By William Mills
During Panerai’s British Classic Week at Cowes in July 2016 I was fortunate to interview Tim Blackman of Classic Yacht Infanta, a 50ft built in the USA.
Tim Blackman said;
“The boat is called Infanta. She was built in 1947 in New York.
I’ve only sailed classic yachts all my life when I was a young man they were wooden boats but now classic yacht sailing is kind of really where it is at because it is much more esoteric past time and it is much more fun.
The event is extraordinary because everybody you see at this event has stepped over the line they have taken a historic yacht they have brought it back to life spent much more money on it than they will ever get back it reflects throughout the whole event and the people are great.
I don’t know of anybody who has made any money at all out of classic yachting it is simply that these yachts would have disappeared they are our heritage, These yachts were built in the 30’s, 50’s, 60’s, and we are in Cowes which is the cradle of yachting where it all started and some of these boats were built in Cowes. This is where the real fun is.
Infanta was built in 1947. She is a Philip Rhodes design for a well known journalist in New York at the time and she was raced and sailed in America for years. We bought her in Cape Cod about six years ago in 2006.
We have restored her, raced her here and we have also sailed her back to the States, the Caribbean , we’ve been to Greece, in Venice, Malta. Everywhere she goes people know the boat and want to take part.
When we got her she was sound, but like many of these boats the systems were out of date, or worn out, and the wiring and everything like that. Someone had done a rebuilt in the 1980’s who I met in the Caribbean and he came on board, and the boat carries such a carry such fantastic history charisma and providence with them. They are a joy to own.”