Bol d’Or Mirabaud 2021 almost back to normal

Geneva: The world’s greatest lake regatta, Bol d’Or Mirabaud, is back after being cancelled last year for the first time in its history, so it is therefore an immense satisfaction for the organising team and competitors to be a short time from the starting gun of the 82nd edition.

The start will take place Saturday, June 12 at 10:00am local time, offshore of the Société Nautique de Genève.

With more than 400 boats registered, and 2,000 crew, this edition should be memorable. The field is extremely tough, with the notable first appearance of TF35 hydrofoil catamarans, as well as numerous other innovative and spectacular sailboats. The event will again feature racing aboard popular classes such as Surprises (70 registered) or Grand Surprises (40 boats).

“We’re really looking forward to welcoming all competitors, amateurs and professionals, on Lake Geneva this weekend,” declares Rodolphe Gautier, president of the organising committee.

“Although racing will go ahead, we are minus the usual land-based festivities, due to the public health situation. However, our event will the first in Switzerland to welcome so many participants, obviously adhering to current safety directives.

“We’ve worked very hard to achieve this small miracle, and I want to extend a special thank you to those who made it possible, starting with government authorities of the Geneva and Vaud cantons as well as the Haute Savoie prefecture. We also thank the volunteers and organising committee members who worked long hours in a difficult situation.”

The Société Nautique de Genève will be closed to the public this year. Spectators will nonetheless be able to follow key moments of the race from different vantage points around the Lake, so long as they follow social distance rules.

Beyond the simple fact that it’s taking place, the 2021 Bol d’Or Mirabaud will be exceptional, serving as a theatre for numerous fascinating firsts.

The new TCF35 hydrofoil catamarans will compete in the BOM for the first time. Launched a year ago, they took advantage of last year’s postponement to continue to refine their design.

Thomas Jundt’s formidable QFX will be competing in its first BOM and could achieve an impressive feat if conditions are right. Eric Monnin will also be there with his Monofoil Gonet, which has yet to try weather conditions that can test her true potential.

The 69F hydrofoil monohulls from the Italian shipyard, Persico, could also crash the party, but their owners are awaiting the latest weather reports before confirming their participation.

Both Pierre-Yves Jorand and Christian Wahl could set new records for the number of wins if either is victorious for the eighth time in his career.

The record to beat is 5:01:50 for multihulls (set in 1994 by the trimaran Triga IV) and 8:09:33 for monohulls (set in 2014 by Syz & Co).

The famous French skipper, Jean Le Cam, fourth in the last Vendée Globe, will be present at the Société Nautique de Genève starting Friday and will actively contribute to the opening ceremony as well as to other activities on the race’s sidelines as BOM21 Ambassador.

The experts at MeteoSwiss are convinced that a light, thermal breeze will prevail on Saturday, followed by a stronger “Bise” on Sunday.

The ACVL-SRS Trophy will reward the best monohull in corrected time, regardless of the size of the boat. The finishing time is multiplied by the coefficient of each boat, allowing “small” boats to compete against big ones.

Favourites for this trophy are numerous, such as Surprises or the 2019 winners, which included a Modulo 93, a Grand Surprise and a Melges 32.