Giovanni Soldini and Maserati Multi 70 set off for the 11th edition of the RORC Caribbean 600 today at 14.00 local time (18.00 UTC and 19.00 Italian time). The race organized by the Royal Ocean Racing Club and has a 600-mile course around 11 islands in the Lesser Antilles, in the Caribbean.
Under a sunny sky, with 25 knots of wind from South-East and waves between 2 and 3 meters, Maserati Multi 70 crossed the starting line after her direct rival Argo, skippered by Jason Carroll, but after a few minutes the Italian trimaran caught up with Argo and overtook her.
In this edition of the RORC Caribbean 600, Maserati Multi 70, which is in flying mode, will compete against American MOD 70 Argo in the new class Multi/MOD 70. The Royal Ocean Racing Club exceptionally created this class for the two trimarans, following the Italian Team’s decision to agree to the American Team’s request to postpone the start for a few hours, allowing them to finish the repair work after they capsized during a training regatta on Friday.
A few moments before setting sail, skipper Giovanni Soldini commented: “The weather conditions are favourable, there will be a stable and strong Trade Wind, which should allow us to beat the record. The delayed start is no help to us, but our main goal is to have a great race against Argo and we are happy they were able to make it to the starting line. Aboard Argo is a very strong Team, with Brian Thompson, who brings with him all his experience aboard Phaedo3, and François Gabart, one of the strongest sailors of the moment: I’m sure it’s going to be a great challenge”.
Maserati Multi 70’s goal, as well as winning against her direct rival, is to beat the record set by American Phaedo3 in 2016: 1 day, 7 hours, 59 minutes and 4 seconds.
Maserati Multi 70 and the other yachts that have entered the regatta are heading North up to Saint Martin, taking in Barbuda, Nevis, Saba and Saint Barth, before heading South towards Guadeloupe. After rounding the island, the fleet will head back North, touching the last mark off Barbuda before sailing back to Antigua towards the finish line. Of the 75 boats that sailed from Antigua, American Maxi 72 Bella Mente retired from the race and has returned to port.
Photo ©Ted Martin