Please select your home edition
Edition
Marine Resources 2022 Salary Survey

Home waters victory for Italy at Hempel Mixed Two Person Offshore World Championship

by Andy Rice / World Sailing 25 Sep 2021 22:31 PDT 26 September 2021
Italian team Claudia Rossi & Pietro D'Alì win the 2021 Hempel Mixed Two Person Offshore World Championship © World Sailing

Italian team Claudia Rossi & Pietro D'Alì have been crowned winners of the 2021 Hempel Mixed Two Person Offshore World Championship after a hard-fought final leg to Venice.

When the final leg started at lunchtime on Friday, Rossi and D'Ali were slow out of the starting blocks of the 100-mile overnight race from Marina di Ravenna, but the Italian duo kicked their Figaro 3 keelboat, ITA1 Team ENIT, into gear and took the lead by the halfway stage.

The rising sun was struggling to break through the Venetian morning mist, but emerging from the gloom in the lead was ITA1 Team ENIT, crossing the line first and taking the championship title. Four minutes later Team ESP from Spain crossed in second place, followed by Team Belgium who took third place by just four seconds from winners of the previous leg, ITA2 Marina Militare.

As the boats arrived into the breathtaking military basin in the heart of Venice, the Arsenale di Venezia, there were few smiling faces. The final approach to Venice involved navigating around a myriad of restricted zones due to oil platforms and other sea furniture, and some teams brought protests against others to seek clarification on whether others had contravened the restrictions. There was not yet a clear winner.

After a few hours of intense but friendly deliberation with the international jury, several teams received penalty points for navigational errors. For Rossi and D'Ali the champagne remained on ice until protests had been concluded. Eventually, however, the Italians were able to pop the cork, a release of emotion as they were finally able to celebrate becoming the first ever World Champions of Mixed Two Person Offshore competition.

Rossi shared her feelings after hearing the result. "It's an amazing feeling, it's like a dream that has come true. We fought until the end but then we had some protests to discuss, so it was not really easy. But now we can just feel good and have a party together because we did a great race and great teamwork together."

Aged 29, Rossi is exactly half the age of Pietro D'Ali, one of Italy's most experienced and respected offshore competitors. D'Ali commented: "To come back to offshore racing in this event, after the Solitaire du Figaro and Transat racing, it's a pleasure to be sailing again. I hope this format keeps going in the future. This is a perfect format for the Olympics."

Finishing runner-up was the other Italian team, ITA2 Marina Militare sailed by Giovanna Valsecchi & Andrea Pendibene. Two Italian teams winning on home waters doesn't tell the story of how close this championship was between the 10 teams representing eight nations. Team Belgium (Sophia Faguet & Jonas Gerckens) ran the winners very close for overall victory but had to settle for third overall.

Coming in fourth place and punching above their lack of offshore experience was Team South Africa, crewed by Michaela Robinson (age 21) and Siyanda Vato (age 28). "We've spent 11 years racing against each other," said Vato, "but this was the first time we've raced together. We worked together really well as a team, we've achieved much more than we could have dreamed of, lots of positives!"

Two of Michaela's siblings, Brennan and Catherine, flew out from the UK early in the morning to spring a family surprise on their younger sister before she flies back to South Africa. The same for Lennea Floser on Team Sweden, who was overjoyed to see a number of her family waiting on the dock in Venice to welcome her ashore. Her younger sister Josefin was bursting with pride for Lennea. "So amazing. I'm so proud of her. She's always accomplishing new goals, and she's always moving forward, never backward. It's very impressive what she has done."

This evening, in front of the Italy's secretary of state for defence, the prize-giving took place in the Arsenale di Venezia, the shining conclusion to a brand new world championship format.

For more information visit www.nastrorosatour.it.

Related Articles

Paralympians take flight with Swiss SailGP Team
All experienced foiling for the first time as they sailed onboard the F50 on Plymouth's Sound Three Paralympic athletes were invited to the GB SailGP Grand Prix in Plymouth last weekend to join the Switzerland SailGP Team and their Race for the Future partner, Stiftelsen VI, to experience sailing onboard the speediest raceboats in the sport. Posted on 4 Aug
Nominations open for Sustainability Award
Submissions for World Sailing 11th Hour Racing are due 2 September Nominations are now open for this year's World Sailing 11th Hour Racing Sustainability Award, the fifth edition of the highest recognition of success in marine sustainability. Posted on 28 Jul
Governance Reform proposals unanimously backed
In the World Sailing Extraordinary General Meeting At an Extraordinary General Meeting held virtually on 18 July, representatives of Member National Authorities voted unanimously that the Board should draft the detailed amendments to give effect to proposed changes to the Constitution tabled by the Board. Posted on 20 Jul
World Sailing Extraordinary General Meeting
To vote on Governance Reform proposals World Sailing will hold an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) on 18 July 2022 to discuss and vote on proposals for Governance Reform. The meeting will be held virtually and is open to representatives of all Member National Authorities (MNAs). Posted on 15 Jul
World Sailing reaches 'pivotal moment'
With LA28 Paralympic Games bid World Sailing, the world governing body for the sport, has reached a major milestone in its Paralympic quest by submitting the official application for inclusion in the Los Angeles 2028 Paralympic Games. Posted on 5 Jul
Para Kiteboarding special feature
World Sailing CEO declares "big future" for Para Kiteboarding World Sailing's 1st ever Para Kiteboarding Development Programme concluded after 4 days of action on Lake Garda, where 11 coaches & athletes from 7 countries were put through their paces as part of World Sailing's vision to increase growth Posted on 29 Jun
Massimo Dighe heads to IPC
As Deputy Director of World Para Sports Massimo Dighe will join the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) as Deputy Director of World Para Sports on 1 July 2022. Posted on 23 Jun
World Sailing spotlights revitalisation message
Marking United Nations World Oceans Day today World Sailing is marking United Nations World Oceans Day on 8 June by issuing a rallying call to the global sailing community to increase efforts to protect the natural environment and revitalise the oceans. Posted on 8 Jun
Hempel World Cup Series at Allianz Regatta overall
Foiling gold for Peru, France and The Netherlands The Hempel World Cup Series at Allianz Regatta concluded with light winds in Lelystad - enough for kiting but not quite for iQFOiL. Lammerts feels the heat from Israel but wins Formula Kite Women. Posted on 5 Jun
Hempel World Cup Series at Allianz Regatta day 5
Five Gold Medals awarded in Almere The five Olympic boat classes contested their medal races, the 10-boat, double-points decider that often shakes up the podium on the final day of competition. Posted on 4 Jun
SOUTHERN-SPARS-MISSY-FURLING-BOOMS-728-X-90 BottomC-Tech 2021 (Spars-QFX Racer) 728x90 BOTTOMJ Composites 2022 - J45 FOOTER