Elegant lady Anita from Germany to join ÅF Offshore Race 2019

2019-05-27 - ÅF Offshore Race S/Y Anita is a beautiful 12mR from Germany that will participate in this year’s ÅF Offshore Race in the Classic class. The experienced crew with a fascinating story will be interesting to follow on their way to Visby and back.

Anita was built in 1938 for the German Margarine producer Mr. Rau who also drove a whale fishing Company at the time. Mr. Rau himself was not a sailor but loved the atmosphere around the regattas. He commissioned Anita (named after his wife) as sister ship to “Inga” at the Abeking and Rassmussen Shipyard near Bremen. They were the first two 12mR boats build in Germany according to the 3rd Metre Rule from 1933. The two sister ships competed the first time at Kieler woche 1938 against the new English 12mR “Blue Marlin” who turned out to be faster and with a more experienced crew. 

After a few years of racing in Kiel and the Öresund-area, Anita was stored ashore in a shed for many years. In the mid 1950´s the boat was converted to a yawl and sold to new owners from the Rhein Main Area. They recognized that Anita was too big and expensive to be sailed as a private yacht, so they decided to build up a sailing consortium around the boat. The new consortium had no desire to race, they used Anita for longer cruising journeys. The following years Anita logged around 300.000 NM, going around Iceland and across the Atlantic Ocean multiple times. In 1996 Anita almost capsized in very rough weather on the North Sea but survived without severe damage. A clip from the rescue can be viewed here. 

In 2008 Anita was no longer in a seaworthy condition and this started a new era for the yacht.  The old cruising consortium was put to rest and a new team of sailors managed to raise donations to get Anita restored. This was done at the Gilleleje Boatyard in Denmark in 2011/12. The new team also decided to get her back in racing condition and in 2017 Anita was reconfigured to a sloop again. Today, Anita is under sail around 110 days per year with a very dedicated team of about 15 skippers.

We welcome Anita to Stockholm 2019 with skipper Bernard Frieling and his crew.

Text: Patrick Ståhle
Foto: Sommerwerck Photography