Cannes delivers perfect conditions for last day of Regates Royales

The 36th edition of the Régates Royales – Trophée Panerai drew on a close on Saturday. The five day regatta ended in grand style and in typical Cote d'Azur conditions, with blue skies, warm weather and light airs. Four races for the Classics and ten for the 12 Metres crowned this year's winners: Vanity V, Chinook, Mariquita, Sagittarius, Dorade, Sirius, Freya and Speedbird.

Classics fight to the very last metre

On the final day of the Régates Royales crews enjoyed almost summer-like conditions with light winds that nevertheless allowed the race committee to launch a coastal race for the Classics. The course was shortened to respect the busy social schedule and let the crews join the prize-giving ceremony in the race village. The last race gave some the chance to bounce back and some the opportunity to confirm their leadership. In the Big Boats' group where Mariquita got gold, she was tied at points with Moonbeam IV, but with a higher number of wins, while Moonbeam of Fife III finished in third. In the Vintage Marconi under 15 metres, Dorade easily led from the beginning and finished with an impressive score of 3 points out of 4 races, followed by The Blue Peter and Skylark, tied at points while Manitou, third up until the eve of the final, slipped off the podium.

Among the Spirit of Tradition, Shamrock V's powerful sail area was not enough to steal victory from Freya 2003 that clinched it with only one point to spare, Scherzo finished in third at four points from the leader. Sirius won almost undisputedly in the Vintage Marconi under 15m, leaving behind her fellow Italian crews on Jalina and Cholita. In the Tofinou class Speedbird ended with a clear score of four wins.

In some classes the winner wasn't decided until the very last race. In the Vintage Gaffers Chinook trailed Eva and Duet 1926 from the start, but finally managed to pull off victory with a 1 point margin on Duet 1926 and two on Eva, who earned a bronze. Similarly in the Classics division, Sagittarius clinched victory thanks to the last race, pushing Namib down from the highest step of the podium, and Naif finished in third.

Podium by class

Big Boats: Mariquita, Moonbeam IV, Moonbeam of Fife III

Vintage Gaffers: Chinook, Duet 1926, Eva

Classics: Sagittarius, Namib, Naif

Vintage Marconi under 15 m: Dorade, The Blue Peter, Skylark

Vintage Marconi over 15m: Sirius, Jalina, Cholita

Spirit of Tradition: Freya 2003, Shamrock V, Scherzo

Tofinou: Speedbird, Camomille, Cambronne

Vanity V wins the 12 Metres

The week has been very intense for the 12 Metre class, with a strong debut by Vanity V and Wings that constantly battled for final victory during the rest of the series. So much so, that on the eve of the final day, the two leaders were distanced by a mere point but, at the end of the much contested 10-race series, Vanity V – skippered by Dane Bjorn Westergaard and flying the flag of the Royal Danish Yacht Club – jumped on the highest step of the podium, beating Wings by 3 points and Vim by 7 points. Germany's Trivia, helmed by Wilfried Beeck finished in fourth.

See you next year

We were incredibly lucky for this 36th edition of the Régates Royales, the organization onshore and ashore has been almost perfect and I wish to thank everyone, the boat owners, the sailors and the volunteers. The mix of all these people's efforts, together with the beauty of the classic yachts and great sailing conditions, contributed to the regatta's success. The crews have, as usual, given their best and made the Bay of Cannes coming alive once again. I'm delighted for the Yacht Club de Cannes, we had a fantastic racing week. We do invite all the crews to join us again next year for the 37th edition, au revoir!” said Jacques Flori, President of the Yacht Club de Cannes.

His words were echoed by a pleased Gérard Pascalini, general manager of the Société des Régates de Cannes, organising body of the Régates Royales – Trophée Panerai. “I would sign on for another edition like the one that just ended. The weather conditions have been excellent, despite a very windy first day, and everything went smoothly. The atmosphere, the crews, the boats, the weather, everything was perfect. And almost all the boats agreed to have several guests on board, getting the public and the crews closer. I hope we will able to replicate this in 2015, maybe adding a couple of new ideas, because one always need to improve things.”

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