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Irish Etchells Classic Short–Listed for International Award

9th January 2018
The celebrated classic small cruiser Guapa. Somewhere in there is an Etchells 22 The celebrated classic small cruiser Guapa. Somewhere in there is an Etchells 22

The vintage Etchells 22 transformed into a classic small cruiser last year by Bill Trafford of Alchemy Marine for a Crosshaven owner has been short-listed for an international award writes W M Nixon.

The superbly-finished Guapa – Spanish for “beautiful” – still sails like an Etchells. But she now looks like a very high quality miniature Swedish Skerries cruiser, with an exquisitely-crafted coachroof which can provide weekend cruising accommodation, although elegant and effortless daysailing is Guapa’s true forte.

With her teak-laid decks and appropriately classic-style McWilliam Sails, Guapa has impressed a wide range of people with vintage yacht experience, including America’s Cup superstar Dennis Conner’s classic yacht specialist Johnny Smullen, who has described her as “an amazing bit of work”.

etchells22 guapa2Halfway stage of the transformation which created Guapa. The hull has been lengthened, the sheerline has been accentuated with an increase in freeboard, and the new coachroof has been built “to Chippendale standards”. Photo: W M Nixon

Now Guapa has been short-listed for the latest annual round of awards by the international publication Classic Boat, and she’s one of the final three that have reached the run-off in the Spirit of Tradition Under 40ft category.

All details on voting are here

We would guess that many readers will want to give Guapa and Bill Trafford their support, judging by the favourable response to our stories on charting the complete transformation of this formerly well-worn Etchells 22.

Meanwhile, in his workshop near Skenakilla Crossroads in the rural heartlands of County Cork, Bill is busy on a new project - the complete transformation of an old counter-sterned Kim Holman-designed Elizabethan 29 into a new take on the Alan Buchanan-designed transom-sterned Colleen Class, which was built in Kinsale around 1950. It’s an utterly intriguing project - more of it on in the very near future.

etchells22 guapa3Guapa – “a delight to sail, and a joy to be aboard”.

Published in Etchells Team

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