History

The International Six Metre Class dates back to 1907 and the introduction of the International Rule, also known as the Metre Rule. Throughout the class’s history it has been a hotbed for technical innovation with the world’s leading yacht designers and sailors bringing often radical concepts and technical excellence to the fleet. An Olympic Class from 1908 to 1952, the Sixes were also frequently used as a development testbed for the America’s Cup 12 Metres. The rule was periodically updated to keep the class at the forefront of technical development, whilst at the same time honouring its extraordinary heritage.

The class has inevitably seen peaks and troughs of activity. The 1920s and 30s saw a frenzy of new boat construction, but the advent of the second world war brought a downturn which continued through the post-war austerity years. In 1975 the first of the “modern” Sixes appeared and so began the resurgence of this extraordinary class. Over 1200 6 Metre boats were built in total, of which some 450 are still in existence today.

Clever management of both the rule and the international class association by its dedicated officers and members has seen the International Six Metre return to its rightful place as one of the most exciting and important racing fleets on the planet. It brings together the elegance of the Classic Division with the cutting-edge development of the modern boats in the Open Division, in a regatta circuit that takes competitors to some of the most spectacular yachting venues around the globe. The camaraderie amongst the fleet is exceptional and the après-sailing lifestyle is as elegant as the yachts themselves.

Whilst the Sixes have raced globally since their inception, the introduction of a formal World Championship only came in 1973, when the first Worlds was raced off Seattle, USA.

International Six Metre World Championships Hall of Fame

YearOpenClassicVenue
2022Momo (SUI)Dix Aout (FRA)Sanxenxo, Spain
2019Junior (SUI)Bribon 500 (ESP)Hanko, Finland
2017Junior (SUI)Bribon (ESP)Vancouver, Canada
2015Junior No Limit Yacht (SUI)Llanoria (CAN)La Trinité-sur-Mer, France
2013St Francis IX (CAN)Fridolin (FIN)Flensburg, Germany
2011Junior (FRA)Sara af Hango (FIN)Helsinki, Finland
2009Sophie II (SWE)Gallant (CAN)Newport, USA
2007Fleau (SUI)Fagel Bla (SWE)Cowes, UK
2005Courage IX (GER)Toy (FIN)Sandhamn, Sweden
2003Notorious (SWE)Toy (FIN)St. Tropez, France
1999Fleau (SUI)Alibaba II (FIN)Hanko, Finland
1997Scoundrel (GBR)Cannes, France
1995Notorious (SWE)Sandhamn, Sweden
1993Nivola (ITA)Cannes, France
1991Woodoo (SWE)Torquay, UK
1989St. Francis IX (USA)Marstrand, Sweden
1987Scoundrel (GBR)Oyster Bay, USA
1985Junior (SUI)Cannes, France
1983Irene/California I (USA)Newport, USA
1981Not completed – lack of windSeattle, USA
1979Irene (USA)Marstrand, Sweden
1977Irene (USA)Alassio (ITA)
1975Maybe X (SWE)Sandhamn, Sweden
1973St. Francis V (USA)Seattle, USA