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Class:International 6 Metre Rule: Third metre rule
Sail no:GBR48Home port:Granströms Båtvarv Kb, Hangö
Year designed:1946Country:Finland
Year built:1946Current Status: 
Designed by:James McGruer
Built by:McGruer & Son, Clynder, United Kingdom

Rig: d/k
Construction: d/k


Specify units
LWL:d/kTrim tab:d/k
Beam:d/kWings on keel:d/k
Draft:d/kL (Measured):d/k
Luff (A) IRC (P):d/kDate of last measurement certificate:d/k
Fore triangle (J):d/kMeasurer:d/k
Foot (B) IRC (E):d/kIRC Rating:d/k
Sail area:d/kn year:d/k


This section records what is known about the past history of the boat.
Complete one row for each change of name, sail number, location and/or owner and the year in which the change(s) occurred. The current owner is not displayed unless permission has been given.

Year acquired: 2009; Current owner: Not displayed

Year: 2006; Previous owner: Mr Paul Smith ;Previous location: Hamble
Year: 1946; Previous owner: Sir Frank Spriggs K.B.E., Hon. F.R.Ae.S ;Previous location: Royal Corinthian Yacht Club

Restorations & Modifications:

YearName, Address of restorerDetails
1996-98Tino Rawnsley Full restoration


Use this section to note any anecdotes, successes, etc. or add any notes

Built for Sir Frank Spriggs in 1946 by James McGruer. Caprice was found desolate in a barn in 1995 by Tim Street at the request of Richard Bond. Richard said that he wanted the most beautiful six, and Tim, with his encyclopedic knowledge of these most beautiful boats, duly located Caprice and alerted Richard to her existence. When Richard went to visit her, her owner wanted to burn her for the lead. Richard had other ideas and ended up buying "a box of matches"! She was in complete disrepair and needing a total restoration. She was taken to another barn on the Somerset Levels. I actually witnessed her being lifted from the lorry on to her cradle. The planking was literally falling off her! She was restored over 18 months to impeccable condition by Tino Rawnsley. She was rebuilt using most of the original mahogony planking, coated with a khaya mahogany laminate. She was fastened with brass rivets and roves and hence she is still in perfect order. She was fitted with modern rigging and returned to the racing circuit in 1998. In the World Championships in St Tropez sailed by Tim Street, Caprice came second and has been British champion under Brian Pope, her second owner. She has also seen countless successes under Paul Smith her last owner. She is widely regarded as the most beautiful Six Metre on the water and probably ever! I have a great affection for this stunning vessel, she holds a special place in my heart having sailed on her many times, including her maiden voyage (since restoration) from Charlestown to Fowey (Cornwall). She is beautifully balanced and has the best sheer of any metre boat! I am somewhat biased, however if you ever witness her beauty you will understand my sentiments. I dream of one day owning and campaigning her just as my father did. Anon
Caprice when owned by Paul Smith recently won the 2008 European Championships , the largest ever staged for the Classics and confirms her postion as possibly the fastest as well as the most beautiful classic. She has now been bought by Nick Brocklehurst based in Finland who intends to race her internationally.

Caprice was built for Sir Frank Spriggs, an aviation hero, whom at both Sopwith and Hawker Siddeley played a major role in the creation of monumentally important World War I & II aircraft such as the Sopwith Camel, Sopwith Pup and Hawker Hurricane to name but a few. He also followed Sir Tom Sopwith into yachting and together with Frank Murdock, designed the revolutionary rig for Sir Tom Sopwiths, nearly victorious, 1934 Americas Cup J-Class boat Endeavour. However, whilst Sir Tom Sopwith concentrated his efforts on J-Class boats, Sir Fank Spriggs focussed on six metres.

Caprice was Sir Frank Spriggs’ second six metre designed and built by James Mcgruer and in fact James McGruers penultimate six metre. Caprice is very long and one of the most beautiful sixes ever built. She was constructed using carvel mahogany planking on oak framing, fastened originally with brass screws but was subsequently refastened a few years later using more conventional copper rivets & roves. Sir Frank Spriggs especially requested the sail number K48/GBR48 and in 1948 Caprice attended the trials for the British Americas Cup and Olympics, but lost out to her sister K65 Johan of Rhu, according to Michael Crean (Royal Thames Yacht Club) due to poor helsmanship.


Caprice was discovered in 1996 in Northern Ireland being used as a garden shed and a hen house. Subsequently, she was bought by Richard Bond, restored by Tino Rawnsley and relaunched in May 1998. The restoration of Caprices hull, was a matter of considerable debate. Richard Bond wanting to keep her: "as original as possible". Ian Howlett was consulted and it was eventually decided to apply a 3mm cold-moulded Khaya mahogany laminate veneer at 45 degrees to the planking and was fastened with epoxy. In this way, according to Tino Rawnsley, it was possible to preserve approximately 80% of her original planking and 30% of her original oak frames. The frames & knees were replaced as required. She was totally refastened using copper rivets and roves (larger diameter than previously), received a new deck (teak & mahogany), beams and a considerable amount new beam shelf. Her keel bolts were replaced, she had a full complement of new stainless steel floors fitted. Finally, she received a Howlett mast, Fredriksen deck hardware & Andersen winches. In 2004 she received a new All-Spars mast, boom & rig. In 2009 her mast will once again be refitted.

Planned Rennovations

This year she will have a minor refit. During the next few seasons Caprice will receive a new rudder, rudder shaft, bearing housing & bearings. She will have some timber let in to her stern post. She will receive a few new steamed oak frames, winches as required, her bilge will be stripped, dried & re-epoxied. Her timber keel will be stripped, refaired and antifouled. At the end of next year she will get a new suit of sails in preparation for the 2011 World Championships.


Vesa Härkönen
Nicholas Brocklehurst
Panu Lehti
Mikko Jalas
Paavo Pietola
Kirsti Lehtimäki

Partial Race History (since 1998 rebuild)

World Championships
2003 Bronze Medal (St. Tropez, France)
2007 Bronze Medal (Cowes, England)

2000 Seventh (St. Tropez, France)
2008 First (La Trinité sur Mer, France)

Coupe de l’Entente Cordiale
2002 Third
2004 Second
2005 First

RSnYC International Classes Regatta
2001 Winner (5/5 race wins)

Coupe de la Méditerranée
2002 Third (St.Tropez, France: Classic + Modern handicap)
2003 Second (St.Tropez, France)

Uploaded Pictures & Documents

Sources & References

Use this section to note any web resources or published references to this boat

Registers/Yard Lists:
  • McGruer Register : 514

Contributors to this page: admin .
Page last modified on Wednesday 15 of September, 2010 14:52:17 UTC by admin.