The Bucket started 25 years ago in Nantucket as a low-key gentleman’s race with a mere seven boats. Since, the phenomenon of the Bucket has transcended racing. It is a giant commotion and celebration of all things yachting—wind, water, elegance, luxury, freedom and unadulterated fun. This year the Bucket organizers decided to cap the event at 47 boats, the largest number ever, leaving about a half-dozen boats on the waiting list. With such big boats racing in close proximity, safety is of the utmost importance. Veteran race chairman Peter Craig and the entire Bucket committee insist on it.
The organization of the several different classes at this year’s event was superbly orchestrated with the usual staggered start, typical of a pursuit race. There are always complaints about Jim Teeters’ ratings and handicapping, but a few said the handicapping this year was the best ever. The Regatta itself is certainly a focal point, and getting more competitive every year. The exciting starts, side-by-side sailing and downwind panoply of spinnakers are breathtaking. For the cognoscenti, it is no surprise that the shore-side prices are breathtaking too. Yet, for this one magical week, the real world be damned. Yachting rules. St. Barths is the “it” place and life is good.
Jill Bobrow, Dana Jinkins and Alessandro Vitelli have collaborated on a new book celebrating 25 years of Bucket Regatta. “The Bucket Book, A Celebration of Megayacht Racing” is available on the Bucket’s site bucketregattas.com/25thbook.html. For more information on the bucket, visit bucketregattas.com.
LES Grande Dames/Cruising
Les Elegantes/Classic Class