What is the Classic Channel Regatta?

The Classic Channel Regatta is a leading international event in the classic sailing world:

Described by competitors in the last regatta as “The world’s most beautiful regatta” and “it is more than just a regatta – it is life enhancing!” the regatta attracts competitors from England, France, Ireland, Belgium, Holland and Germany. It will run for eight days in 2021 and sail from Dartmouth to St Helier and Paimpol – three of the English Channel’s most beautiful ports in England, the Channel Islands and Brittany.

There are normally 80 or more classic boats taking part:

All built to pre-1975 designs. Most are original and built before 1975 with a few replicas built more recently to classic designs. The oldest boat that we have had in the history of the Regatta was launched in 1886. There is a diverse range of boats of different rig, size and history, but their owners share the same passion to preserve and promote the heritage of classic yachting.

The Regatta includes a series of races:

  • The Dartmouth Classics races in Start Bay
  •  The Classic Channel Race Dartmouth – St Helier
  • The Raid des Minquiers at Jersey
  • The Classic St Helier – Paimpol Passage Race
  • The Tour de l’Île de Bréhat Race

There are also several informal parties, prizegivings and a picnic for the crews during the course of the week.

Prizes are awarded for each race and for a boat’s overall performance in the Regatta. Each boat has a handicap or ‘rating’ based on its measurements to try to provide each boat with an equal chance of winning. There is also a ‘Spirit of the Regatta’ Trophy awarded to the boat that has done most to embrace the Corinthian ethos of the regatta.

Spectator events:

There are numerous activities on the water and ashore of interest to spectators and crew-members. Classic boats in these sorts of numbers are a spectacular and beautiful sight.

  • A Parade of Sail in Dartmouth Harbour and the boats moored in port.
  • The racing in Start Bay can be seen from the shore south of Dartmouth.
  • Entry into the lock at Paimpol after the Channel Race, with music on the harbour wall.
  • The popular “Danse des Classiques” is ideal for spectators – spectator boats “Vedette de Bréhat”
    sailing from Paimpol.
  • Parade of Sail into Paimpol Harbour after the Danse des Classiques and the boats moored in port.
  • The regatta village in Paimpol with stalls and entertainment and the harbour celebrations.
  • Sightseeing trips and sports events for the crews in and around Paimpol.

The full programme of events can be seen here.