Since designing his first keelboat, Titus Canby, three decades ago, Farr (b. 1949) has been the most accomplished and sought-after yacht designer in the world based on the 37 world championships won in his designs and a multitude of grand-prix boats, cruisers, and one-designs winning races all over the globe.
Along with his partner, Russell Bowler, he’s been the dominant designer in the Whitbread and Volvo races since the early 90s, and he’s prolific in both the production boat building industry with six designs winning Sailing World Boat of the Year Awards and in custom one-offs such as the current IMS 50-foot world champion Brava Q8. Some of Farr’s big hits include the Farr 40, Sayonara, Steinlager 2, Beneteau First 40.7, Mumm 36, and Mumm 30. Farr’s design firm, Farr Yacht Design, located in Annapolis, Md., has drawn America’s Cup challengers since 1987, but has yet to win that prize. For 2003, he was chosen to design Oracle Racing’s IACC challenger, runner-up to the America’s Cup winning Alinghi.