Action commences at 2017 Giraglia Rolex Cup
11 june 2017
famous Vieux Port of Saint-Tropez, a location whose light has
inspired a multitude of artists, is today absorbed in nautical
activity, as hundreds of yachts and thousands of competitors engage
in a week of first class sailing at the 2017 Giraglia Rolex Cup.
This is the 65th uninterrupted year that the event has been held. Longevity which is testament to the Giraglia Rolex Cup’s enduring popularity and appeal. Distinctly Franco-Italian in heritage, today it is an international event of excellent repute. Nearly 250 yachts from some 25 countries are participating in the 2017 edition.
Partnered by Rolex since 1998, the Giraglia Rolex Cup is a veritable festival of sailing. While continually evolving, the event has always remained true to its deep rooted values, principally camaraderie, friendship and fair competition.
The sailing competition at the Giraglia Rolex Cup is divided into three separate stages. The first has already concluded with a significant proportion of the week’s fleet negotiating separate arrival races from Marseille and Sanremo. For the second year running the fastest yacht on the 76-nm French course was Gerard Logel’s IRC 52 Arobas 2. Her time just short of 18 hours. First finisher from the shorter 60-nm Italian race in 13 hours, 19 minutes was Pietro Moschini’s Cookson 50 Endlessgame.
The second stage commenced today, three days of intense inshore racing in the Gulf of Saint-Tropez, an area synonymous with the race having hosted the inshore series and start of the week’s main event, the 241-nm offshore race to Genoa, Italy, since 1998.
World renowned sailor Jochen Schümann has fond memories of the event and, like many sailors, enjoys returning each year. A multiple Giraglia Rolex Cup offshore race line honours winner from his time on Esimit Europa 2, Schümann was onboard when the 100-ft Maxi set the current race record of 14 hours, 56 minutes in 2012. This year he is sailing on Earlybird, one of three recently launched Swan 50s concentrating on the inshore series.
“The Giraglia Rolex Cup is one of the iconic events,” explains Schümann. “It’s magnificent to be moored with all of these beautiful boats in such a scenic place. As racing sailors we also love the competition element.” Earlybird is mainly comprised of the crew who won numerous Swan 45 World Championship titles.
The diverse nature of the fleet highlights the event’s appeal across a broad spectrum of yacht design and tradition, including the largest entrant in Leonardo Ferragamo’s Swan 115 Solleone, a group of highly competitive, all-out racing Maxi 72s, through to the 1946 build Jalina, a 44-ft Bermudan sloop and winner of the inaugural race in 1953.
The 2017 Giraglia Rolex Cup is organized by the Yacht Club Italiano, with the collaboration of the Yacht Club de France, Société Nautique de Saint Tropez, the Yacht Club Sanremo and the Cercle Nautique et Touristique du Lacydon and, with the partnership of Rolex. The inshore series concludes on Tuesday 13 June; the offshore race from Saint-Tropez to Genoa commences on Wednesday 14 June.