Bermuda-Bound: Polaris, Sydney 47

December 18, 2020


Polaris, packed for a long sea voyage.

Polaris is a dark blue Sydney 47, recently acquired by nine-time Newport Bermuda racer Will Passano, a Cruising Club of America member hailing from Gibson Island, Md. The new owner had been looking for a 42- to 45-footer but bought this “rocketship” sight unseen (exceptFacetime) from Noel Cornish, commodore of the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia and a successful Sydney Hobart racer. The price was right, the boat came with a stellar sail and equipment inventory, and it had the Bermuda Race layout Passano wanted—nav station to starboard, galley to port.

Polaris (formerly St. Jude) loads aboard a giant car carrier for Stateside delivery.

Passano says he and his crew of friends from Maryland had outgrown Carina, his well-prepared J/37 (second in class in 2016). He’ll sail the new boat with a crew of 10, up from eight on the J/37, which is actively for sale. “The biggest adjustment for our crew,” he said, “will be the bigger sails and faster speeds.” All are looking forward to arriving in Bermuda a day earlier than on previous trips.

Polaris (formerly St. Jude) arrives safely in Baltimore.

Polaris (formerly St. Jude) arrived over Thanksgiving in Baltimore on a car carrier that came via Japan with 6500 cars. She will be reassembled in Annapolis, sail locally in the spring, and then compete in the Annapolis to Newport, Marblehead Halifax and Edgartown races.  If Covid restrictions permit, Polaris will also head south in a year’s time for the Caribbean 600 before returning to the States in time for the 2022 Newport Bermuda Race.

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