Pen Duick is best known for a series of ocean racing ships sailed by French yachtsman Eric Tabarly. Tabarly’s father gave the 1898 Fife gaff cutter he purchased, and on which his son learnt to sail, the moniker “coal tit” in Breton.
He then utilized the moniker for a string of successful racing yachts in the 1960s and 1970s.
The YRA 36 ft linear rater Pen Duick (formerly Yum) was designed by William Fife III and built in 1898 by Gridiron & Marine Motor Works at Carrigaloe in Cork Harbour, Ireland, for Cork yachtsman W. J. C. Cummins.
The gaff-rigged cutter quickly gained popularity in the Irish, British, and French seas. When Éric was seven years old, Tabarly’s father bought her and taught him how to sail on her.
After WWII, she was put up for sale, but with no takers, Éric persuaded his father to give her to him.
The wooden ketch Pen Duick II and Éric Tabarly won the 1964 Singlehanded Transatlantic Race.
Tabarly designed and built the 17.45-meter-long schooner Pen Duick III, which features a distinctive clipper bow. The yacht won the Sydney-Hobart Yacht Race in 1967.
The Pen Duick IV was a 20.50-meter-long aluminum trimaran with a ketch rig and spinning masts. André Allègre created her look. Pen Duick IV clashed with a ship during the 1968 Singlehanded Transatlantic Race, forcing Tabarly to retire from the race. Pen Duick IV was later sold to French yachtsman Alain Colas, who renamed her Manureva and used her to win the 1972 Singlehanded Transatlantic Race. Manureva and her owner perished at sea in 1978.