Les Crane gushes about Bermuda as host of International 505 World Championships
Les Crane is thrilled to see Bermuda host the 2021 International 505 Class World Championship, which he is confident will be a success.
The ten-race series showcasing the high-performance dinghy will be held from October 27 to November 5.
The championship is being organised by the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club and will be preceded by a Pre-Worlds Regatta consisting of six races.
“It’s going to be exciting,” Crane, the event chairman and former RBYC commodore, said. “We expect somewhere from 60 to 80 boats. At this point, we’ve got 39 entries and a lot of enthusiasm for it.”
He added: “Tourism [Bermuda Tourism Authority] has been behind us and supporting us right from the start and Gosling’s has agreed to sponsor some of our parties. It should bring 200 to 250 visitors to Bermuda.
“Most of the boats will be shipped here in containers and the City of Hamilton has been very helpful with us.”
Crane’s daughter, AJ, and son-in-law, Ted Conrads, will be among the racing fleet that will compete on the Great Sound.
“Bermuda is such a fabulous place for any sailing and has a huge history of dinghy sailing,” Crane said.
The International 505 Class is a one-design double-handed planning sailing dinghy, with spinnaker, utilising a trapeze for the crew.
The high-performance boat will plane upwind wind speeds of ten knots or more.
“It’s just a great class and the interesting thing with the 505 is the age range of the competitors,” Crane said. “There will be people in their twenties and people almost 70 competing.”
Bermuda will be hosting the championship for the first time in more than four decades and second overall.
“The last time we hosted it was in 1975 and it was a great success,” Crane added. “It’s a class that was very popular in Bermuda in the 1970s and early 1980s and we’re keen to see people get interested in it again.”
Then, England’s John Loveday and Lewis Dann were crowned champions.
The 2020 event, due to be held last August in Torekov, Sweden, was cancelled because of the global Covid-19 pandemic.
“We were originally focused on doing the event in 2020 but there was an interest out of Sweden and they jumped ahead of us,” Crane said. “So we slipped back to 2021, which, of course, given what’s happened, we ended up being very gratuitous.”
Mike Martin and crew Adam Lowry, of the United States, won the 2019 championship held in Freemantle, Australia.