Cheers, a proa designed by Richard Newick of St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, took third place when sailed by Tom Follett in the 1968 single handed transatlantic race.
At first the Race committee of the Royal Western Yacht club of England did not accept the application for 'Cheers' and returned the entrance fee. However when Tom Follett sailed her single handed from the West Indies to England they reconsidered their decision and the result justified their change of heart.
The team, Morris, Newick and Follet are an excellent example of co-operation of leader/financier, designer and sailor. 'Cheers' is of particular interest to the charity because her designer drew his inspiration from the Pacific Island proas, an example of which, from Fiji, is part of our collection.
'Cheers' is built using a wooden frame with a fibreglass covering and is propelled by two sails.
'Cheers' has been lent to the charity by the St. Croix Landmarks Society through the good offices of her owner, James R. Morris of Denver, Colorado, whose most recent boat 'Three Cheers' continues to excel in races against craft many times her size.
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