Grayling, Contessa 26
Living onboard Contessa 26
Jeremy Rogers onboard Grayling Contessa 26
Contessa 26 regatta

Contessa 26

Based on the Folkboat, the Contessa 26 made her first appearance on the water at the end of April 1966, and within two years the demand for this pretty little GRP cruiser-racer was such that the boatshed had to expand to double its original size.

Over the next 10 years The Jeremy Rogers yard built approximately 350 Contessa 26s with another set of moulds shipped to Canada, where around 400 Canadian Contessa 26s were built under licence by JJ Taylors Ltd. of Toronto. These boats had a slightly modified deck moulding and interior layout, although the hull always remained the same. Production of these finally ended in 1990.

The Contessa 26 has a passionate following around the world and an excellent and active Class Association.

A Contessa 26 has been winner of the coveted Round the Island Gold Roman Bowl an impressive five times, ‘Rosina’  of Beaulieu three times, with ‘High Potential’  and ‘Sundowner’  both also bringing home the trophy.

Although the moulds are no longer in existence there are plenty of vintage hulls in need of a refit, a worthwhile project for anyone looking for a truly classic and manageable small boat that can take you literally anywhere.

Famous Names

Many epic voyages have been undertaken in this iconic, small yacht, here are just a few of the famous Contessa 26 names:

Tania Abei was just 18 when she sailed around the world alone in her Contessa 26.

Nick Jaffe was a relatively novice sailor when he sailed from Europe back to his native Australia,

Sebastien and Adele Smith lived aboard with their young family.

Peter Hancock wrote about his travels in his book Sailing out of Silence.

Nina Kristin Nilsen & Henrik Nor-Hansen sailed extensively in Bika II.

High Mountain Guide Vincente Castro used his Contessa 26 as a base to seek out new and exciting climbing challenges.

Historic CO26 Brochure

Contessa 26