- Palermo-Montecarlo, the longest night of arrivals
- The English Joy leads the IRC classification for the Angelo Randazzo Trophy
- The nocturnal arrival of Elo II of the Italian Yacht Club with Mauro Pelaschier
- The point on the boats still sailing: maximum arrival time Sunday 27 at 12:00
Fifth and panultimate day of the Palermo-Montecarlo race 2023, the great offshore regatta at the end of August increasingly reveals its image, and prepares the balance of the 18th edition. As always, it is a Palermo-Montecarlo with a thousand faces. It begins with the great maxi protagonists, between record attempts and victories in real time. Then it’s the turn of medium-sized boats, performing and prepared for this type of offshore racing, with super crews on board, vying for podiums in the classifications on corrected time. In the middle are the Class40, ocean boats with their own Mediterranean circuit, the crews competing in pairs (Classification Per 2). Finally it’s up to the fleet of smaller boats, with non-professional sailors who give life to the show of resistance, they don’t give up and in the end they are the ones who sail the most, even spending four nights at sea.
The night leading up to Saturday 26 August was a sleepless night, along the docks of the Yacht Club de Monaco, due to the many arrivals that followed one another. Eleven boats, driven by a good wind from the South-West of 12-13 knots on the Ligurian Sea, arrived in front of the Principality of Monaco, where the wind dropped slowing down the cutting of the line. Opening the arrivals was Sisi, the Austrian VO65 skippered by Gerwin Jansen, fifth overall. Around midnight it was the turn of Made in Midi by the legendary French navigator Kito de Pavant (four participations in the Vendée Globe), first of the Class40.
This was followed by a sprint between five boats, which crossed the line in half an hour: Artie Jeep of the Maltese Lee Satariano, crossed at 00:12, followed 7 minutes later by a sprint between the French: Chenapan 4, Ker 40 of Gilles Caminade and Tonnerre de Glen, Diminique Tian’s Ker 46, both in the running for the IRC classification and therefore attentive to every second to gain. Another 4 minutes later came Otra Vez, ICE 52 designed by Umberto Felci of the Maltese Aaron Gat Floridia, and 20 minutes later it was the turn of Afazik Impulse, Neo 430 of the French Yves Grosjean, who preceded by just 5 minutes the second Class40, ACI40 of the Croatian Ivica Kostelic, last of the band around midnight.
It is certainly not over, because at 01:09, Elo II, the proto of the Italian Yacht Club with Mauro Pelaschier and a team of young but highly trained sailors from dinghies crosses the finish line. Theirs was a beautiful race, with an outdated hull, they finished ahead of more modern and larger boats. And also for this reason, ELO II was for a long time leading the provisional classification of the ORC 1 group, overtaken in extremis by another boat from the same Italian Yacht Club, Mario Rosso’s Comet 38 Scricca, one of the boats that arrived in the late morning.
The long Monegasque night continued with other arrivals: shortly after 02:00 Team 42 arrived, Daniel Segalowicz’s Solaris 55, author of another great regatta. Then at 04, almost at dawn, another sprint: Vaquita, the dated Class40 of Alessio Bernabò with Andrea Pendibene, and Comanche Sagola Lauria, the Farr 40 with Beppe Fornich at the helm, practically cross the line together. Another 4 minutes and it was Alemaro’s turn, the German Neo 400 Plus. It’s 04:08, the intense night of arrivals ends. And the rankings, mind you, are largely provisional.
In the time slot between 12:50 and 13:15, four other boats arrive at the finish line, favored by a refreshment in the wind: Pistrice, Carlo Levantino’s Vismara 40, then Spitfire, J121 of the Dutch Federik De Visser, the aforementioned Scricca by Mario Rosso, and finally Starfly, the Rimar by Alessandro Alaimo with the colors of the Italian Naval League of Palermo. Next it will be the turn of the first in the “Per 2” classification (in doubles), Colombre JPK 1080 of the Venetian Massimo Juris paired with the ex Mini Transat Andrea Iacopini.
In the afternoon some arrivals that upset the IRC and ORC rankings that seemed stable. At 15:27, the Joy line crosses the JPK 1010 of the English owner Dave Butters of Parkeston YC in Poole. Twist: compensated time allows the British crew to overtake Kuka 3 at the top of the IRC rankings. About an hour later it was the turn of the French J99 Poisson Garou owned by Frederico Croba, skippered by Jonathan Heusse. They too pass Kuka, but not Joy who remains in command.
Other arrivals worth mentioning are the Class950 Pegasus with the couple Francesco Conforto and Ruggero Bellucci, with a time of 99 hours and 59 minutes, half an hour before Muttley, the Figaro 3 of another couple, Luca Bettiati and Federico Sazzini, who set a time of more than 100 hours of racing, like the others who arrived: Ultravox, Maupiti, Melagodo.
Eight boats still remain in the race and sailing, in the race against time to finish the regatta within the maximum time of Sunday 27 at 12:00. The first across the finish line should be Grace, Fabrizio Ferrera’s small Oceanis 31 of the Mediterranean Yacht Club, which could result first in the ORC 2 group. Then Imagin’Act Socomec, Marco Guerra’s Class40, then Renoir, the Brand Soleil 40, and Loli Fast, Sun Fast 3600 by the couple Davide Paioletti and Guido Trasimeni. Moogli, Carolin Petit’s Dufour 36 with an all-female crew, is also racing with time and is the only boat to have chosen to leave Corsica on the left, without passing through the Bocche di Bonifacio.
With the docks of Port Hercule in front of the Yacht Club de Monaco increasingly crowded, the multi-faceted Palermo-Montecarlo is preparing to experience the final day of Palermo-Montecarlo 2023, Sunday 27 August: the maximum arrival time will expire at 12:00 and the regatta will be declared concluded, with the relative official classifications. Then at 18:00 the awards ceremony, on the terraces of the Yacht Club de Monaco, to which the presidents of the organizing clubs, authorities and partners are expected.
The direct link to the tracking on the official website to follow the regatta: https://cf.yb.tl/pm2023
ORGANIZERS, CIRCUITS AND PARTNERS – The Palermo-Montecarlo has been organized for 18 years by the Circolo della Vela Sicilia with the collaboration of the Yacht Club de Monaco and the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda and under the aegis of the Italian Sailing Federation, UVAI (Unione Vela d’Altura Italiana) and the IMA (International Maxi Association).
Included in the “long” regatta circuit of the FIV Italian Offshore Sailing Championship, among those with the highest coefficient for the purposes of scoring for the final classification, the 500 miles of the Palermo-Montecarlo are also part of the following prestigious circuits: the IMA Mediterranean Maxi Offshore Challenge; the Mediterranean Offshore Trophy; the Mediterranean Trophy for the Class40; and the 2023 edition of the Championnat et Trophées Inshore et Offshore Méditerranée en Équipages-IRC.
The event is also directly promoted by the Sicilian Region Department of Tourism, Sport and Entertainment, with the participation of the Metropolitan City of Palermo and the support of the Sicily Foundation. Sponsor partners are Tasca d’Almerita and Porsche, Centro Porsche Palermo.