The end of the coastal races. Tomorrow will see the start of the long race of 241 miles
Light winds persist on the racecourses of Saint-Tropez for the two fleets which today were back racing on the same course, of 19 miles for the bigger yachts and 13 for the smaller. For everyone, it was the third and last race in the French phase of the Rolex Giraglia which ends today with the start of the offshore tomorrow at midday. On the water today, a light E/SE wind of 7/8 kn was not constant, influenced by several thunderstorms that in the early afternoon hit the area.
First the start was Group 0 followed by Groups 1 and 2. At 1105 the Maxis started with the big 100’ Black Jack which took the lead of the fleet and finished the course in one hour 52 minutes. Among the 0s, the result in corrected time proved a business reserved for the 72 and 75 footers with today’s rankings confirming the winners of the past days: Dario Ferrari’s Pepe Cannonball won in the IRC 1, Wallyño owned by Benoit de Froidmont in the 2s and Valter Pizzoli’s Swan 601 Les Amis in the ORC class.
In the other groups, the starts were very tense with several protests that delayed the publication of the rankings, in this case the final ranking was the formalisation of the provisional one with the two 52’ Jolt and Red Bandit first and second with just one point apart and so, with rankings remaining open right to the last second among the IRC 1s. In third place was the Ker 46 Lisa R owned by Giovanni di Vincenzo, overall winner of the Rolex Giraglia 2022.
“We have an excellent season behind us,” said Francesco Bertone, tactician of Lisa R before the start, “we won the Tre Golfi regatta and were fourth in the European IRC a few weeks ago. We are coming to the Rolex Giraglia in top form and with the boat very well prepared. The weather remains the great unknown, though we expect a fast race with the easterly which will be your principal motor of the long race.”
Among the IRC 2 Guy Clayes’ JPK 10.10 Expresso 3 dominated (1,1,4) ahead of the J/92 Bagatelle and the X-35 Le Lupin who finished the three races tied at 12 points each, with the J/92 holding onto second place thanks to today’s victory.
In ORC 1, it was fought out between Swans, with two 45s and a 42 taking the first three places: Alberto de Castro’s Brujo, Fernando Chain’s From Now On and the 42 Suspiria the Revenge owned by Antonio Venneri. Among the ORC 2, a hat-trick for the 11.98 Concrete Investing To Be owned by Stefano Rusconi, which came first in all three races. Behind was the C J/112 Jenis in second place in front of the X-35 Imxtinente owned by Adelio Frixione.
Meanwhile on the quays of Saint-Tropez drenched by the rain of frequent thunderstorms, crews are trying to find the weather model which, as the start draws near, is becoming increasingly less approximate. “It will certainly be a fast Giraglia,” says Andrea Caracci, navigator on the NEO 570 Carbonita, “thanks to general instability that should bring winds from the north-east all along the course. And navigation programs give us, at worst, a 30 hour regatta.”
Most people are looking at the great Black Jack, holder of the record in the 2012 Rolex Giraglia as Esimit Europa 2, though the forecasts, encouraging as they are, don’t seem to promise a record edition. But will have to wait until tomorrow morning for more precise evaluation.
The long race will start tomorrow at midday. The Rolex Giraglia 70 will be live on the RolexGiraglia website from tomorrow June 14, 2023 at 11.15 with technical commentary by Rachele Vitello and James Boyd who will follow all the starting phases, while on the water there will be Bacci del Buono and Matteo Capurro.
The Rolex Giraglia
The Giraglia was conceived in 1953 as an offshore regatta of 241 nautical miles. Since then it has grown and today includes the approaching race from Sanremo and three days of coastal races in the Bay of Saint-Tropez. In 2023 this classic regatta celebrates its 70th anniversary. The Yacht Club Italiano organises the Rolex Giraglia with the collaboration of the Yacht Club Sanremo and the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez. With the patronage of: Yacht Club de France, the Union Nationale pour la Course au Large (UNCL), International Maxi Association (IMA), Municipality of Saint-Tropez, Municipality of Genoa and Municipality of Sanremo. B&G and North Sails are technical Partners.
La Rolex Giraglia is valid for the IRC-UNCL Mediterranean Championship and is part of the IMA 2023 Mediterranean Maxi Offshore Challenge.
Rolex has been a title partner of Rolex Giraglia since 1998.