Princess Anne: when sailing is royal passion and love for Scotland


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03_PRINCESS ANNA_IOur colleagues at Yachting World devoted six pages in their latest issue to the passion of the Princess Anna (daughter of Queen Elizabeth and II and Prince Philip) for sailing, and in particular for her boat: a Rustler 44 with which she sails together with her husband, Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence. The royal couple loves to sail among the islands of Scotland and, after being owners for 20 years of a Rustler 36, Blue Doublet, they purchased a 44-footer, Ballochbuie, in 2012 (in the same year Princess Anne was a member of the organizing committee for the London Olympic Games).


We can all imagine the busy schedule of a member of the royal family, nevertheless, Princess Anne considers sailing vacations sacred: one week in the summer and two more weeks during the year. But where does the passion for sailing of the Princess, who is famous in sports especially for her equestrian talent(she was the first member of the British royal family to take part in the Olympic Games) stem from ? Her father, Prince Philip, has always raced and was the owner of a 62-foot yawl designed by Charles Nicholson, Bloodbound: it was aboard this hull that Princess Anne learned to sail, along with her brother, Prince Charles. Every summer for seven years, they have sailed and participated in regattas in Scotland, a land where sailing is not easy because of the sudden changes in weather. Especially if, as in the case of the Princess and her husband, it is always a matter of two people sailing to their heartlands: the most remote islands and anchorages of Scotland, as far north as Stornaway and as far south as Rathlin Island. “We have no idea how many miles of sailing we did, but we certainly broke every record with the number of anchorages! All scrupulously marked with respective features in a very rich logbook.”

The change from the 36 to the 44 was dictated by “height” requirements, Sir Tim in fact could not stand well when below deck and so the couple opted for a larger and more comfortable boat, from the same yard, “because Rustlers are the most comfortable and safe boats in our opinion.” A boat Deck saloon, suitable for Scottish climate, which allows you to enjoy the beautiful landscapes in the dry when the weather turns for the worst. Accustomed to tiller steering, Princess had to find sensitivity with the wheel “with tiller steering it is easier, because you feel more easily when the boat is balanced.” With the purchase of the 44, they switched to a more modern type of sailing than they were used to aboard the 36-footer. The decision to have the mainsail wrapper on board was not taken lightly, and the couple discussed quite a bit before making the final decision. They then chose a armo cutter, electric winches, bow thruster and electronic chartplotter (although Sir Tim, as a good member of the Royal Navy , always marks his routes on charts as well, comfortably seated at the large chart table on board).

Photos taken from the August issue of Yachting World



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