After an absence of 13 years, the 5.5 Metre Class is making a welcome return to Hankø YC in Norway for its Scandinavian Gold Cup, Class Cups and World Championship from Monday 27 June to Tuesday 5 July.
The Scandinavian Gold Cup runs from 27 to 30 June with just one boat representing each county, plus the holder.
The nice feature of this event, in an increasingly regimented sailing world, is that the competition rules are unique in sailing.
Only race wins counting and the first to three wins in the winner. Furthermore, any boat that has not won a race after three races is eliminated.
Therefore it could all be over in three races, or could be stretched to a maximum of seven races.
Kristian Norgaard’s Artemis team have won the last three editions and will definitely be the one to beat.
However New Moon II (BAH 24, Modern, Mark Holowesko, Christoph Burger, Peter Vlasov) will surely make a strong challenge.
Peter Morton’s new Jean Genie will also be one to watch, even though he has been unable to attend, the boat will be sailed by Laser ace Elliot Hanson along with Andrew Palfrey and Sam Haines.
This boat won the Alpen Cup earlier this year with consummate ease, so it will be interesting to see it perform.
In parallel with this the Class Cups for Classics and Evolutions will be sailed before the World Championship begins on Friday 1 July.
Nergaard has won the world title the last two times it was held and holds the record for the most titles in the class, but with 24 boats on the line it will be a tough challenge to claim it for the third time in a row.
Mark Holowlesko, skipper on New Moon II will be racing in Hankø for the first tme in 43 years. The New Moon team won the World Championship in 2018, but have yet to take the Scandinavian Gold Cup.
5.5 Metre Class Schedule in Hanko:
Mon 27 to Wed 29 June – Scandinavian Gold Cup, Royal Kaag Classic Cup, Hankö Evolution Cup
Thu 30 June – Reserve day Scandinavian Gold Cup
Thu 30 June – Opening Ceremony for World Championship
Fri 1 to Tue 5 July – World Championship Racing
Tue 5 July – World Championship Prizegiving
Hankø is an iconic and traditional venue for the class having hosted the class on 16 previous occasions since 1953. It is steeped in the heritage of the class with a history of many famous battles for these prestigious trophies over the years.
Originally due to be held here in 2021, the events were postponed a year due to Covid and will take place as part of the 2022 Grundig Hankø Race Week.