Prima 38 One-Design success celebrated

The Prima 38 One-Design Class was launched 20 years ago in 1998, and the first boat ‘Diva', owned by the late and much missed Ken Trench, made the trip to Cork Week where she took Class 1 by storm.

Skippered by Jonty Sherwill, the excellent crew included owner Ken Trench, the Prima’s naval architect Stephen Jones, Tim Thubron, James Hutchinson, Gordon ‘Flash’ Bonney (bow), Emily Prest, Eleanor Hay, Fleur Oswald and Ros Urwin.

With no time for practice the team opted for a pin end start in Race 1 and crossed the fleet on port to begin a 1,2,1,(7),1,2,1,2 scoreline, the first win so convincing that the press and TV arrived to interview the crew!

The Prima 38 was co-designed by Stephen Jones and Jonty Sherwill and built by Mike Eaton at Seaquest Yachts in Cornwall. The concept began as a 36 footer but grew to accommodate the interior space requested by the first four owners who signed up for boats having seen the concept drawings. Ken Trench, Rodney Emberson, John and Sue Bainbridge, and Chris Bull had all been successful Sigma 33 owners.

With its carbon fibre mast, deep draft keel, comfortable cruiser/racer cockpit and stylish interior the Prima 38 won the RYA/ BMIF Yacht of Year Award in 1998 and achieved much success in both inshore and offshore competition. Twenty-five were built before production ceased, a great boat and no doubt still enjoyed by many of those who sail them today.