Races around the world

Fast cars, horses and boats. Racing tidbits from around the world.

     Print Edition: June 27, 2010

Ocean's First

Good weather and calm seas in the North Atlantic Ocean in June means that the Newport-Bermuda Race 2010 is on track. June 18 marks the beginning of this high speed dash across the tricky Gulf Stream from Newport to the Bermuda Isles. The race stretches across a distance of 635 nautical miles (approximately 1,175 km) and typically takes between three and six days to complete. With a history dating back to more than a hundred years, the first race was held in 1906.

But it was only after 1926 that it became a regular feature. Any serious sailor worth his salt gives this race a try at some point or the other, since the 'Lighthouse Trophy' that goes to the winner is a much coveted one. The unique trophy was commissioned in 1954, eight years after the race restarted following the end of World War II. Originally conceptualised as a race for amateur enthusiasts rather than professional sailors, even today over 80 per cent of the sailors and crew is selected from amateur entries.

Who's the Boss?

Top-end luxury brands like Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Hugo Boss have always been associated with a lifestyle and not merely luxury products. Little wonder then, that Hugo Boss recently unveiled a state-of-the-art yacht called the HUGO BOSS IMOCA 60, a monohull yacht Open 60 sailboat, at Gosport in Hampshire, England. This racing yacht is a collaboration between the company and renowned boat designer Juan Kouyoumdjian, who has created a boat that is as versatile as it is stunning. The yacht has been been custom made for the round-the-world sailor Alex Thomson who plans to race it at various sailing events, starting with the Barcelona World Race later this year.

Triple Crown Finale

If thundering hoofs and tight breeches are your thing, don't miss the last of three premier horse races (the Triple Crown) to be held in the first week of June. The Belmont Stakes-traditionally held after the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes-will take place at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. Inaugurated in 1867, this is one of the most respected horse races in the world.

Retro Charm

Summer's mellow warmth (in the cooler countries) is the best time to air some elderly automotive champions in some of the most beautiful locations in the world. The massive Coronado Trans Am race is slated for September this year; last month saw the staging of the Bergamo Historic Gran Prix to celebrate 75 years of the Bergamasco GP. On June 5 and 6, there's the Sonoma Historic Motorsports festival at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma California. With 375 vintage racing cars taking part, this is as close as possible to paradise for racing enthusiasts. The oldest car on the tracks will be a 1914 Ford while the youngest is a 1991 Roush Mustang.

The New Superteam?

Talk of a deadly duo! Current F1 team leader McLaren's star drivers Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton are having a fantastic season, with many podium finishes and top of the chart rankings. Their team's success is making people draw comparisons with McLaren's former driver line-ups-Alain Prost and Ayrton Senna. While Button's calm, strategy-led driving makes him stylistically close to Prost, Hamilton's pace and dynamism is similar to that of his hero, Senna.

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