December Yachts & Yachting
The December issue of Yachts & Yachting is out today. It includes a Design Profile I’ve written on the Gazprom Swan 60s, following a day out with the class when they were in Cowes for the world championships. It was an interesting experience, sailing with a Russian-Italian team on a Scandinavian boat on the Solent.
The structure of the class is intriguing, with energy giants Gazprom backing the class until 2017, and a number of other boats in the fleet sponsored by their major clients or subsidiaries, including the Nord Stream pipeline which transports gas from Russia to Europe. I may have watched a few too many James Bond films, but the idea of multi-million pound deals for an under-sea oil and gas pipeline being struck over a day’s yachting in glamorous Maxis has a cinematic ring to it for me.
Unfortunately the blockbuster movie I seemed to be starring in that day was ‘Bambi’. Blithely dusting off my old-faithful sailing trainers after a couple of seasons out of use, I quickly realised I was skating across the deck. My once superbly grippy soles had completely perished, and I had absolutely no traction whatsoever. On a puffy summer’s day that required plenty of roll tacking across the coachroof, I was recreating the baby-deer-on-ice scene, slip-sliding around so much I bashed up my knees and bled profusely over the beautiful minimalist deck. Time to invest in some new sailing gear…