The Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup, organized by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda in collaboration with partner Rolex, has returned for its 22nd edition in Porto Cervo. The esteemed regatta will take place from 5th to 10th September with 46 of the world's largest and most competitive maxi racing yachts expected to do battle on the waters off Sardinia's Costa Smeralda.
Sixteen of the participating yachts will compete in the Mini Maxi Rolex World Championship 2011 which takes place within the traditional Maxi event.
The fleet of yachts, which range from 18 to 45 metres in length, will be divided into various divisions according to their size and technical characteristics and will race off Porto Cervo for five days, with no lay day scheduled this year. The Mini Maxi fleet (yachts from 18.29 to 24.08 metres) includes many strong candidates for the title of World Champion including Niklas Zennström's Rán 2, winner of the title in 2010 and fresh from overall victory in the Rolex Fastnet Race.
The remaining 30 maxi yachts racing in the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup, which have an average length of approximately 30 metres, cover a vast spectrum of designs, models and technological solutions. From new launches such as the prototype for the new F-Class one-design Firefly, the Comet 100 Shadow and the classic Bermudian sloop Annagine - all dated 2011 - to veteran competitors such as the 38-metre ketch Hetairos, launched in 1993 and winner of the Supermaxi division in 2010.
Following last year's victory in the Racing and Racing/Cruising division, Esimit Europa 2 owned by Igor Simcic will be looking to repeat their impressive debut performance. The 30 metre Reichel-Pugh sloop, which boasts a crew of top European sailors, recently took line honours in the 2011 Giraglia Rolex Cup.
As always a rich social programme has been organized for owners and crews including a welcome cocktail at the YCCS Clubhouse, a Rolex Gala Dinner and Crew Party and the closing prize giving on the Yacht Club's Piazza Azzurra. Yacht Club Costa Smeralda website