Giovanni Soldini and Maserati Multi 70 arrived in Fort Charlotte, Antigua, at 11.10 21” local time (15.10 UTC, 16.10 Italian time) on Wednesday February 26th, finishing the 12th edition of the RORC Caribbean 600 in third place, with an elapsed time of 1 day, 23 hours, 40 minutes and 21 seconds.
In first and second place are the two MOD 70s: Peter Cunningham’s PowerPlay crossed the finish line at 9.21 34” local time (13.21 UTC, 14.21 Italian time), with an elapsed time of 1 day, 21 hours, 51 minutes and 34 seconds, followed by the American Argo, skippered by Jason Carroll, at 9.25 40” local time (13.25 UTC, 14.25 Italian time), with an elapsed time of 1 day, 21 hours, 55 minutes and 40 seconds.
The race record, of 1 day, 6 hours and 49 minutes, set last year by Giovanni Soldini aboard Maserati Multi 70, remains undefeated.
Giovanni Soldini, after landing in Antigua, commented: “It was a really good race, unfortunately though with light winds, not more than 10 knots on average. We knew quite well that, with those conditions, it would be a difficult regatta for us, but I’m very happy about the crew, everyone was great on board, and about Maserati Multi 70 that is in excellent shape!”
Maserati Multi 70, as opposed to its direct rivals, sailed in flying mode. The Italian trimaran, with foils and T-shaped rudders, performs best with more than 14 knots of wind, otherwise the wetted surfaces, which are bigger than its competitors’, prevent it from reaching a higher speed.
Still competing are three more trimarans and two catamarans: first among them the 80’ Ultim’Emotion 2, followed by the 63’ Shockwave, the 78’ Allegra, the 53’ Fujin and by the 60’ Ineffable.
Aboard Maserati Multi 70, Giovanni Soldini sailed with 6 skilled sailors: the Italians Guido Broggi (mainsail trimmer), Nico Malingri and Matteo Soldini (both grinders and trimmers), the Spanish Carlos Hernandez Robayna (trimmer) and Oliver Herrera Perez (bowman), and the French Ronan Cointo (tactician).
Maserati Multi 70 and the other 7 multihulls set sail for the RORC Caribbean 600 from Fort Charlotte at 11.30 local time (15.30 UTC, 16.30 Italian time) on Monday February 24th. Soldini said: “We started well, leaving Antigua ahead of our competitors, but then they overtook us”. After catching up with its competitors near the mark off Barbuda, the Italian trimaran got stuck with no wind for an hour, while Argo and PowerPlay took off, carried by a light gust.
After reaching Nevis and Saint Kitts, Maserati Multi 70’s Team was able to catch up again with their competitors: “They sailed near the coast, where the wind was lighter, so we were able to get closer, but then with a light close-hauled wind they outdistanced us again”. After rounding Saint Martin, the Northernmost island of the race course, on a long beam reach leg towards Guadeloupe, PowerPlay and Argo found the wind sooner and increased their advantage over the Italian trimaran.
Sailing West of the island, the two MOD 70’s progress halted. “When we reached Guadeloupe, we decided to take a route very close to the coast that turned out to be effective: we stayed on the lead for a while. Unfortunately PowerPlay and Argo were able to sail around the Southern cape of the island immediately before us and gained 5/6 miles of advantage”.
The Italian Team decided to sail South of Marie-Galante, to reach the Easterly wind and sail faster towards Barbuda. The wind, however, arrived later than expected, allowing PowerPlay and Argo to reach the finish line first.
The RORC Caribbean 600, organized by the Royal Ocean Racing Club, attracted a total of 74 boats, from more than 20 different countries, divided in 8 classes.
Photo © Artur Daniel/RORC