The first Act of the 2017/2018 Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series got off to a cracking start, with winds up to 20-knots for the first two days, allowing the Race Committee to whet the appetites of the 80 sailors on the water with six races.
Consistency paid off for the Russians on Art Tube who handled the conditions to perfection, winning five of the six races in the J/70 class. Winners last season, the team led by Valeria Kovalenko set the pace from the start, taking the opportunity to widen their lead with each race. They finished a clear 12 points ahead of newcomers to this Series, Oman Sail 1.
Despite their best efforts and having at the helm Stevie Morrison, 5th in the 49er class at the London Olympics, the Omanis were not able to overtake. The Italian Sport Cube completed the season’s first podium.
Among the Monegasques, Cesare Gabasio (TinnJ70) came 4th. Congratulations also to a fine 10th place and first prize in the amateur category for Remi Piazza (Levante), a youngster from the YCM’s Sports Section. “It is important to encourage amateurs to sail and thereby attract more enthusiasts,” believes Michel Boussard, President of the Monaco J/70 Class Association, who is delighted to see that 20-plus J/70 teams are already signed up for the next meeting in November of the Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series 2017-2018.
In the Melges 20s, it may have been a different fleet, but the same country dominated, with the Russians on Alex Team winning the Act ahead of their compatriots on Leviathan. In 3rd was Gone Squatching helmed by Pietro Loro Piana, just ahead of Ludovico Fassitelli’s Junda, the only boat from Monaco in this class.
Come racing all winter
Organised once a month from October to March by the Yacht Club de Monaco, in collaboration with technical clothing supplier, SLAM, on the initiative of Valentin Zavadnikov, the Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series has proved a huge success since it launched in 2013. As evidenced by the presence of two Omani teams, these regattas for the J/70 and Melges 20 one-design classes continue to attract newcomers keen to prepare for the season ahead.
The next regatta is 10-12 November 2017.
Final rankings – J/70
1st Dennis Rozhkov – RUS (Art Tube) – 5 points
2nd Stevie Morrison – MON (Oman Sail 1) – 17 points
3rd Germano Scarpa – ITA (Sport Cube) – 19 points
Final rankings – Melges 20
1st Alexander Mikhaylik – RUS (Alex Team) – 11 points
2nd Maxim Titarenko – RUS (Leviathan) – 15 points
3rd Pietro Loro Piana – ITA – (Gone Squatching) – 15 points