Tre Golfi Offshore race gest underway. Maxi and ORC fleets on their way to CapriNaples, May 15 2021
Following on from the four days of racing at the Maxi Yacht Capri Trophy in Capri, Italy, racing for the maxi yachts continued with Rolex Capri Sailing Week’s offshore race, the historic offshore race Regata dei Tre Golfi, the second event in the International Maxi Association’s Mediterranean Maxi Offshore Challenge. On Saturday evening a record-sized fleet of over 110 boats took the start line of this off Borgo Santa Lucia in Naples, among them 11 maxis.
For the first time, the traditional midnight start of the race, following a grand soirée at the host club, the Circolo del Remo e della Vela Italia, did not take place. Instead on Saturday morning there was a flag-raising ceremony attended by municipal and sporting dignitaries, plus Francesco Lo Schiavo, President of FIV Campania V Zona and the special patron of the event, Neapolitan actress Maria Vera Ratti. The evening dinner was cancelled as the start had to be brought forward to 19.30 for the maxis (the larger ORC fleet setting sail at 1900) due to the local curfew in place to help curb the pandemic.
To make up for this, the CRVI presented all competitors with a special box containing typical Neapolitan specialties and wine.
The fleet got away in perfect conditions in the Gulf of Naples in a breeze of 15 knots veering from the west to northwest. These conditions were forecast to hold for the upwind leg to the turning mark at the island of Ponza, the northernmost limit of the Tre Golfi’s 150 mile course. From there the boats return south, with the option of leaving Capri to port or starboard before rounding the small Li Galli islands off the south side of the Sorrento Peninsula and returning to the finish line off Capri’s Marina Grande.
Given the forecast, the fastest yachts are expected to complete the course in 20-24 hours.
Among the favourites are Pendragon VI, campaigned by new International Maxi Association member Carlo Alberini and his LightBay Sailing Team including Slovenian tactician Branko Brcin.
Also to watch is Fra' Diavolo, the Mylius 18e35, owned by Vincenzo Addessi on which Andrea Fornaro is calling tactics. Fresh from victory at the Maxi Yacht Capri Trophy, Fra' Diavolo must maintain her winning streak in order to claim the Rolex Trophy, which will go to the yacht with the best combined score from the MYCT and the Tre Golfi.
From the start off Naples, competitors will race to Ponza before returning to round the Li Galli rocks off Positano. The fleet will cross the finish line in Capri, after approximately 150 miles of racing.
The fleet competing in the ORC European Championship will have until Monday 17 to complete the offshore race, making their base then in Capri for the second phase of the championship. From Tuesday 18 to Thursday 20 May, 3 days of inshore racing - with a total of 6 races scheduled, including the offshore - will be held to assign the title of ORC European Champion 2021.
The racing can be followed live with the online tracking from the event' website.
All information on the race, official announcements and results are available on the official website rolexcaprisailingweek.com
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