The ClubSwan 50 fleet, Rolex Swan Cup 2022. Photo credit: Rolex/Carlo Borlenghi
Yacht Club Costa Smeralda: Rolex Swan Cup gets serious
The second day of the Rolex Swan Cup kicked off on schedule at 12 midday for boats in both Division 1, on a coastal course, and Division 2, who completed two windward-leeward races. Tacticians and strategists in particular were put to the test, as they strived to get to grips with a south-easterly wind blowing at anywhere from 8 to 20 knots in different areas of the course.
The Rolex Swan Cup is a biennial regatta organised by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) in collaboration with the Nautor Swan shipyard and with the support of title sponsor Rolex. Now in its 21st edition, the event will conclude on Sunday 18th September.
Given the south-easterly wind, the Race Committee set a course of approximately 29 miles for Division 1, taking the Swan Maxi and Mini Maxi classes up the eastern coast of the islands of Caprera and La Maddalena, and on to the lighthouse at Barrettinelli di Fuori, before turning for the finish, which had been brought forward to Capo Ferro. A similar route, but covering approximately 25 miles, was set for the Classic S&S and Grand Prix groups, while their finish line was moved up to the Monaci islands.
The fleet raced in an average wind of about 15 knots, which fell away sharply in the northernmost portion of the course. The windward-leeward course for Division 2, set up just off Porto Cervo, had a more consistent breeze, but challenging choppy seas.
The Swan 80 Plis-Play repeated yesterday's winning performance in the Maxi Class, strengthening her position at the top of the group. Second and third place of the day respectively went to the Swan 100 Onyx, with Gavin Brady on tactics, and the Swan 90 Freya, with tactician Mike Toppa. In the overall classification, Plis-Play sits in the top spot ahead of Freya and Onyx. David Madrazo, crew boss on Plis-Play: "We're really pleased to have managed to recover from a poor start, the whole crew and in particular the tactician Laureano Wizner did a great job. So good that we overtook most of the fleet on the last leg towards the finish. The boat sails perfectly and we're happy about that too."
Among the Swan Mini Maxis, the top three positions continue to be held exclusively by Swan 601s. Flow, Arobas and Les Amis finished today in that order and maintain the same positions in the overall classification as well.
In the Class reserved for the Classic Sparkman & Stephens Swans, winner of the day was the Swan 36 Josian, the smallest boat present in Porto Cervo, followed by Mascalzone Latino XXXIII and Shirlaf. In the overall standings Mascalzone Latino XXXIII continues to lead, just one point ahead of Josian and two ahead of Shirlaf.
In the Grand Prix class the British Swan 58 OM II excelled in her first participation in the Rolex Swan Cup. She was followed by the Spanish Swan 56 Clem Primero, and the German Swan 53 Crilia, which holds onto first place in the overall standings by one point over OM II. The Swan 48 Anya sits in third place overall, after a fifth-place finish today.
The two windward-leeward races saw the ClubSwan 50 Stella Maris, owned by August Schram, earn the best results of the day (3-1) ahead of Tango, owned by YCCS member Christian Kilger (1-6). In the provisional overall classification Balthasar, owned by Louis Balcaen, holds onto the lead one point ahead of Tango and three ahead of Stella Maris. August Schram, owner of Stella Maris: "It was beautiful sailing, difficult conditions but with Robert Scheidt as tactician we have somebody on board who is willing to make bold decisions, and so we did, hanging onto the left side even though the right looked a bit better, and it paid very well. Good, beautiful racing, tough racing as well, we were very close to Cuordileone and very close to Hatari."
In the Clubswan 36 group G Spot, owned by Giangiacomo Serena Di Lapigio, continues to shine, racking up a first and a second place today, and consolidating their lead over Farstar, owned by Lorenzo Mondo (2-6), and Mamao owned by Haakon Lorentzen, who claimed a seventh place and a win in the second race of the day.
Among the Clubswan 42s, the winner of the day with a third and a first was Nadir, owned by Pedro Vaquer Comas. Selene Alifax, owed by Massimo De Campo (4-2) remains at the head of the overall ranking however, followed by Nadir and Pez de Abril, owned by Jose Maria Meseguer (1-6). Claudio Terrieri's Blue Sky dominated in the Swan 45 class today, and with two wins jumps to the top of the overall classification.
The day concluded with the after-race refreshment in Piazza Azzurra and the daily prize giving presented by Quantum Sails.
Tomorrow a long coastal race is scheduled for all classes, with the first warning signal set to sound at 12 midday.