Nicola Borgatello e Silvio Sambo sailing DH on Demon X, ph. A.Carloni

Nicola Borgatello e Silvio Sambo sailing DH on Demon X, ph. A.Carloni

Thirty Teams Ready for Battle at the 2024 ORC Double-Handed European Championship


20/04/2024 - 09:40

 Thirty Double-Handed teams from four nations are poised to do battle in less than two weeks at the 30th annual running of La Duecento, a popular 200-mile race in the upper Adriatic organized by Circolo Nautico Porto Santa Margherita (CNSM). These teams will also be competing for podium medals as part of the 2024 ORC Double-Handed European Championship, now in its second year and the first of several World and European Championship events on the 2024 international racing calendar organized by the Offshore Racing Congress (ORC).

The event is a simple one-race, winner-take-all format where after a few days of registration and preparation the fleet will start the race on Friday 3 May and sail from Caorle to Susak in Croatia and return. ORC DH European Champion medals will be awarded to the winning teams in three classes at the prizegiving ceremony held on Sunday 5 May, with recognition also given to teams composed of all amateur Corinthian sailors.

Scoring for La Duecento will be using the ORC’s Weather Routing Scoring (WRS) method, an innovation introduced this year for offshore races in ORC European and World Championship events. WRS uses each entry’s polar performance data combined with the latest available high-resolution weather models to determine a Time-on-Time rating for the boat for the race.

With WRS each boat’s score will be determined by how well they performed relative to the predicted weather conditions they would encounter during the race, thus ensuring a more fair field of play for all entries, large and small, fast and slow.

Among the diverse range of nationalities, ages, genders, talents and backgrounds among the 30 teams entered in the race is one all-female team: Petra Kliba (CRO) and Steffi Edeler (GER) racing on their First 36 MANA. Petra is a sailor from Pula, who circumnavigated the world at the age of 19 and continues with projects dedicated to women. 

"Sailing is still predominantly a male sport today, and for over 20 years I have been dedicating my efforts to establishing women's teams worldwide that will compete equally on the race course. I have brought together female sailors whom I have met during my 30-year sailing career into my project PETRA KLIBA WOMEN SAILING TEAM. We have female sailors from seven European countries whom I have met through various sailing projects.”

Last year Petra and her team sailed on a large Maxi yacht, but this year have chosen a Beneteau First 36 more suited to Double-Handed racing. “We sailed the Full Moon Regatta with a full crew in Pula,” she said, “and will do the same at the Barcolana in Trieste in October.”

Petra is very excited about racing in the ORC Double-Handed Europeans with Steffi Edeler, who has for the past decade been part of the legendary German all-female crew on their DK46 named TUTIMA. “We hardly know the boat after only one event, but we will give it our best, as always. We are sailing in my home waters, so I hope this can help. I want to have fun, sail downwind, and do my best - the numbers and luck will decide the rest,” she says.

Mana First 36 of Petra Kliba

There are two family teams are on the entry list, with one of them, the Italian father-son team of Mauro and Giovanni Trevisan on their Millenium 40R HAURAKI, taking line honors in last year’s La Duecento but were second in corrected time with only a 16-minute margin after 45 hours of racing. The highlight of their team’s success was winning the 2023 DH Italian Offshore Championship in Class B. “Since 2014, we have shared the same passion for sailing not only during the race but also every evening at home and during the "shipyard moments" in the winter, when we optimize and prepare our boat,” says father and skipper Mauro. 

“La Duecento is not a long race, but thanks to its interesting route it contains several potential pitfalls,” Mauro said. “It's not the first time we've raced on this route, but it leaves a different impression every time. This year's edition will have a different “flavor” being the ORC DH European Championship, and even though the route is not new to us, the level of the fleet is very high, which will test us,” he said. The Trevisan’s are excited to start the race in Caorle, which is like a second home for a father-son team, because this is where it all started for them.

HAURAKI (Millennium 40 R) - Mauro and Giovanni Trevisan (YC Adriaco) © Andrea Carloni

The other family team in this race is Oreste Maran sailing with his daughter Sofia as a co-skipper on their First 40.7 ALI (ITA). “We are not experts, but with a bit of passion we try to have fun and, why not, bring home some prizes,” says Oreste.

“Our experience is limited to short races (80-100 miles), so this 200-mile race is a new adventure. We have gotten on the podium multiple times with this fast boat, including winning a 50x2 race in the open class.”

Competing with his daughter is what excites Oreste most about this race. “I’m excited about the atmosphere I expect to find. We have no particular expectation on winning, but you can never say never,” he says playfully about their potential for achievement.

Some notable entries in this fleet from recent ORC championship event podiums include Annis Corrado’s Italia 9.98 LADY DAY, which, with a full crew, was the best Corinthian Class C team at the 2022 ORC Worlds in Porto Cervo, 3rd place in Class C and best Corinthian team at the 2022 ORC Mediterranean Championship, and third in Class C at the ORC Worlds in 2019 in Sibenik, Croatia and at the 2017 ORC Worlds in Trieste. Corrado is teamed up with well-known sailor Alberto Lonza, and the two are making their double-handed debut in Caorle. 

“After so many long years of sailing we felt the desire to do something new and challenging to break free from our daily office routine,” Corrado said. "We're definitely stepping outside of our sailing 'comfort zone,' so we're diligently preparing the boat and ourselves with a humble approach, aiming to shift our sailing mindset. We've engaged in conversations with friends and fellow sailors who are experts in this field, seeking to absorb as much knowledge as possible during this limited preparation period.

LADY DAY (IY 998) - Annis Corrado & Alberto Lonza (Yacht Club Adriaco) © Andrea Carloni

“Despite the Lady Day team's accolades, this time we feel like genuine novices—or, at the very least, sincere underdogs,” he said. “We're hopeful for gentle, balmy weather for our debut in this discipline, but above all, we're steeling ourselves to confront the challenges that may arise. We're filled with excitement to embark on this new adventure!"

Having organized the La Duecento race for 30 years and being well-known for its great event management, the host CNSM is as excited as the sailors. 

“La Duecento occupies a special place in the history of our club. It’s the second appointment of the season for us and the number and quality of the entries in this 30 edition are a highly satisfactory. We are excited to host the ORC Doublehanded European Championship for the first time in Italy and we are working with ORC and the Darsena dell’Orologio, to prepare a program that will ensure all participants an exciting race on land and competitive at sea, in the best Adriatic offshore tradition.” said Gian Alberto Marcorin, President of Circolo Nautico Santa Margherita.

“To have this great race with its long traditions as our ORC Double-Handed European Championship this year is a great honor,” said Bruno Finzi, Chairman of ORC. “The fleet looks very interesting and very diverse, so it will be a good test not only of the sailors but our new WRS system to score them fairly and give everyone an equal chance to win.”
ORC DH European Champion titles will be awarded to the top three teams in three classes. Awards will also be given to the top three boats in each class's overall and all-amateur Corinthian Division. CNSM and ORC will agree upon final class definitions in the upcoming days. Additional prizes may be awarded to the top female or mixed crews. 

The event schedule for the ORC Double-Handed European Championship and La Duecento 2024 includes:

Wednesday to Thursday, 1 May - 2 May - Registration and Inspection

Thursday, 2 May - Opening Ceremony

Friday, 3 May - Start of La Duecento race

Sunday, 5 May - Finish of the race and award ceremony

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