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8 Metre World Championship at Yacht Club Italiano - Overall

by Yacht Club Italiano 2 Sep 2023 10:38 PDT 28 August - 2 September 2023
8 Metre World Championship at Yacht Club Italiano, final day © jrtphoto / IEMA / YCI

On the final day of the 8 Metre World Championship, with the boats waiting in the harbor for the wind to pick up, the rankings from yesterday were confirmed.

The Swiss crew of Yquem II, skippered by Jean Fabre and representing the Société Nautique de Geneve, emerged as the winners of the 2023 edition of the Class World Championship. The Swiss demonstrated great skill and showcased their familiarity with this class, as they are true veterans. Jean Fabre had previously won the first world championship with the earlier Yquem in 1998 and then repeated his success in 2015, 2019, and in 2022 with the second boat in the series.

The second place went to the Austrian crew of Conquistador, owned by the President of the International 8 Metre Class, Werner Deuring, and the third place was secured by the Australian team on Mirabelle, owned by Peter Harburg, with an exceptional crew of Australians led by Mark Bradford, who is not only the skipper of Mirabelle but also of the impressive 100' Black Jack.

Yquem II, in addition to the world title, also claimed the Corinthian Trophy and the Coppa d'Italia, an ancient trophy that originated in 1908 at the Yacht Club Italiano and has since been awarded to racing boats in the 8 Metre S.I. class.

"I am very happy with this achievement," said Jean Fabre, the owner of Yquem II. "It is the result of meticulous preparation. After all, we are all Swiss on board, and we have been sailing together for many years. I have been sailing 8 Metres for over thirty years, and with my crew, we have decades of experience that allows us to know our boat very well. It is a very fast boat and relatively straightforward to set up, especially compared to my first Yquem, which was unbeatable in light airs and with which I won the first world title in 1998 but was very complicated to set up."

"It was a tremendous thrill to see these beautiful yachts return to the waters of Genoa," said Gerolamo Bianchi, the President of the Yacht Club Italiano, at the end of the races. "We welcomed the crews in very challenging weather conditions that kept us ashore for the first two days, but we made up for it in the following days by managing to stick to the schedule of two daily races, always with good wind. Hats off to these crews who provided us with a truly rare spectacle and demonstrated great sportsmanship and seamanship."

At 7:30 PM, the Club held the closing ceremony of the World Championship, followed by the prize-giving ceremony that saw the crews from various categories, based on the year of construction (the oldest in Genoa dating back to 1910, while the newest is from 2013), take the podium.

The ceremony concluded with a farewell to the 2024 World Championship in Clyde, Scotland, and a gala dinner for owners and crews in the race village of the Yacht Club Italiano set up for the occasion.

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