Please select your home edition
Edition
Barton Marine 2019 728x90
Product Feature
Zhik Sailing Glove
Zhik Sailing Glove
Boat Insurance from Noble Marine


Full racing risks
New for old cover
www.noblemarine.co.uk

Rolex Giraglia 2019 - Day 6: Line honours for Rambler but no records broken

by Yacht Club Italiano 13 Jun 2019 19:59 BST 9-11 June 2019
Rambler is first to tie-up after the Rolex Giraglia Offshore Race © Eugenia Bakunova / www.mainsail.ru

The Mediterranean's reputation for light wind yacht racing was dented today, with the lead boats regularly experiencing 20-30 knot winds in the Rolex Giraglia's offshore race - organised jointly by Yacht Club Italiano, Yacht Club de Monaco and Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez and supported by the International Maxi Association (IMA).

Starting from the Golfe de Saint-Tropez at 12:35 yesterday, the maxi fleet competing in this, the fourth and penultimate event in the IMA's 2018-19 Mediterranean Maxi Offshore Challenge, first rounded a turning mark to the west off Cavalaire-sur-Mer. They then continued to the Giraglia Rock off northeast Corsica before turning sharply to the WNW bound for the finish, this year, in Monaco.

From the outset, George David's Rambler 88 was favourite for line honours in Rolex Giraglia. The question was - would the American maxi, sailing her first ever Rolex Giraglia, break the race record of 14 hours, 56 minutes and 18 seconds set by Igor Simi's 100ft maxi Esimit Europa 2 in 2012? This would require Rambler 88 finishing before 03:31:18 today.

Heading to the Cavalaire turning mark, George David said that they had been pleased with their upwind speed, the result of modifications made to Rambler 88 over the winter such as fitting a new lighter rig, enabling a reduction in bulb weight and an overall reduction of 1.5 tonnes. "Normally in a breeze Magic Carpet 3 is a click faster, but now it is the other way around," observes David.

Once out into the open sea and blasting towards the Giraglia Rock, Rambler 88 breaking the record seemed very possible. "This boat is unbeatable when it is 70-110 degrees TWA and 25 knots: We just exploded downwind - and left a lot of people behind," described David.

It was still looking good after rounding the Giraglia Rock at dusk, when they hardened up for the port tack fetch towards the finish.

But sadly it was not to be. David explained: "We thought the record was close until about an 1 hour 20 minutes out when we parked for almost an hour - that was the margin right there. But that is what happens when you come into Monaco with its big hills and also if you finish races at 3-5am when 'bad things' normally happen!" Rambler 88 ghosted across the finish line at 04:35:35, just over an hour outside the record.

Tactician Brad Butterworth added: "We wanted to come in from the south, which is what we did, but we got headed and ended up tacking on to starboard. Then we sailed to within three miles of here and just stopped..."

Rambler 88's park-up benefited those astern, especially the next most highly rated boat under IRC - Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones' WallyCento Magic Carpet 3, the 2015 overall and 2016 line honours Rolex Giraglia winner. She crossed the line just 35 minutes later, having slowed but not stopped.

While it was a good result, Owen-Jones said that the conditions generally through the race had favoured their opponent. "It was a really fast downwind in which we know that the pure racing canting keel boats will always been ahead. Our hope was that on the way back there would be a lot of uncertainty, the wind would have dropped /it'd all be very tactical. But it was a slog back and not even dead upwind, but a fetch. So we dreamed for a couple of minutes but it wasn't to be..."

Owen-Jones added he was pleased to see the Giraglia Rock at dusk rather than the subsequent dawn. Their time was a personal best by a considerable way.

Magic Carpet 3's race was hampered by taking on water in their bow compartment where the anchor comes in, while their 50 tonne boat blasted downwind at 25 knots.

Next arrivals into Monaco after dawn were Alex Schaerers Maxi 72 Caol Ila R and Sir Peter Ogdens Jethou, Dario Ferraris Cannonball having not started yesterday. While Jethou had led out of the Golfe de Saint-Tropez it was Caol Ila R that finished 24 minutes ahead of her longer, higher rated rival.

Initially a computer failure had forced Jethou to give the coast a wider berth, allowing Caol Ila R through. Then after the turning mark, Jethou had hoisted their A4 and, as tactician Paul Campbell-James described it, Jethou was launched and gained loads. Sadly the wild sleighride lasted just an hour before the A4 blew up and they had to hoist their Code 0, offering them only 87% VMG on polars.

Common to the rides on both 70 footers was how profoundly wet it was, with constant green water being blasted down the deck in the downwind conditions to the Giraglia Rock. We spent the whole time with water coming over the bow, continued Campbell-James. We had sealed up the openings but wherever that a rope goes through the deck, water was just pouring in. Down below it was like a swimming pool with the bilge pumps running and people bailing constantly. However personally he had relished the three hours he spent high speed downwind helming, as they set out for Giraglia.

Again, unlike Rambler 88, Jethou saw the wind get light but only for around five minutes and they didnt stop on the approach to Monaco.

This was also the case for Caol Ila R. They had employed a different tactic for the upwind leg back to Monaco, as navigator Will Oxley explained: We chose to sail a slightly lower, faster course because we expected that there would be some sort of northeasterly transition close to the shore. That we did fine, so we didnt see too much of what happened to Rambler.

At the time of writing Caol Ila R is leading the race for the IRC prize for the Rolex Giraglia, but with the majority of the fleet still racing, it is possible that one of the smaller boats could still take the prize.

www.rolexgiraglia.com

Related Articles

Persico 69F Revolution overall
"Never give up" is the mantra of this crucial day in Garda Never give up, even if you're defeated and end up in the lower part of the table, even if at the beginning of the crucial race you capsize, even if in the final your principal opponent starts like a rocket. Posted on 19 Aug
Persico 69F Revolution day 2
Lots of "stop and go" on Lake Garda The second day of Persico 69F Revolution FCL welcomed the teams in water at breakfast time with 17 knots from North and wave formed: twenty minutes later two of the four teams were already in the finals. Posted on 19 Aug
Persico 69F Revolution first semifinal
The key is chosing when to foil and when to go displacement mode A day with "all round" conditions, with four flights "full foil" in the morning, then storm and two more races in the afternoon, with lot of low wind in displacement mode for two-thirds of the circuit. Posted on 18 Aug
Persico 69F Revolution Act 2 starts tomorrow
The ingredients are all in... The second act of the Persico Revolution starts tomorrow, Monday August 17, in Gargnano with 16 teams at the starting line, and the table formula is back with a total of 14 races, each with four teams as protagonists. Posted on 16 Aug
Persico 69F Revolution Cup overall
Dutch Sail Orange comes home as the winner It's Dutch Sail Orange (van Stekelenborg-Houtman-Becker-Asbeek Brusse) who is the winner of the first Persico 69F Revolution, for teams Under 25. Posted on 12 Aug
Persico 69F Revolution Cup day 2
Two flights held today - tomorrow will be a crucial day Today's wind was in command on the Brescia side of Lake Garda. In fact the weather conditions have slowed down the program of Persico 69F Revolution. Posted on 11 Aug
Persico 69F Revolution Cup: War on the foil
The difference is in the courage to dare From "Classic Garda Of Gargnano" to a circuit for 69F. During the first day of revolution cup there have been 6 flight played and a big run around the buoys arranged as quadrilateral path with a reaching start. Posted on 11 Aug
Persico 69F Revolution Cup starts Friday
Which are the ingredients of a (good) revolution? From theory to practice: The Revolution starts on Friday with 16 teams Under 25 on water, table formula, 12 races in three days, arbitrage on water, quadrilateral course and international teams and very young people. This week, on the line, there's a lot. Posted on 7 Aug
Giraglia Race has been postponed
New dates announced in 2021 The decision made was unavoidable, in line with the numerous cancellations that have affected all sports at all levels, all over the world. Posted on 18 Apr
Entry open for Rolex Giraglia Race 2020
Beginning with the Sanremo-Saint Tropez race on June 5th The 68th edition of this Mediterranean Classic is now open for entries and the notice of race is available online. From June 5-13 between St Tropez and Genoa. Posted on 24 Feb