Endeavour (yacht)

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Yacht Endeavour Skippered by D Ramey Logan.jpg
Endeavour at Long Beach, CA in 1996
Yacht club  Royal Yacht Squadron
Nation  United Kingdom
Class J-class
Designer(s) Charles Ernest Nicholson
Builder Camper and Nicholsons
Gosport, United Kingdom
Owner(s) Sir Thomas Sopwith 1934
Elizabeth Meyer 1984
L. Dennis Kozlowski 2000
Cassio Antunes 2006
Racing career
America's Cup 1934
Length 129 ft 6 in (39.47 m) (LOA)
88 ft 2 in (26.87 m) (LWL)
Beam 22 ft (6.71 m)
Draft 14 ft 9 in (4.50 m)
Displacement 143 tons
Sail area 7,651 sq ft (710.8 m2)

Endeavour is a 130-foot (40 m) J-class yacht built for the 1934 America's Cup by Camper and Nicholson in Gosport, Portsmouth Harbour, England. She was built for Thomas Sopwith who used his aviation design expertise to ensure the yacht was the most advanced of its day with a steel hull and mast. She was launched in 1934 and won many races in her first season including against the J's Velsheda and Shamrock V. She failed in her America's Cup challenge against the American defender Rainbow but came closer to lifting the cup than any other until Australia II succeeded in 1983.

Endeavour at Long Beach, CA 1996


Endeavour was designed by Charles Ernest Nicholson. Endeavour pioneered the Quadrilateral genoa, a twin clewed headsail offering great sail area and consequent power. This design is still in use in the J's today. The boat also featured a larger and improved spinnaker


America's Cup[edit]

Endeavour‍ '​s deck 1996

Endeavour challenged for the 1934 America's Cup and raced New York Yacht Club defender Rainbow. However, the campaign was blighted by a strike of Sopwith's professional crew prior to departing for America. Forced to rely mainly on keen amateurs, who lacked the necessary experience, the campaign failed. Rainbow won with 4–2. This was one of the most contentious of the America's Cup battles and prompted the headline: "Britannia rules the waves and America waives the rules."

Endeavour helm & wheelstation

After America's Cup[edit]

Following the America's Cup she dominated the British sailing scene until, whilst being towed across the Atlantic to Britain in September 1937, she broke loose from her tow and was feared lost.[1] She was eventually found and returned to England where she was laid up. For 46 years Endeavour languished through a variety of owners. In 1947, she was sold for scrap, saved only a few hours before her demolition was due. In the 1970s she sank in the River Medina, Isle of Wight. She was purchased for ten pounds and patched up enough to refloat. Until the mid-1980s she was on shore at Calshot Spit, an ex-seaplane base on the edge of the New Forest, Southern England. By this time she was in a desperate state, with only the hull remaining, lacking rudder, mast and keel.


Interior of Endeavour after the restoration

In 1984 Endeavour was bought by Elizabeth Meyer, who undertook a five-year project to rebuild her. The initial work was undertaken where she lay to ensure that the hull was sufficiently seaworthy to be towed to the shipyard of Royal Huisman, in Holland, who designed and installed a new rig, engine, generator and mechanical systems and fitted the interior to a very high standard. Endeavour sailed again, on 22 June 1989, for the first time in 52 years.[2]

Elizabeth Meyer sold Endeavour to Dennis Kozlowski for US$15M in 2000.[3] She was again sold in 2006 for a reputed $13M to Hawaii resident Cassio Antunes.[4]


After her rebuild she cruised extensively and in 1999 joined the rebuilt Velsheda and Shamrock V to compete in the Antigua Classics Regatta.


  1. ^ "Endeavour I Adrift in Atlantic". Sydney Morning Herald. 17 September 1937. Retrieved 16 January 2009. 
  2. ^ Lloyd, Barbara (21 June 1989). "Re-launching a grand era". New York Times. Retrieved 22 April 2012. 
  3. ^ "Story of the J-Class Yachts". Retrieved 10 May 2011. 
  4. ^ Freifeld, Karen; Silver, Jim. "Kozlowski's 'Endeavour' Yacht Was Bought by Antunes". blommberg.com. Retrieved 16 January 2009. 

External links[edit]