nicholson||1930|
|1986||Cannes - France||Ayana||Walter Latscha||F. Camatte||1947|
|1987||Helsinki - Finland||Wye||Sigfrid Svensson||C.E. Nicholson||1935|
|1988||Sandham - Sweden||Wanda||Lasse Björk||Tore Holm||1937|
|1989||RCYC - Canada||Venture II||Lorne Corley||E.A. Shuman||1938|
|1990||Rochester - USA||Venture II||Lorne Corley||E.A. Shuman||1938|
|1991||PCYC - Canada||Venture II||Lorne Corley||E.A. Shuman||1938|
|1992||Sandham - Sweden||Isabel||Bo Persson||Gustav Estlander||1928|
|1993||Helsinki - Finland||Andromeda||Ola & Ulf Nilsson||Arvid Laurin||1947|
|1994||Cannes - France||Vision||Eric Mallet||C.E. Nicholsen||1930|
|1995||Medemblik - Holland||Vision||Eric Mallet||C.E. Nicholsen||1930|
|1996||Sodus Bay - USA||Iskareen||Ralph Reimann||Olin Stephens||1939|
|1998||Geneva - Switzerland||Vision||Eric Mallet||C.E. Nicholson||1930|
|1999||Rochester - USA||Norseman||Cedric G. E. Gyles||William J. Roue||1930|
|2000||Porto St.Stefano Italy||Vision||Eric Mallet||C.E. Nicholson||1930|
|2002||NJK – Helsinki||Bona||Dr. Giovanni Mogna||Baglietto||1934|
|2003||SNT – France||Bona||Dr. Giovanni Mogna||Baglietto||1934|
|2004||SNG – Switzerland||Cutty Tou||Alain & Gilles Minos||C.E. Nicholson||1930|
|2005||RCYC Toronto||Iskareen||Ralph Reimann||Olin Stephens||1939|
|2006||Lindau, Germany||Froya||Peter Groh||Bjarne Aas||1939|
|2007||The Clyde, Scotland||Saskia||John & Micheal Stephen||William Fife III||1931|
|2008||Hankö, Norway||Sira||His Majesty The King of Norway Harald V||Johan Anker||1938|
|2009||Hyeres, France||Severn||Fred Meyer||William Fife III||2009|
|2010||Toronto, Canada||Raven||Mark DeCelles and Richard Self||Alfred Mylne & Sir Thomas Glen-Coats||1938|