PalmaVela regatta was officially opened today at host club, the Real Club Náutico de Palma. The race fleet will muster from Friday and race over three days with 80 crews from 22 countries racing across 11 classes
The terrace of the Real Club Náutico de Palma (RCNP) today hosted the official presentation of the 17th edition of PalmaVela, a Mediterranean showcase event which normally opens the season, but this time will serve as a final showdown on the bay of Palma in 2021, this edition being postponed for more than a year due to the health situation.
There will be three days of racing starting tomorrow Friday, October 29th, with a fleet of more than 80 crews from 22 countries divided into eleven classes: ORC 0, ORC 1-2, ORC 3, ORC 4-5, ORC A2 (double handed), Box Rule (TP52s), J80, Dragon, Flying Fifteen, Vintage and Spirit of Tradition. It is being used as a vital warm up event regatta by ten TP52s as they prepare for next week’s Rolex TP52 World Championships which are being hosted by the club, running from Tuesday to Saturday.
The official launch today was attended by Emerico Fuster, president of the RCNP; Manuel Fraga, sports director of the Balearic Yacht Club; Carles Gonyalons, director general de Deportes del Govern; Rafael Navarro, manager of the Municipal Sports Institute; Dámaso Berenguer, commander of the Naval Sector of the Balearic Islands; Jorge Forteza, RCNP’s commodore; Alejandra Vanoli, Mallorca Sotheby´s general director and Christoph Mann, the artist whose emotive paintings are selected as prizes for this year’s PalmaVela winners.
Fuster welcomed authorities, media and participants.
He said: “We are presenting an exceptional PalmaVela as the dates fall so late in the year. And so we must thank the commitment of the owners and crews of the 80 boats that from tomorrow and until Sunday will compete on the Bay of Palma, which are added to several of those that have already competed in the first edition of La Larga, the offshore race with which underlined our desire to renew our commitment to offshore racing.”
“PalmaVela was born from the spirit of responding to our sailors desires and wants, and the many different diverse levels of approaching and taking part in sailing. We still adhere to that philosophy and I am convinced that all the participants will enjoy great sailing and we welcome them again in just seven months we will celebrate the next edition of PalmaVela, back to its usual dates,” the president of the RCNP concluded.
11 classes and 80 teams from more than 20 countries
It is, without a doubt, one of the most important regattas in the Mediterranean and in which professional teams and amateur crews meet.
11 classes will take part in this edition. One of the most competitive ones will be Box Rule, where the powerful fleet of TP52 will compete. With a total of 10 boats registered, the 17th PalmaVela will be the prelude to the Rolex TP52 Worlds that will be held in November in these same waters. A maximum of six W/L races are scheduled for the TP52s. The race fleet includes a whole host of Olympic, America’s Cup and Round the World campaigners included Giles Scott (GBR), Paul Goodison (GBR), Tom Slingsby (AUS), Terry Hutchinson (USA), Vasco Vascotto (ITA), Santiago Lange (ARG), Jordi Calafat (ESP), John Kostecki (USA), Juan Vila (ESP), Jules Salter (GBR).
“Palma Vela is a great opportunity to race against other boats prior to next week’s world championship. The weather at the end of October can be challenging with thunder storms coming through and low pressure coming and making some crazy winds but we accept that and it is the same for everyone.” Comments Bruno Zirilli (ITA) navigator on the TP52 Bronenosec.
In addition to Box Rule, there will be three more one-design classes: J80, Flying Fifteen and Dragon. Their racing programme includes a maximum of nine W/L races. The Dragon class will race for the Spanish Cup.
Regarding the ORC fleet, there will be 38 boats at the starting line divided into five classes: ORC 0, ORC 1-2, ORC 3, ORC 4-5 and ORC A2. “Aifos 500”, “Pelotari Project” and “Leaps & Bounds 2” in the division 0; “Hydra” and “Nadir” in 1-2 or “L´Immens – Laplaza Assesors” and “Vell Mari” in class 3 are some of the teams that aim to be among the top positions in the rankings.
The Race Committee expects to complete a total of five races for the ORCs, except for the A2 fleet (double handed), with a maximum of three coastal races in its racing program.
The classic sailing will once again have its own place in the Majorcan event with seven boats divided into the classes Spirit of Tradition and Vintage. “So Fong”, one of the most competitive boat in the fleet, “Marigan” from 1898 and “Legolas” will be at the start line for the three coastal races expected over the weekend.
Fusion of art and sport at the 17th PalmaVela
It was in 2013 when PalmaVela released its first collection of awards for the winners of the regatta. The aim was to give a special value to the trophies that are awarded each edition and to give visibility to the work of artists linked to the sea and the sport of sailing.
Christoph Mann is the renowned artist whose works are selected for the prize collection for this 17th edition of the regatta. “As a club member it was a pleasure for me to contribute with these pieces to the event. They show maritime motives, in the culinary side, and I hope the people and winners will like them. It is up to the public to decide which one is the favourite one but most of my painting are my favorites (laughs), ”Mann said.
Racing starts tomorrow Friday at 13h00 local time.