One of the world’s most iconic racing superyachts has returned to Southampton waters after a historic restoration.

The 1930 America’s Cup challenger Shamrock V, known as ‘The Queen of the J Class’, was relaunched on Monday at Saxon Wharf in Southampton.

This comes after the ship had the most comprehensive restoration and rebuild of her storied 94-year history.

Originally, Shamrock V was built in 1930 for Sir Thomas Lipton as his fifth and final challenge for the America's Cup.

Racing at the America’s Cup J Class regatta in Bermuda in 2017, Shamrock V sustained significant structural damage and was laid up ashore.

Seven years later, following a change of owner and a complete strip down to the last bolt, the work of some of the industry’s best shipwrights, engineers and project teams has restored Shamrock V to her former glory.

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Paul Spooner, who led the project team alongside Feargus Bryan, said: “It has been a massive undertaking and a huge privilege to unite extraordinary talents across the Classic and Superyacht communities.

“We were very fortunate to have a committed and knowledgeable owner who enabled us to fully and correctly restore this vital part of yachting history and prepare her for her next 100 years.

The launch will be followed by re-masting, sea trials, commissioning, sail testing and race training, seeing Shamrock V grace Solent waters until July.

She will then move to the Mediterranean to take part in some informal J Class events in preparation for October’s J Class America’s Cup regatta in Barcelona. 

Chief Shipwright, Giles Brotherton, a veteran of some of the world’s most storied classic restorations, added: “It is very rare to be able to work on a revival of this scale and ambition. 

“Some of our artisans were using hand tools that were used on Shamrock’s original build.  It is without doubt the biggest and arguably the most important yacht restoration in the world today.”