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The Eight Metre World Cup is our oldest tradition in modern times. Unquestionably this trophy has done more for the good of our class then any other. If possible we race for the World Cup every year, and each year, the Class chooses a different venue. This way boats that are not in a position to travel get the opportunity to race in their home waters, while on the other side, the foreign boats take the opportunity to race and enjoy waters they most likely would otherwise not visit. The Eight Metre World Cup is the event for which owners and yards target to have restorations completed. For those boats in good condition, I have yet to meet an owner who didn’t put on that extra coat of varnish just to make the girl look even better at the ball.

The 8-Metre World Cup was donated by Eugene van Voorhis from Rochester, NY, USA to the Royal Northern Yacht Club as a perpetual trophy to be raced for in the 8-Metre Class. It all started when Eugene commissioned the breakthrough 8-Metre Iroquois from the board of Sparkman & Stephens in 1967. Iroquois was built as a challenger for the Canada’s Cup, a race that would unfortunately never be in the 8-Metres again. Owning three Eights; Thisbe, Iskareen and Iroquois, Eugene decided to sell Iskareen and the best home seemed to be back at the Royal Northern Yacht Club in Scotland. So in 1969, without knowing if a prospective buyer would indeed take his boat, Eugene shipped his Iskareen over to the Clyde. With this opportunity at hand, he took up sailing in these beautiful waters. One evening, after a good sail with fellow Eights and wee drink in the cockpit, the idea was born to start a new trophy for the Eights. At this point even a Scot could hardly walk straight. Encouraged by a wee Scottish drizzle, it was soon agreed to better “drink the other half" inside the Club. Just before dawn the meeting was adjourned but not after the men had unanimously agreed that the new trophy should be named the 8-Metre World Cup and was to be shaped in such a way that it could serve a good drink. And so it happened, Eugene flew to Tiffany in New York to find a suitable trophy. Although not too common in the house of Tiffany, Eugene tested the different models to see if they were indeed suitable to drink from and the best was ordered, engraved, and would become known as the International Eight Metre World Cup. Armed with the silver bowl Eugene returned to the Royal Northern Yacht Club in 1970.

Scotland offers some of the finest sailing and sure enough, that first morning was a prime example. In a flying gale joined by so-called horizontal rain, Eugene wandered over to the Club to see if races would take place. Listening to his friends on the way saying, "Morning Gene, great day for a boat race don't you think?", he decided to spare himself the embarrassment of the wrong question and looked for a pair of Wellingtons. And so it happened on that day in 1970, a group of Eight Metre yachts gathered on the Clyde to race for a trophy, which was to become a new tradition in the class. The Johan Anker design Silja, owned by the Scotsman Dr. Weir, won the first World Cup and Iskareen made a close second. After the event Iskareen was sold to Erik Maxwell, a man who became famous for his collection of full size trains. Eric already had a 12 and a 6-Metre  (Sceptre and Gosling) and Iskareen topped the collection of Metre boats.

 

Winners of the World Cup

Year Location Yacht Owner Country
1970 The Clyde - Scotland Silja Dr. H.J. Weir Scotland
1975 Sandham - Sweden Silja Krister Ahlström & Joni Hertell Finland
1978 Helsinki - Finland Iskareen Per Wermelin Sweden
1982 Visby - Sweden Iroquois Eugene van Voorhis USA
1983 Hankø - Norway Iroquois Eugene van Voorhis USA
1984 Toronto - Canada Octavia Elwin Catheart Canada
1985 Rochester - USA Golden Feather Harry Voss USA
1986 Cannes - France Gitana Sixty Baron Edmund Rothschild France
1987 Helsinki - Finland Spirit Per Wermelin Sweden
1988 Sandhamn - Sweden Gefion Sigfrid Svensson Sweden
1989 Toronto - Canada Gefion Sigfrid Svensson Sweden
1990 Rochester - USA Gefion Sigfrid Svensson Sweden
1991 Port Credit - Canada Gefion Bryan Gooderham Canada
1992 Sandhamn - Sweden Spirit Per Wermelin Sweden
1993 Helsinki - Finland Sarissa Ron Palm USA
1994 Cannes - France Gefion Sigfrid Svensson Sweden
1995 Medemblik - Holland Natural Hank Stuart USA
1996 Sodus Bay - USA Sarissa Ron Palm USA
1998 Geneva - Switzerland Yquem Jean Fabre Switzerland
1999 Rochester NY - USA Golden Feather Eric Voss USA
2000 Pt Santo Stefano - Italy Gefion Benoit de Gorski Switzerland
2002 Helsinki – Finland Fleur de Lys Gaston Schmalz France
2003 La Trinite-sur-Mer - France Fleur de Lys Gaston Schmalz France
2004 Geneva – Switzerland Lafayette Jos Fruytier Holland
2005 Toronto – Canada Hollandia Ruud van Hilst & Jos Fruytier Holland
2006 Lindau – Germany Sarissa Peter Groh Switzerland
2007 The Clyde – Scotland Aluette Iris Metten Switzerland
2008 Hankø - Norway Aluette Iris Metten Switzerland
2009 Hyeres - France Lafayette Murdoch McKillop Scotland
2010 Toronto - Canada Aluette Iris Metten Switzerland
2011 Flensburg - Germany Hollandia Ruud van Hilst & Jos Fruytier Holland
2012 Cowes - England Lafayette Murdoch McKillop Scotland
2013 Helsinki - Finland Hollandia Ruud van Hilst Holland

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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