Svea doubles down in the J Class on the opening day of the Superyacht Cup Palma 2024

The Superyacht Cup Palma got underway in fine style on Wednesday with the J Class again demonstrating what makes them such an eye-catching addition to any regatta, putting on a show of elegance and power with two windward-leeward races.

J Race Day — a riveting prologue to the Superyacht Cup Palma’s full fleet racing albeit under untypical grey skies — saw Svea kick things off with a win in the first race, following a short delay as the breeze settled in.

Though last to cross the start line, behind her regular sparring partner Velsheda and the newly refitted Rainbow which was making her first racing outing in several years, Svea made a breakout alone to the right of the racecourse, a decisive move which put her on track to take the win by a six-minute margin over Rainbow.

J Class on the opening day of the Superyacht Cup Palma 2024

Then the second race delivered another outstanding Svea performance with a second victory — though this time only by a minute from Rainbow — with the Swedish flagged yacht putting down a solid marker and making clear her intention of repeating her 2022 class victory. Velsheda meanwhile, who took J Class honours last year and an overall SYC win in 2018, will no doubt be determined to thwart that ambition starting Thursday.

“It was light out there today but there were two proper races and the race committee did a great job in getting us away,” said Grant Simmer, strategist on Velsheda.

“The shifts were more important than sheer boatspeed, and as strategist I missed a couple of big ones — so tomorrow we are expecting a bit more breeze for the coastal race, then a day of windward-leeward and another coastal race, so there is all to play for,” he added.

J Class on the opening day of the Superyacht Cup Palma 2024

However, perhaps the most satisfied on the opening day was Rainbow with her two second places. Last seen at SYC in 2014 this was her first competitive outing in a while, with a new and experienced owner out to make a winning debut.

Racing was followed by the Captains’ Briefing at the Real Club Náutico de Palma, SYC’s long-standing race management partner and host, with welcoming remarks by SYC Event Director Kate Branagh and double sailing Olympic Gold medal winner Shirley Robertson OBE, the recently appointed Manager of SYRA, the Super Yacht Racing Association. Owners, captains and crews were then invited to the Pendennis Welcome Cocktail on the RCNP terrace.

The Superyacht Cup Palma gets fully underway for all racing classes on Thursday with Pantaenius Race Day, the first of three days of full-on racing out on the Bay of Palma.

J Class on the opening day of the Superyacht Cup Palma 2024

Please click here for today’s results.

Photos ©SAILING ENERGY
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