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J/122E cruises Rolex Giraglia Race!

by J/Boats 26 Jun 00:15 PDT

The Rolex Giraglia is truly a classic event. As legend has it, the race was created on an evening in December 1952 when Beppe Croce, President of Yacht Club Italiano, René Levainville, President of Yacht Club de France, and Franco Gavagnin were enjoying a long dinner in a Parisian bistro. They envisioned the race from Saint-Tropez to Genoa as a challenge between yachts that could also be seen as a challenge between Italy and France that would favor relations after the Second World War.

The Rolex Giraglia is one of the most cherished events in the sailing calendar, presenting a rigorous test of skill on stunning Mediterranean waters. Competition is always intense but imbued with an overriding sense of camaraderie.

The 2022 edition of the famous 206.0nm ROLEX Giraglia Race, hosted by Yacht Club Italiano and the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez, took place on the weekend of June 15th. A fleet of 141 offshore teams in ORC and IRC handicap divisions started off the famous seaside resort of St. Tropez, France to then head straight offshore across the Mediterranean to the famous Giraglia Rock, leaving it to port, and finishing just off the harbor in Genoa, Italy.

The race attracts many of the leading offshore sailing teams on the Mediterranean as it starts with a week of feasts and festivals at the famous watering hole of Saint Tropez. After three days of fun and entertainment, and "inshore racing" around the cans, the teams then take off and hope for the best that the Med's often capricious weather doesn't serve them up a classic Mistral blowing "dogs off chains" at 50+ knots!

Thankfully, this year's event served up benign weather in the light to medium wind ranges. "From the latest weather models," commented navigator Ambrogio Beccaria, "we expect to complete the first leg to Formigue taking advantage of the thermal breezes, which could even reach 15 knots. Once we round the mark and move away from the land, we will have to figure out the best options for the long leg to the Giraglia. We will certainly have light air and the current models show us rounding the rock at 5 a.m. on 17 June. From there on we should - and I stress 'should' - have a stronger breeze coming in from the east that will accompany us to Genoa.

ORC Division

In the end, it was the Chilean team on the J/122E ANITA, led by skipper/owner Nicolas Ibanez-Scott from Lago Panguipulli, Chile that not only won ORC 1 Class honors but also won ORC Overall honors by over 18 minutes on corrected time! Congratulations to Nic's Chilean crew, also podium winners in last year's ROLEX Middle Sea Race!

IRC Division

Despite having to fight many of the Med's famous light-air speedsters with towering rigs, Peter Gustafsson's Swedish team on the J/111 BLUR managed to take 7th in IRC 1 Division and 9th IRC Overall.

Winning IRC 2 Division was the Anserini/ Petti team on the J/109 CHESTRESS; also taking an amazing 11th overall. Taking 5th was Holger Techen's J/92 BAGATELLE and in 6th was Antoine Illes' J/99 ALMOGAVER.

Combined Inshore + Offshore ORC Division

In the ORC 2 Division, Marcello de Gaspari's J/109 FREMITO d'ARJA sailed all three inshore races in Saint Tropez as well as the Rolex Giraglia to have a combined score of 17 points to earn the bronze medal.

San Remo to Saint Tropez Race

The "feeder race" from San Remo, Italy down the spectacular coastline of the Italian and French Riviera to Saint Tropez, France was a moderate reaching race for most of the 60.0nm. Winning IRC 2 Class and IRC Overall was Leonardo Petti's J/109 CHESTRESS. Then, winning IRC 1 Class and taking 3rd IRC Overall was Peter Gustafsson's Swedish crew on the J/111 BLUR.

Follow Rolex Giraglia Race on Facebook here. For more Rolex Giraglia Race sailing information, click here.

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