St. Barths Bucket Regatta (Photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

St. Barths Bucket Regatta (Photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

by  Barby MacGowan

The second day of the Bucket Regatta saw six new winners in six classes after the 38-strong fleet sailed a long “Not So Wiggly” course around and through the smaller islands and prominent rock formations lying to the north and west of St. Barths. Performances turned in by the victors (Unfurled, SPIIP, Axia, Rosehearty, Koo and Hanuman) also translated into new teams atop the leaderboard in four of the five pursuit classes as well as the J Class when cumulative scores were tallied.  
After yesterday’s race around the island, Rosehearty sat in third in Grandes Dames as did Unfurled in Gazelles. Both are defending champions and made a point of saying they were far from being counted out. Unfurled’s victory today put her in second overall, only one point behind yesterday’s leader WinWin, while Rosehearty’s gave her a tied point score with Meteor for first (tie-breaker rules give the nod to Rosehearty) and dropped yesterday’s leader Perseus^3 to third.

 Even with all the “ins and outs” of the course, Rosehearty never put her spinnaker up. “It was pretty windy (18-20 knots), and we had broken our spinnaker earlier in the week, so it was a risk vs. reward thing,” said Rosehearty’s tactician Paul Cayard. “We had good tactics and lay lines, sailed in all the right places and were able to hold everybody off without it.” Cayard saw Perseus^3 deploy its kite and have some problems, which may have contributed to the team’s fourth-place finish. “The angles just weren’t right for us to put it up; it was a little painful to go slow but the right thing to do when racing these boats.”

 Near the end of the race, two boats from another class were ahead of Rosehearty, slowing it down, while Meteor was advancing quickly from behind. “We focused on staying in front of Meteor; otherwise, they were going to pass us and they’d be winning the regatta.” 

St. Barths Bucket Regatta (Photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

St. Barths Bucket Regatta (Photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

 In Les Voiles Blanche class, Koo also stakes her first-place position on a tied overall point score with yesterday’s leader Q,  while in the Elegantes, P2 trails leader SPIPP by only four points for second, tied on point score with Sojana.

 P2’s tactician Tony Rey said his team spent last night repairing a spinnaker that blew out yesterday, causing the team to start their three-race series with a fifth-place finish. “The pressure is higher when you are dealing with your own adversity,” he said with a chuckle this morning before racing, “but today will be windy and not so wiggly. This is a course that separates the men from the boys. It sounds innocuous and benign, but it’s plenty wiggly for these boats.”

 In Mademoiselles, today’s winner Axia, also a defending champion, is now in third overall, tied in scoring with two others behind her, while Adela stands between her and overall leader Wisp from yesterday. According to Axia’s tactician Robbie Doyle, his team’s seventh yesterday hurt them, but mathematically, it’s still possible for them to win. “Wisp has to make a mistake, but mistakes are made, as we’ve proven,” he said.

St. Barths Bucket Regatta (Photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

St. Barths Bucket Regatta (Photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

 The J Class had a glorious day of sailing, starting off with a thrilling 2.5 nm downwind leg. Yesterday’s leader Velsheda suffered a penalty after the start, clearing the way for Hanuman to lead the entire way around the 26-mile course.

 All to say, there are no runaway winners going into tomorrow’s final day of racing when a race around the island, this time clockwise, will conclude the on-water competition.

St. Barths Bucket Regatta (Photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

St. Barths Bucket Regatta (Photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

The Bucket Stewards collaborated in 2016 to establish a new criteria for the coveted Bucket Trophy.  With the racing format having changed in recent years, the emphasis is now directed to class racing. This has provided an opportunity to reestablish a quantitative criteria for the overall winner of the Bucket Trophy.

The ‘Bucket Trophy’ will be presented to the overall winner of the 2017 St Barths Bucket. Yachts eligible for the prestigious award will be the class winners with five or more yachts in class.The class winner who prevails in the ‘most competitive, closely contested class’ will be the overall winner.

 The class with smallest series point differential between first and fourth place finishers will receive 1 point with each class in succession receiving 2, 3, 4 or 5 points. Additionally, the class with the least overall time differential (total time/total distance for all races) between the first and fourth place finishers will receive one point, with each class in succession receiving one additional point as above.

St. Barths Bucket Regatta (Photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

St. Barths Bucket Regatta (Photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

 The above mentioned points will be added together for the overall competitive class score.  The class with the lowest number of points will be considered the ‘most competitive, closely contested class’.

 The winner of this class will be the overall winner of the 2017 edition of the St Barths Bucket.

 Should there be a tie, the class winner with the most yachts in class wins. In the event the tie remains unbroken, starting prowess will determine the overall winner (total time for all starts, from scheduled start to crossing the line – with the smallest total time prevailing).

Special Needs Children Project

St Barth schools have 40 special needs students with various motor and cognitive challenges. Outside the school system there are other island children with even more severe disabilities. The existing program facilities and services are not adequate to help these children and their families thrive.

This project supports the island’s first dedicated, handicap-accessible space suitable for assessment, treatment and coordinated support services, and provides the additional special educator and psychological services these children need to achieve greater autonomy, better school integration and a better quality of life.

The 2015 St Barth Bucket was proud to contribute to this initiative of the local St Barth Lions and Rotary Clubs.

Watch replay of all St. Barths Bucket Regatta races on TracTrac

St. Barths Bucket Regatta (Photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

St. Barths Bucket Regatta (Photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Studio Borlenghi )

 

Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup (Photo by Carlo Borlenghi)

A record-sized fleet of the world’s largest performance yachts is readying itself in Porto Cervo, Sardinia for next week’s Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup. Organised by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda and the International Maxi Association (IMA) with Rolex as title sponsor, this year’s event takes place over 4th-10th September and has 52 entries. Of these, 25 belong to members of the IMA, the body which since 1979 has been guiding and structuring maxi yacht racing globally, in collaboration with the world’s leading yacht clubs.

In terms of length, the fleet spans the giant 49.7m Ohana to entries at the shorter end of the IMA’s permitted size range – 60 footers such as Gérard Logel’s Swan 601 @robas and the Wally 60 Wallyño.

The biggest class at the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup will once again be the Wallys (an associated class within the IMA), which features 13 examples of the modernist high performance luxury yachts. Leading the charge off the Costa Smeralda will be the two Wallycentos, Sir Lindsay Owen Jones’ Magic Carpet Cubed and the latest example launched last October, David Leuschen’s Galateia, plus the elongated version, (now 32.7m) Open Season of International Maxi Association President, Thomas Bscher.


Photo: ROLEX / Carlo Borlenghi

The Supermaxi class has a formidable line-up including Irvine Laidlaw’s new Swan 115 Highland Fling 15, plus two Baltic Yachts-built high performance carbon fibre one-offs: the Nauta 115 Nikata and the Javier Jaudenes-designed Win Win – both making their Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup debuts. This year sees the return of Sir Peter Harrison’s Farr 115 ketch, Sojana, following a lengthy refit.

The Js are back this year. Lionheart and Velsheda will match race their way around the race track.

The Maxi class (79-100ft) will see two high profile yachts making their Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup debuts. Best known for her offshore program, Mike Slade’s Farr 100 Leopard 3 has travelled to the four corners of the earth to compete in races such as the Rolex Sydney Hobart, the RORC Caribbean 600 and the Fastnet Race, in which she has twice scored line honours victories.

Despite only being two years old, George David’s Juan Kouyoumdjian-designed Rambler 88, also has notched up thousands of sea miles. This year alone she has won the IMA’s annual Volcano Race (from Gaeta, Italy, south around the volcanic Aeolian Islands off northeast Sicily) and last week claimed line honours in the Palermo-Montecarlo race, the fourth and final event of the IMA’s inaugural Mediterranean Maxi Offshore Challenge.

The Maxi class also includes four entries from Southern Wind Shipyard, including the Farr-designed 100ft Blues and Michael Cotter’s Windfall. There are two SWS 82s: Massimilano Florio’s Grande Orazio was winner of the IMA’s Volcano Race in 2015, while Ammonite is brand new, campaigned by leading Australian skipper Marcus Blackmore.

Rolex Maxi 72 World Championship

As ever a major feature of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup is the Rolex Maxi 72 World Championship. This year six examples of the ultra competitive, owner-driven, grand prix racers will be lining up, their challenge being to dislodge Hap Fauth’s dominant Judel Vrolijk design, Bella Mente. The reigning Rolex Maxi 72 World Champion  goes into this year’s Worlds straight from victories at Copa del Rey MAPFRE and the inaugural Maxi 72 North American Championship held in Newport, RI in June.

“This is our favourite regatta,” commented Fauth, who is President of the Maxi 72 Class, which is affiliated to the IMA. “There will be six 72 footers and competition will be fierce. It is always challenging conditions both for the around the buoys and the coastal race. It is normally all you want.”

As to Bella Mente being favourite for a third World title, Fauth added: “We have the oldest boat and I am the oldest helmsman, but we have got a very good team. Our execution over the course of a regatta has been good and if there is one reason why we might have a small advantage it is because of that. But it is a very small advantage: The margin of victory in this fleet is two or three seconds – the boats are very close.”


Photo: ROLEX / Carlo Borlenghi

 

The Mini Maxi class (60-79ft) also has a strong line-up. Roberto Lacorte’s Mark Mills 68 Supernikka returns to defend her title, while she will be up against another Mills 68, the more thoroughbred racer, Prospector, which as Alegre and then Caol Ila R was one of the most competitive boats in what is now the Maxi 72 class. Also to be watched will be American Bryon Ehrhart’s Reichel Pugh 63, Lucky. Winner of last year’s Transatlantic Race, Lucky in her previous life was Loki, winner of the 2011 Rolex Sydney Hobart.

In 2015 the Mini Maxi Racer-Cruiser class had one of the tightest finishes and the top four boats return this year, including winner, Riccardo de Michele’s Vallicelli 80 H2O, which finished on equal points with Giuseppe Puttini’s Swan 65 Shirlaf (which this year will face stiff competition from new IMA member Marietta Strasoldo’s Swan 651 Lunz Am Meer.)

Andrew McIrvine, Secretary General of the IMA commented: “It will be an exciting year with a number of new boats competing, especially in the SuperMaxi division where a new generation of more race-oriented boats are appearing. The challenge of manoeuvring these huge craft around the tight courses around the islands of the Maddalena makes for a great spectacle and keeps so many sailors coming back year after year.”

Racing will take place over a mixture of windward-leeward and coastal courses. As usual there will be a magnificent social programme including the annual International Maxi Association Dinner and parties sponsored by Rolex and Audi.

Entry List

Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup 2016 Tracking

 

#sail #race #racing

 

gc32 rt malcesine day 01 ph max ranchi (2)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

 

After two very successful opening days of competition on Lake Garda, no racing was held on the final day of the GC32 Malcesine Cup. Following the collision of Malizia – Yacht Club de Monaco and a press RIB on Friday, the Fraglia Vela Malcesine and the GC32 International Class Association did not reach an agreement over the liability for the final day of racing.

In the four years that the GC32 Racing Tour has existed, safety has always been of paramount importance. Steps the GC32 Racing Tour has taken this year include employing its own Safety Officer in Henrik Norberg – a former America’s Cup and multihull sailor, whose regular job for the last 25 years has also as a fireman and paramedic in his native Sweden. At the GC32 Malcesine Cup additional steps have been taken to increase the exclusion zone around the race area.

 

Christian Scherrer, GC32 Racing Tour Manager, said: “Fortunately there was no injury during Friday’s incident. We are continually taking steps to improve safety and have made considerable progress and will continue to do so this season.”

A safety group within the GC32 Class Association has been set up to improve safety procedures for future GC32 regattas. This group will include Norberg and some of the GC32’s most experienced and prominent sailors.

President of the Fraglia Vela Malcesine, Gianni Testa, commented:  “As event organiser, the FVM fully shares and agrees in the decision of the class: Safety First! Foiling is a new game and it requires new safety procedures to guarantee the safety on the race course for everyone involved.”

 

Team Tilt Winner (Photo by Max Ranchi)

Team Tilt Winner (Photo by Max Ranchi)

Team Tilt gets the ceremonial dowsing. Photo ©: Max Ranchi / www.maxranchi.com

Team Tilt victorious

The GC32 Malcesine Cup had a close conclusion with Switzerland’s Team Tilt finishing just one point ahead of the Franck Cammas-steered NORAUTO. These results are the opposite of those scored at May’s GC32 Riva Cup. With the two teams now tied on points at the top of the overall leaderboard, Team Tilt is nominally overall leader of the 2016 GC32 Racing Tour due to her winning the latest regatta.

Helmsman Arnaud Psarofaghis said: “It is a great to win here in Malcesine and it is a good end for the boys at the end of the week we have done. We improved every race so it is good to have won here. It was pretty sad we didn’t complete any scoring races over the last two days. We wanted to fight more on the water so that is a shame, but it is life and we did the work at the right time.”

Jason Carroll’s Argo won the owner-driver trophy at the GC32 Malcesine Cup to consolidate her position at the top of 2016 owner-driver results table.

The GC32 Racing Tour now moves on to the 35th Copa del Rey MAPFRE, to be held over 3-6 August in Palma de Mallorca.

Looking ahead Psarofaghis said: “I think everyone will improve. I think will have some more people in the fight for the podium and we will have to push harder and harder and not rest on our laurels. Take the win now but work harder for the next race.”

Get the very latest news from the GC32 Racing Tour’s new social media pages:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gc32racingtour/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/GC32RacingTour

Overall results (subject to jury hearings tomorrow)

Pos Team R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 R9 Tot
1 Team Tilt 1 3 5 1 2 1 1 2 2 18
2 NORAUTO 3 1 1 3 1 2 2 5 1 19
3 Gunvor Sailing 2 2 4 5 7** 3 4 1 4 32
4 Argo 6 4 2 2 4 5 7 4 6 40
5 Malizia – Yacht Club de Monaco 4 5 7 4 3 9 6 3 5 46
6 ARMIN STROM Sailing Team 5 7 6 10 10* 8 3 8 3 60
7 Mamma Aiuto! 10 8 3 7 7 7 8 6 8 64
8 Team ENGIE 9 9 9 6 5 4 5 7 13*** 67
9 Realteam 8 6 10 9 9 6 10 9 9**** 76
10 Orange Racing 7 10 8 8 10 10 9 10 7 79

* including a two point penalty
** including a one point penalty
*** plus a two point penalty
**** plus a one point penalty

Owner-driver ranking

1 Argo 6 4 2 2 4 5 7 4 6 40
2 Malizia – Yacht Club de Monaco***** 4 5 7 4 3 9 6 3 5 46
3 Orange Racing 7 10 8 8 10 10 9 10 7 79

Overall results after two events

Pos Team Riva Malcesine Tot
1 TEAM TILT 2 1 3
2 NORAUTO 1 2 3
3 GUNVOR SAILING 4 3 7
4 ARMIN STROM SAILING TEAM 3 6 9
5 ARGO 7 4 11
6 MALIZIA 8 5 13
7 TEAM ENGIE 5 8 13
8 SPINDRIFT RACING 6 11 17
9 MAMMA AIUTO ! 10 7 17
10 REALTEAM 10 9 19
11 ORANGE RACING 9 10 19

Photos by Max Ranchi   www.Maxranchi.com

gc32 rt today racing ph max ranchi (1)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

GC32 Malcesine Cup racing (Photo by Max Ranchi)

 

 

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Inoui (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Bella Mente, Open Season, H20, Supernikka, Windfall and Inoui division winners
Porto Cervo, 12 September 2015. Eighteen knots of scirocco wind and a rip-roaring race around the islands on the final day of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup & Rolex Maxi 72 World Championship provided the perfect end to a superlative week of competition in Porto Cervo. The 26th edition of the event, which attracted a fleet of 40 yachts ranging from 18 to 66 metres in length, was organized by Yacht Club Costa Smeralda together with title sponsor Rolex and the International Maxi Association.

Hap Fauth's Bella Mente (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Hap Fauth’s Bella Mente (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Hap Fauth’s Bella Mente, with a bullet and a third place in today’s two windward-leeward races, was crowned Rolex Maxi 72 World Champion 2015. The American team which boasts Terry Hutchinson on tactics managed to whisk victory from the grasp of Roberto Tomasini Grinover with his Robertissima III by just one point. Dieter Schön’s Momo claimed third place in her debut on the waters of the Costa Smeralda.

 

Maxi 72's at start (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Maxi 72’s at start (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

“It was just fantastic,” enthused a delighted Hap Fauth, “The level of competition was so high and everyone had fun. We had a great time and the organization and hospitality was excellent.”
At the conclusion of a coastal course of approximately 30 nautical miles Marco Vogele’s 33-metre Inoui was able to celebrate her victory over Viriella and Hetairos respectively in the Supermaxi division. Newly elected IMA President Thomas Bscher was also celebrating in the Wally division as his Open Season rounded off a week of near-perfect results with a second place in today’s race to claimed overall victory in the Wally division. After a fierce battle for second place throughout the week, Magic Carpet Cubed, owned by Sir Lindsay Owen Jones, took the silver prize with J One in third place on equal points.

 

Windfall (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Windfall (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

The record-breaking 100-foot Comanche, owned by Jim Clark and Kristy Hinze-Clark, gave spectacular performances throughout the week and word is she will be joined by several more pure racing machines for the next edition of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup.

(Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

(Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

In the Maxi division, which together with the Mini Maxis completed a slightly shorter coastal course, The Southern Wind yacht Windfall, owned by Michael Cotter claimed the Rolex prize and timepiece. Following an event-long leadership battle, Masimiliano Florio’s Grande Orazio Pioneer Investments had to settle for second place, just one point behind. The Swan 77 Tugela rounded off the podium finishers.
Thanks to a victory in today’s race Riccardo di Michele’s H2O managed to beat Shirlaf on countback as both yachts finished with the same score. Third place in the Mini Maxi RC/SOT division went to Wallyño.

The Mini Maxi Racing Division saw Roberto Lacorte’s 2015-launched Supernikka perform consistently well throughout the week to take first place overall ahead of Britain’s Spectre and Maximilian Klink’s Caro.
“It may seem redundant to say that this was a wonderful event – the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup is always a highlight of our sporting calendar – however this 26th edition of the regatta was truly exceptional.” Commented YCCS Commodore Riccardo Bonadeo “The fleet, the owners and the crews were all of an incredibly high standard and mother nature stepped in to provide almost perfect conditions.”

WALLY 77 J ONE, WALLY 94 GALMA AND 100FT COMANCHE (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

WALLY 77 J ONE, WALLY 94 GALMA AND 100FT COMANCHE (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Looking forward to the next Maxi event Bonadeo continued “The conclusion of a perfect event seems the perfect time to invite you all, if you haven’t already done so, to enrol for the very first edition of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Caribbean Cup taking place in April 2016 at our Caribbean home in Virgin Gorda where we are lucky enough to have another beautiful regatta course and constant trade winds.”
The YCCS calendar in the Mediterranean continues with the Sailing Champions League final which will see teams from across Europe and beyond competing on J70 boats from 18th to 20th September.

See all the results HERE

Wallys and Comanche (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Wallys and Comanche (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Dockside ambiance in Porto Cervo (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Dockside ambiance in Porto Cervo (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

With 40 yachts gathered in Porto Cervo, the 2015 edition of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup has attracted one of its largest and highest calibre entries in the event’s 35-year history. When Rolex first joined forces with the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) and the International Maxi Association (IMA) to sponsor the event for the first time in 1985, a 60ft yacht was considered to be a big beast. Fast-forward 30 years however, and the Swan 601 @Robas (FRA) is now the smallest in this impressive international line-up, while the 219ft Hetairos (CAY) is by far the largest.

Dockside Ambiance (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Dockside Ambiance (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Much of the fleet has been out training on the azure waters of the Costa Smeralda, enjoying the stunning scenery of Northern Sardinia’s wild and beautiful coastline but more importantly, making final checks on crew manoeuvres and refining the final 1/10th of a knot of boat speed. Jim and Kristy Hinze Clark must be happy with how Comanche (USA) is going right now. The recent line honours winner of the Rolex Fastnet Race has been designed primarily with offshore performance in mind, but this mean-looking 100-footer has been clocking speeds up to 30 knots during the strong wind lead-up to the regatta.

Jim Clark’s COMANCHE (USA) testing ahead of the start of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup 2015 (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

The navigators have one of the trickiest jobs at the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup, being required to keep a weather eye on the clouds above, as well as know what rocky dangers lurk beneath the surface. Tom Addis is one of the big-name navigators at this event, the Volvo Ocean Race veteran working at the back of Carla Cornelli’s Wally 107 Kenora (BVI). “Today’s mistral dies away and our attention turns to the south with a low pressure forming just north of Sicily. This will bring strengthening north-easterly to northerly breeze over us over the next few days.”

Tom Addis, navigator of Maximilian Klink's CARO Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Tom Addis, navigator of Maximilian Klink’s CARO Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

The week certainly looks set to offer up a good mix of conditions, which is exactly what most teams want. Among the five racing classes, the most closely fought contest is expected to come in the Rolex Maxi 72 World Championship. Newest of the six 72-footers is Dieter Schön’s Momo (GER) which has notched up some impressive victories in her debut season, not least winning her division at last month’s Rolex Fastnet Race. But Momo’s tactician Markus Wieser certainly doesn’t consider his team as the favourites. “All six boats are going very fast, and you couldn’t ask for better crews than you see here this week,” said the German professional. “Yes, Momo has had a very good season, although we were 2nd at the Giraglia Rolex Cup. This is the one that matters more than any other event, though. It’s the World Championship, and it’s one that we would love to win.”

Wieser has been impressed with Bella Mente’s (USA) boat speed in training, and owner Hap Fauth has put together an impressive team in his bid to repeat a sweet victory back in 2012. America’s Cup finallist Terry Hutchinson is calling tactics alongside other Cup veterans like navigator Ian Moore and strategist Adrian Stead. “The racing this week is going to be a game of feet and inches, where you take advantage of every opportunity, no matter how small,” said Hutchinson. “You can see why people can’t get enough of this place – great racing, organised by one of the top three yacht clubs in the world.”

40 teams attended the Skippers' Briefing (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

40 teams attended the Skippers’ Briefing (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

This evening the Skippers’ Briefing took place on the top deck of the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, with Principal Race Officer Peter Craig welcoming owners, skippers and crews for what promises to be a challenging, exhilarating week’s competition. “If there’s a better place in the world to go yacht racing, I don’t know about it,” said Craig. “The venue, the yacht club, are fantastic. And you look at the calibre of sailors here – bow to stern, these boats are packed with the very best in the world.”

Five days’ racing are scheduled from Monday 7 September to Saturday 12 September, with a lay day on Thursday.

Hetairos by Carlo Borlenghi

With a LOA of 66.7 meters, HETAIROS is the biggest boat in the fleet (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

.
Entry List 2015 Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup – Porto Cervo, Italy

@ROBAS
ARAGON
BLACK BETTY
BULTACO
CARO
COMANCHE
GALMA
GAETANA
GENIE OF THE LAMP
GERONIMO
GRANDE ORAZIO by Pioneer Investments
H2O
HETAIROS
INOUI
J ONE
KENORA
LUNZ AM MEER
LYRA
MAGIC CARPET CUBED
MY WAY 60
NAHITA
OPEN SEASON
RYOKAN 2
SENSEI
SHIRLAF
SOLLEONE
SPECTRE
SUPERNIKKA
TANGO G
TILAKKHANA
TUGELA
VIRIELLA
WALLY ῆO
WINDFALL
Y3K
BELLA MENTE
CAOL ILA R
JETHOU
MOMO
PROTEUS
ROBERTISSIMA III

Lionessa of Douglas GBR 6607R (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi )

Lionessa of Douglas GBR 6607R (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi )

The Rolex Swan Cup is a traditional sailing regatta that happens to take place in one of the most beautiful sailing venues in the world – Porto Cervo in Sardinia. Teams from 21 different nations make up the 93-boat fleet, and today the hundreds of sailors were making final preparations at the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) for the racing which begins on Tuesday. The high number of entries demonstrates the enduring success of one of the great partnerships in sailing – the 2014 edition marking the 30th anniversary of the collaboration between Rolex, Nautor’s Swan and the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda.
For the time being however, the sailors are focused less on the great legacy of the event and more on the ‘here and now’, with a few teams going for a run along the roads of northern Sardinia in a bid to get down to race-weight before the final weigh-in; or measuring in new sails; going through safety checks (you may not think you need a fog horn on the Costa Smeralda, but the regulations demand that every boat carries one!); or going for a final shake-down sail, testing equipment and practising the vital choreography that will ensure race-winning crew manoeuvres.
Dockside ambience in Porto Cervo for Swan Cup (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Dockside ambience in Porto Cervo for Swan Cup (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

This evening the 93 skippers sat down to a skipper’s briefing led by principal race officer Peter Craig, who reminded the navigators of the hazards on the race course and briefed them on what’s expected for the next six days of competition. Among those skippers is Tomek Ulatowski who took part in the first Rolex Swan Cup 30 years ago. “We were racing a Swan 39 called Desai, a Ron Holland design,” he recalls. “It was a great event with a lot of fun on the water and at the parties afterwards.”
Now sailing aboard his Swan 100 Varsovie, even today Ulatowski and his co-owner Ygal Ozechov cannot resist the charms of the Rolex Swan Cup. “We have taken part in every event since we took delivery of our boat in 2008, and we participated in others on our previous Swan, a 77-footer also called Varsovie.” Asked to reveal the secret of their successful partnership, Ozechov says: “I bring the cigars, Tomek brings the expertise.”
The beauty of the Rolex Swan Cup is that it remains a gentleman’s regatta – great competition on the water but with all rivalries left at the dock. In the evening it’s about having fun, sharing stories over drinks and dinner. Some owners are racing with their children, some with their parents, some with both. There are plenty of big-name competitors here from the professional world too, America’s Cup veterans such as Tommaso Chieffi, Paolo Cian, Hamish Pepper and Jochen Schümann.
Nefertiti GBR 9059R (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Nefertiti GBR 9059R (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

In the case of the three-time Olympic Champion from Germany, Schümann is looking to help Earlybird regain her Swan 45 world title which she last won here two years ago at the previous Rolex Swan Cup. Other winners from two years ago include the Swan 60 Bronenosec from Russia which has enjoyed a stellar racing season thus far in 2014, and the Swan 42 OD Natalia from Romania which can expect some stiff competition from three visiting American 42 ODs, not least Phil Lotz’s Arethusa which won the 2013 Rolex Swan Cup Caribbean.
The 93 boats are divided into six racing categories, Maxi, Grand Prix, Swan 60, Sparkman & Stephens, Swan 45s vying for the World title, and Swan 42 OD. Courses will be a mix of coastal and windward/leeward, and a long race.
Further information on the Rolex Swan Cup can be found at www.nautorswan.com and www.yccs.it .
Up the rig before racing (Photo by Rolex /  Carlo Borlenghi)

Up the rig before racing (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Jean-Charles Decaux's J ONE  leading the Wally fleet (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Jean-Charles Decaux’s J ONE leading the Wally fleet (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

 

Dramatic showdowns have been set up for the final races at the 2014 Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup. Verdicts in three classes will be decided during tomorrow’s decisive day: true proof of the close nature of the racing. All classes sailed a coastal course today with around seven knots from the north at the start, building to a 12-15 knot north-easterly midway through the race.

The Mini Maxi Rolex World Championship is living up to its pre-event billing as the tightest and most competitive in its five-year history. Heading into today’s critical coastal race, just two points separated the leading three teams.

Consistency, sound decision-making and taking only calculated risks are credited as the determining factors in such a tight championship. Andres Soriano’s Alegre, three-time runner-up, is proving the most reliable performer. “It’s going to be a very competitive week. One mistake and that’s that,” promised Soriano ahead of the competition. Today Alegre assumed impressive control of the 25-nm long coastal race after rounding the first mark well ahead of her rivals. Her lead remained unthreatened for the remainder of the race, which took yachts south to Mortoriotto, back up the coast into the Maddalena Archipelago and a brief glimpse of Bomb Alley, before turning north to Monaci and the run home.

ROBERTISSIMA III  trying to catch up with leader ALEGRE (Photo  by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

ROBERTISSIMA III trying to catch up with leader ALEGRE (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Robertissima III, the Italian-crewed boat (and former Rán 2, last year’s winning yacht), has enjoyed a terrific week and today claimed second place. She trails Alegre by three points ahead of tomorrow’s two scheduled windward/leeward races, and Alegre’s crew know from bitter experience that such a margin is vulnerable. “We’ve been playing averages. It would have been nice to have put more points between ourselves and Robertissima ahead of the final day, but these two boats now have a jump on the fleet,” said Alegre’s Olly Cameron. “We can’t let them [Robertissima] get away. We need to be cautious [tomorrow] and keep it close.”

The learning curve for Robertissima owner Roberto Tomasini Grinover and his crew has been steep but one they are mounting at impressive velocity. “We are an inexperienced team in this class. Less than a year ago, we were here looking at the 72-ft boats and said how wonderful they were,” explains tactician Vasco Vascotto. “It’s a dream to be part of this class – it is not only about great boats but top class teams. We want to be very competitive.”

Niklas Zennström’s Rán crew started the week as the defending champion and have experience in making dramatic comebacks in Porto Cervo, but today’s sixth place on his new Rán 5 has all but ended the crew’s chances of a fourth title in five years. A new champion is all but guaranteed after 2012 victor Bella Mente also struggled in today’s coastal race, leaving Hap Fauth’s crew in fourth.

Wally Form
Engaging competition and a dramatic final day is also offered by the Wally class. Four-time winner, Claus-Peter Offen and Y3K are tied on points with defending champion Jean-Charles Decaux and his J One crew. And one point behind lies Magic Carpet 3. Y3K performed better of the three teams today, finishing in third while J One claimed fourth and Owen-Jones’s Magic Carpet 3 had to settle for sixth.

“The Wally class is very strong,” explains Offen, President of the International Maxi Association, “with the two Wally Centos (Magic Carpet 3 and Open Season) and many other well-sailed yachts, it will not be easy for Y3K to win the Wally title back, but we are working on it.”

J-Class report
The only certainty in the J-Class is that a new champion will be crowned. Velsheda has failed to finish higher than third all week, leaving a three-way battle between Rainbow, Lionheart and Ranger for the title. The week’s largest boat, the 43.7m Lionheart holds a slender one-point advantage over Rainbow, three-time winner Ranger is a further point adrift.

Elsewhere, bullets today have handed Firefly (Supermaxi), Lupa of London (Mini Maxi Racing/Cruising) and Highland Fling (Maxi) insurmountable leads in their respective classes.

Racing ends tomorrow. Up to two windward/leeward races are scheduled for the Mini Maxi Rolex Worlds fleet, the J-Class and Wally, while the remaining classes will sail a coastal course.

A full review of the 25th edition of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup will be available tomorrow.

Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup
The Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup is organized by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) and the International Maxi Association (IMA). Rolex has been title sponsor since 1985.

 

Mini Maxi Bowmen Calling the start (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

Mini Maxi Bowmen Calling the start (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

2014 MAXI YACHT ROLEX CUP – PROVISIONAL RESULTS DAY 4
Place, Boat Name, Boat Owner, Races; Total Points

Mini Maxi Rolex World Championship
1. ALEGRE (GBR), Alegre Yachting Ltd., 1.5-1-3-4-(5)-1.5; 11
2. ROBERTISSIMA (CAY), Roberto Tomasini, 6-2-1-(5)-2-3; 14
3. RÁN 5 (GBR), Niklas Zennstrom 4.5-3-2-2-(7)-9; 20.5

Mini Maxi R/C
1. LUPA OF LONDON (GBR), Jeremy Pilkington, 1-1-2-1; 5
2. BRONENOSEC (RUS), Alpenberg S.A., 4-2-1-2; 9
3. AROBAS (FRA), Gerard Logel, 2-4-3-3; 12

Maxi Racing
1. HIGHLAND FLING XI (MON), Irvine Laidlaw, 1-1-1-1; 4
2. ODIN (CAY), Tom Siebel, 2-2-2-2; 8
3. BRISTOLIAN (GBR), Bristolian Marine Ltd., 4-4-3-3; 14

J-Class
1. LIONHEART (GBR), Stichting Lionheart Syndicate, (4)-1-2-2-1; 6
2. RAINBOW (NED), SPF JH2, 2-3-1-1-(4); 7
3. RANGER (CAY), R.S.V. Ltd., 1-2-(4)-3-2; 8

Supermaxi
1. FIREFLY (NED), Eric Bijlsma, 1-1-2-1; 5
2. INOUI (SUI), Marco Vögele, 2-2-1-2; 7
3. VIRIELLA (ITA), Vittorio Moretti, 3-3-3-3; 12

Wally
1. Y3K (GER), Claus Peter Offen, (3)-2-1-3-2; 8
2. J ONE (GBR), Jean Charles Decaux, 1-(3)-2-2-3; 8
3. MAGIC CARPET 3 (GBR), Sir Lindsey Owen Jones, 2-1-(5)-1-5; 9

Complete results may be found here

The fleet getting to Mortoriotto rock under spinnaker (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

The fleet getting to Mortoriotto rock under spinnaker (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

 

AERIAL VIEW OF SAINT-TROPEZ'S VIEUX PORT AND THE GIRAGLIA ROLEX CUP FLEET DURING THE 2013 EDITION BY Rolex - Carlo Borlenghi

AERIAL VIEW OF SAINT-TROPEZ’S VIEUX PORT AND THE GIRAGLIA ROLEX CUP FLEET DURING THE 2013 EDITION BY Rolex – Carlo Borlenghi

 

The Giraglia Rolex Cup has been an annual international rendezvous for over 60 years. It is more than simply a sailing event, exhibiting spirited and fair-minded competition, genuine camaraderie among the participants and sublime locations. Sailors are drawn from all corners of the world and all segments of the sport to take part in what has become one of the “must-do” events of the yacht-racing year. And, in 2014, the Giraglia Rolex Cup will add new lustre to its character by finishing in Monte-Carlo, Monaco for the first and only time in its history.

Race Start (Photo by Rolex Carlo Borlenghi)

Race Start (Photo by Rolex Carlo Borlenghi)

 

Regularly attracting in excess of 200 yachts for the week of competition, the Giraglia Rolex Cup is a kaleidoscope of nationalities, great racing and convivial social occasions. The decision to finish the race in Monte-Carlo has been made in keeping with the spirit of this great Mediterranean occasion. It is the Yacht Club Italiano’s contribution towards the inauguration of the stunning new clubhouse of its twin club, the Yacht Club de Monaco, which has been designed by the world-renowned architect Lord Foster and will open its doors for the first time during the final days of the Giraglia Rolex Cup. As a partner of both yacht clubs, Rolex is fully supportive of this demonstration of comradeship and is proud to be a participant in this landmark moment in the life of the race and one of the world’s most respected yacht clubs.

TEAM VISION FUTURE, Sail n: SUI19, Owner: MICHAEL MERGUI, Group A (IRC Classes 0-1-2) (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi )

TEAM VISION FUTURE, Sail n: SUI19, Owner: MICHAEL MERGUI, Group A (IRC Classes 0-1-2) (Photo by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi )

The 62nd edition of this classic adventure will take place from 13 to 21 June 2014. Following a prologue race from Sanremo (13 June) the fleet will gather in Saint-Tropez for three days of inshore competition (15 – 17 June) before embarking on a 248-nautical mile offshore race (starting 18 June) to Monte-Carlo, via the Giraglia, the rocky outcrop off the northern tip of Corsica. Organized by the Yacht Club Italiano in conjunction with the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez, the Yacht Club de France, the Yacht Club Sanremo and, this year, the Yacht Club de Monaco, Rolex has been involved since 1998 and, in partnership with the organizers, has been integral to the regatta’s continued growth in stature.

ETHOU, Sail n: GBR 74R, Owner: SIR PETER OGDEN, Group 0 (IRC >18.29 mt) STIG, Sail n: ITA65000, Owner: ALESSANDRO ROMBELLI, Group 0 (IRC >18.29 mt) ALEGRE, Sail n: GBR8728R, Owner: OLLY CAMERON, Group 0 (IRC >18.29 mt) rounding the Giraglia Rock (PHoto by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi )

ETHOU, Sail n: GBR 74R, Owner: SIR PETER OGDEN, Group 0 (IRC >18.29 mt) STIG, Sail n: ITA65000, Owner: ALESSANDRO ROMBELLI, Group 0 (IRC >18.29 mt) ALEGRE, Sail n: GBR8728R, Owner: OLLY CAMERON, Group 0 (IRC >18.29 mt) rounding the Giraglia Rock (PHoto by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi )

Event Programme

13 June: Start prologue race, Sanremo – Saint-Tropez

15 – 17 June: Inshore racing, Saint-Tropez

17 June: Prize giving inshore racing, Saint Tropez

18 June: Start Giraglia Rolex Cup race, Saint-Tropez – La Fourmigue – Giraglia – Monte-Carlo

21 June: Final prize giving, Yacht Club de Monaco, Monte-Carlo

For more detailed information about the 2014 Giraglia Rolex Cup including race documents please visit the Yacht Club Italiano website.30104_0_2_photo_GRC14_CourseMap