'We are expecting great competitive racing in the biggest class event this year,' commented Andrzej ROJEK (USA), owner of the Swan 45 Better Than. Winner of the Swan 45 Class in Key West Race Week last January, ROJEK is hopeful that he and his team, including his 22 year old son Marcin as relief helmsman, will continue their winning streak. 'We will try to compete as hard as we can, but we recognize that we are sailing against some of the best sailors in the country, and in the world,' he said.
With an ever competitive fleet including two Swan 56's, James CONNELLY's (GBR) Aqua Equinox and Frank SAVAGE's (USA) Lolita, Carel PAUUWE's (NED) Swan 60 Marie Blue, and the brand new Swan 601 Moneypenny, competition among the classes looks to be tougher than ever.
Clayton DEUTSCH (USA), owner and helmsman of the Swan 68 Chippewa, will have North Sail's Jack SLATTERY onboard as tactician. Returning to the Swan American Regatta for the third consecutive year, he is obviously a huge fan of the Newport event. 'Sailing against other Swans is always fun and extremely competitive,' said DEUTSCH, who has won three Swan Challenges. 'We've really had to work hard to up our game at the Swan regattas, with so many pro and America's Cup sailors taking part. The camaraderie is always great, with lots of entertainment shoreside and I'm sure this year will be no exception.'
The Swans will be divided into four classes with Class A, B and D all racing under Nautor's Swan Rating System (NSR) and Class C encompassing the competitive one-design Swan 45's, with nine boats on the starting line. A maximum of nine races is scheduled over five days of sailing, with one discard (if more than five races are sailed). The Regatta Village - based at the Newport Shipyard in downtown Newport - will be a hub of activity, with awards being presented each evening to the overall winner of each class.
ClubSwan, at the centre of the Regatta Village, will be where crews congregate after racing to discuss tactics and share stories of the day's competition.
On Monday, 25 July, the Rolex Swan American Regatta will be featured on ESPN's 'SportsCenter Across America,' a 50-state-in-50-days summer tour of the popular sports news programme. SportsCenter Across America begins 17 July and continues for 50 straight days, highlighting a sporting event in a different state each day through until 4 September.