Farr 40 Worlds finale

Dana Paxton look back at the protest filled racing in the Bahamasa
In the end, it was all about the man and his boat rather than the place, but when the Farr 40 Class Association first decided to hold its Rolex-sponsored 2002 World Championship at Atlantis, it turned more than a few heads. The Bahamas resort, located on the aptly named Paradise Island, is a mind-boggling water theme playground that recreates the Lost City of Atlantis and provides the world's largest marine habitat, second only to Mother Nature, for more than 50,000 marine animals living in 34 acres of waterscape. The 25 Farr 40s that competed in the event were efficiently accommodated and welcomed by The Marina at Atlantis, and soon after they arrived for the MeesPierson Bahamian National Championship that preceded the Worlds, the highly pedigreed sailboats looked at home among the 200-foot megayachts surrounding them. Italy's Nerone, the Farr 40 European champion co-owned by Antonio Migliori and Massimo Mezzaroma, won the Bahamian Nationals and established itself as a favorite for the November 13-16 Rolex Farr 40 World Championship along with second-place finisher Defiant, skippered by Canada's Rolex Sailor of the Year Terry McLaughlin (Toronto). But it was Defiant that would go on to make headlines for most of the Worlds and Le Renard, skippered by Steve Phillips that would prevail ultimately as the winner. Over four days of competition in poster-perfect sailing conditions, Phillips turned in single-digit finishes in all but one of 10 races, which proved the key to his success. "It was our strategy to stay in the top ten in every race," said Phillips, "because the teams here are tremendous. We took a 17th in the first race, but after that we sailed consistently and we stayed out of trouble." Phillips, the current Farr 40 East Coast champion, credited his tactician Mark Reynolds, a Rolex Yachtsman of the Year and three-time