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Etchells 22 Super De Luxe Heads For Crosshaven

18th May 2017
Released into the daylight at last – Bill Trafford at Skenakilla with his latest creation Released into the daylight at last – Bill Trafford at Skenakilla with his latest creation

As Johnny Smullen, boatbuilder to America’s Cup legend Dennis Conner has put it, the transformation job on a tired old Etchells 22 is simply amazing writes W M Nixon

The well-worn white hull of a standard Etchells 22 went into Bill Trafford's shed near Skenakilla Crossroads in March last year. And this week, the gorgeous dark blue cruising sloop Guapa (it’s Spanish for beautiful) emerged. See our April progress report here.

etchells22 cruiser2Elegance is the hallmark

Next Wednesday she’ll be arriving in Crosshaven for her mast to be stepped and new sails fitted from Des McWilliam. But the boat is so utterly transformed, with judiciously-raised topsides and an extremely elegant Scandinavian-style coachroof and comfortable accommodation within, that Bill naturally wondered if his calculations as to the new location of the waterline were accurate.

Indeed, like every boat-transformer, he wondered if she’d float. So rather than give her a totally-untested debut at Crosshaven, Guapa was quietly towed up the road to Doneraile, where the equipe stopped outside the Townhouse Tea Room for some sustenance, as Bill’s wife works there (and it’s Georgina Campbell-recommended).

etchells22 cruiser2Quick sustenance stop as viewed from the Townhouse tea Room in Donraile

Then it was on up the road to Adare and down to Askeaton off the Shannon Estuary, where Cyril Ryan at his boatyard had the crane ready, and Guapa had her first splash in complete privacy. No leaks. And she floated perfectly on her marks. All being well, next Wednesday in Crosshaven, you’re in for a treat.

etchells22 cruiser2At Askeaton, Guapa floats to her marks

Published in Etchells

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