Historic 241 nm Rolex Giraglia Regatta set to begin this week

Written by Francesca Webster

The 68th edition of the historic Rolex Giraglia Regatta is set to take place this week, between the 16th - 19th June. The race, which has been organised by the Yacht Club Italiano, will begin in San Remo, racing overnight to Saint Tropez, on to Giraglia Rock at the tip of Corsica, before sprinting to Genoa for the final leg. In previous years the regatta has run from ports in France to Italy, but due to restrictions imposed by Covid-19, the 241 nautical mile course has been adapted to comply with local regulations. Rolex Giraglia Regatta 2021Photo: Rolex Giraglia Regatta 2021When compared to ocean races of a similar size, the Giraglia is a compact and intense regatta, with most competitors preparing for a full two days at sea from start to finish. With the event record set at 14 hours, 56 minutes and 16 seconds, in 2012 by 30-metre Esimit Europa 2, the fastest yachts will be racing to complete the regatta in less than 24 hours.Rolex Giraglia Regatta 2021Photo: Rolex Giraglia Regatta 2021Over 100 yachts are due to compete in this year's regatta, with yachts joining from more than 20 countries. There is an array of competitors, with professional maxi yacht crews racing alongside Corinthian sailors – all hoping to take the top spot of overall victory on handicap.Rolex Giraglia Regatta 2021Photo: Rolex Giraglia Regatta 2021YCI President Gerolamo Bianchi commented, “The heritage and spirit of this race has been passed through the generations. This has always lent the race its feeling of family and friendship.”Rolex Giraglia Regatta 2021Photo: Rolex Giraglia Regatta 2021Robert Scheidt, Olympian and former competitor described the Rolex Giraglia Regatta, commenting, “Enormous effort goes into being ready and for many crews just getting the boat to the start line can be as demanding as the race itself. On the water, the race presents numerous tactical and navigational conundrums, accentuated by the visible presence of your nearest rivals.”Rolex Giraglia Regatta 2021Photo: Rolex Giraglia Regatta 2021The event follows the recent success of the Loro Piana Regatta in Sardinia, which saw sailors returning to their favourite activity after a long hiatus due to the global pandemic.

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