HIR 3

Our boat was a 40 years old sailing legend of the Adriatic with great sailing history, several Atlantic crossings and a circumnavigation in her wake. Neglected for over 10 years it was doomed to decay, but we have restored her and decided to take her for another spin around the Globe.  
Our ‘home away from home’ proved seaworthy again, completing her 2nd circumnavigation and bringing us safely home.

Past (1979- 2014)

Famous  Croatian skipper, Mladen Šutej bought the boat in 1979 from an Italian shipyard with intention to get a seaworthy vessel for his first ocean expedition.
Based on his experience, he wanted to buy a 10-meter sailing yacht to cross the Atlantic, so she had to be quality build, have a full skeg, wide hull, lead keel and solid mast and rigging. Šutej bought a CAT 34 from a small Italian shipyard named after the owners (Carlo Alberto Tibreio) as a bare hull with mast and deck equipment. The boat was finished and lunched in Marina Punat in 1980 after spent 2000 working hours. One interesting fact: boats interior is made of expensive teak, but the wood came from an old stand on which one boat from Italy was delivered to the port of Rijeka.
The boat was named ‘HIR 3′ (Caprice). The history of the name dates back to his uncle who started to build his first boat at the age of 65 and when people asked him why, he simply replied… it is my caprice. The first Mladen’s boat was ‘Hir 2′, and logically, this one was named ‘HIR 3′.
On her first big voyage in 1982, HIR 3 went across the Atlantic to the Caribbean, then to Florida and back across the Atlantic to Croatia. The 5.000 miles from Miami to Rijeka were sailed non-stop, for which HIR 3 and Mladen Šutej were awarded. The brass plaquette is still on the wall of HIR 3 salon.
Next voyage of HIR 3 was around the World via Cape Horn, Torres Strait and through Red Sea, in 1987-1989.  In her 1st circumnavigation she covered remarkable 34.000+ miles over 2 years, during which Mario Saletto, a renown director, filmed 35 episodes of a documentary ‘Sails around the World’ which was aired on Croatian national television. Not the captain nor the crew, but the boat was the star of the series and that’s how HIR 3 became a celebrity.
Mladen Šutej published two books about ocean sailing on board ‘HIR 3′ – ‘Atlantic Challenge’ and ‘Sailing around Cape Horn’ which further established her as the legend among the contemporary sailboats.
HIR 3 was badly damaged  in 1991, during occupation of marina Dubrovnik, with 286 bombshell marks on the hull, near the waterline and all over the boat, but Mladen Šutej managed to save and restore her.
For years HIR 3 was the training boat for his sailing school and some 1600 people learned to sail aboard her. Saša Fegić was one of them, attending a summer sailing course in 1992. at age of 14. That was love at first sight.
In the new millenium, the boat was sold and moved to Vrsar in Istria, but somehow she got neglected
and forgotten…

Present (2014-2020)

Our story with HIR 3 starts again in 2014 when, walking around marina in Vrsar, Saša Fegić noticed a familiar red boat. It was hardly recognizable – neglected for over 10 years, the boat was in miserable condition, still floating, but barely. He felt sorry for the legendary sailboat, so he searched for the owner and convinced him to sell the abandoned craft at reasonable price, yet inside he dwelled whether it was worth it or the boat was beyond repair.
It was an act of utter optimism, according to everyone who has seen the boat, but Saša decided to give it his very best shot, determined to repair her and take her around the world once again.
HIR 3 was berthed in Poreč and a crowdfunding campaign was launched to help with initial cost of repairs. Some 5.000 € were raised, a drop in overall cost of repair, but more valuable than money, crowdfunding campaign brought attention to HIR 3 and numerous unknown people offered their support and assistance.
It took two long years of hard and rather dirty work to make HIR 3 sail again, but in late June 2016 we finally hoisted her sails and HIR 3 sailed again!
During 2016 we sailed across the Adriatic, from North to South, from Dubrovnik back to Trieste, to participate in Barcolana, the biggest regatta in the world. HIR 3 was alive again and we wanted to show her to the world. Many have recognized the legendary red boat.
2017 was the year for fine tuning and crew recruitment – we attended 10 regattas and some 100 people sailed more than 4000 miles up and down the Adriatic. We were gaining experience sailing her, as HIR 3 was officially to attempt to sail around the world again.
In 2018 final offshore preparations were done in the boatyard of Mali Lošinj – safety gear was installed, new set of sails was ordered, boat was thoroughly sealed, cleaned and painted, restored to her full beauty. She never looked prettier and one could not tell her age, as fully crewed she sailed out of harbour and into her new adventure.
In October 2020, 28 months later, after completing her 2nd circumnavigation and covering +38.000 nautical miles, HIR 3 is returning to Mali Lošinj, her new home port where she will remain.

Future (2021 -->)

There’s still a lot of life in this vintage lady and despite her mileage we are sure HIR 3 can still sail strong for a while longer. However, after 2 years of circumnavigation, she is somewhat beaten and in need of a thorough refit and repair.
We aim to restore her to make her fit to sail the Adriatic and for that we are starting a campaign “SailSTRONG!” to fund the refit. Stay tuned for more details! 
Our plan is to sail HIR 3 again throughout the year, hopefully already in 2021, attending regattas all across the Adriatic with our friends at Sailing Tribe.
If you would like to sail with us aboard HIR 3, join our Sailing Tribe on Patreon and get early notice of our plans and whereabouts.

He gives twice, who gives fast.

Greek proverb

Sponsors of HIR 3 revival

 Restoration of HIR 3 was an endeavour in which many have pitched in, either by lending their hands, free work, or by donations and support. Without their help it would be impossible for us to get her to sail again in such a short time. 

Sailing Club HORIZONT from Poreč was our home base when we started repairing the boat. For two years members have participated in HIR 3 restoration by offering help or advice, or just by offering support and encouragement.

Grad Poreč logo

For three years Poreč was the home for HIR 3, at the very beginning of refit and once she started sailing. We are grateful for the support and hospitality.

The family shop supported our refit with custom made upholstery which made HIR 3 livable and feel more like home. 

Blue World Institute for Marine Research supported our Crowdfunding campaign helping us raise the money for repairs.