Copa del Rey MAPFRE
The final battle for the 39th Copa del Rey MAPFRE was held in spectacular conditions that once again endorsed the reputation of the bay of Palma for sailing competition. Eight of the nine class titles were decided in the last leg of the championship, and Javier Banderas’ Soho Caixabank Theater won the V Centenario Trophy as the absolute winner. The Aifos 500 skippered by King Felipe VI finished fourth in the competitive BMW ORC 1 class.
The 39 Copa del Rey MAPFRE said goodbye with an exciting day both on land and in the water. In the morning at the Real Club Náutico de Palma, the sailor Joan Cardona received an emotional tribute for his Finn class bronze medal at the Olympic Games. Tokyo 2020, with the presence of the Royal Family and a large representation of members of the club’s school. On the race course, the title was resolved to a single card with a race contested in perfect condition.
The champions of the 39 Copa del Rey MAPFRE are the British Alegreen class IRC 1, the German Earlybirden ClubSwan 50, the Romanian Natalia in ClubSwan 42, the Italian G Spot in ClubSwan 36 and the Spanish Hydra in BMW ORC 1, Teatro Soho Caixabank in BMW ORC 2, El Carmen Elite Sails at BMW ORC 3, Dorsia Coviran Sailing Team at Mallorca Sotheby’s Women’s Cupy Let it Be at Herbalife Nutrition J70.
The 39 Copa del Rey MAPFRE was decided in the last section of the last heat of the last day. More emotion, impossible. Eight of the nine participating classes reached the final with math options for various teams, and they went out into the water knowing that everything would be decided today. The bay of Palma had reserved spectacular wind conditions for Sunday that were to test the skill of all the crews and the ability of the title candidates to manage their nerves. The Embat blew around 14 knots to say goodbye to an excellent week of racing. Once the program planned for all was completed, two titles were decided for one point, one team defended the crown and another won their second consecutive Cup competing in different classes.
The Alegre de Andrés was the only one who went out to the water as a virtual champion. The British TP52 dominated the week in IRC 1 class and completed his participation scoring his ninth partial victory of 11 possible. The 2017 champion led by ten points from the tie between Vadim Yakimenko’s Freccia Rossa (second) and Stephane Neve’s Paprec Recyclage (third).
In ClubSwan 50 class, fifth title for the Earlybird of Hendrik Brandis, champion of the Swan 45 class in 2011 and 2016, and of ClubSwan 50 in 2017 and 2018. The German boat managed to manage its leadership in the last round of the championship, and took advantage of the last stage of the week to take the absolute victory by the minimum over the current world champion of the category, Marcus Brenneke’s Hatari. Third ended the Bronenosec 50 of the young Russian patron Polina Lyubomiroba.
At ClubSwan 42, George’s and Natalia Brailoiu’s Natalia defended her 2019 title. The Romanian boat won the award for a magnificent week of racing in which her main rivals were Pedro Vaquer’s Spanish Nadir (second, six points behind) and Pez de Abril by José María Meseguer (third, at nine).
In the ClubSwan 36 premiere as a class, the G Spot resolved the final by confirming the dominance that it demonstrated throughout the week. Giangiacomo Serena’s boat won the last heat, saying goodbye to Palma with five partial victories out of 11 possible and a third as the worst result. He beat Lorenzo Mondo’s Farstar (second) by eight points and Riccardo Ferragamo’s Thirtysix (third) by 13.
The BMW ORC 1 title was settled by the bare minimum. Óscar Chavez’s Hydra, skippered by Olympic champion Fernando León, was able to capitalize on its reliability in the second half of the week. The new champion was enough a sixth in the final test to lead by a point to From Now on by Fernando Chain. This is the third consecutive title for the powerful DK46, which won the last two editions under the colors of Estrella Damm. Third finished the Rats on Fire by Rafael Carbonell, five-time champion in the waters of Palma. The Aifos 500, skippered once again by King Felipe VI, finished in a commendable fourth position in one of the most competitive classes of this edition.
In BMW ORC 2, the Swan 42 Teatro Soho Caixabank achieved the title at the same pace that it demonstrated during the rest of the week, and closes her participation with nine partial victories out of 11 possible. This is the fifth title for the tandem formed by the owner Javier Banderas and the skipper Daniel Cuevas, second in 2019 with this same boat. He is accompanied on the podium by the M8 of the Frances brothers and the Defcom Seguridad of Pedro Gil.
In BMW ORC 3, José Coello’s Sinergia 40 El Carmen Elite Sails achieved the milestone of chaining two consecutive titles in different classes. Champion 2019 of BMW ORC 3 completed his card with six points of advantage over Vincenzo de Blasio’s Scugnizza and seven over the Medilevel skippered by Nacho Campos.
At the Mallorca Sotheby’s Women’s Cup, the Dorsia Covirán skippered by Marta Garrido was proclaimed champion and the last of the 15 rounds of the championship was scored. The Valencian J80 closed its participation with five points of advantage over the Andalusian Cosentino Group – Les Roches de Eva González and 15 over the Balearic #compromisorcnp de María Bover.
The first title of the new Herbalife Nutrition J70 class corresponded to Marcelo Baltzer’s Let it Be, which went from low to high throughout the week and closed its debut with two points ahead of Massimo Rama’s Jeniale Eurosystem and six over the Patakín by Luis Albert Solana.
In addition to the nine class crowns, this week other trophies were being contested in the waters of Palma. The MAPFRE trophy for the winner in the handicap division, for which all the one-design classes scored, corresponded to the Italian G Spot; The MAPFRE trophy for the winner in the handicap division, for which the three BMW ORC and IRC 1 divisions scored, went to the Teatro Soho Caixabank from Malaga. As a reward for its extraordinary consistency, the boat built by Javier Banderas received the V Centenario trophy as absolute champion of the 39 Copa del Rey MAPFRE.
The bay of Palma, perfect
The 39 Copa del Rey MAPFRE will be remembered as the Cup of responsibility. After the absence in 2020 due to the pandemic, the regatta returned this year adapted to social limitations with all kinds of measures to guarantee the safety of all participants. 105 teams of 19 nationalities competed in six classes (five monotypes and four in compensated time) and the Bay of Palma fulfilled its reputation by presenting perfect conditions to complete the competition program of 11 rounds for all except the women’s class and the J70s, which they disputed the 15 planned.
The Copa del Rey MAPFRE will celebrate its 40th edition from July 30 to August 6, 2022.