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2022 Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup Concludes in Porto Cervo

Caroline Blatter

"This regatta is top of the top!"

As the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup draws to a close, we look back at a week of great sailing, in near perfect conditions, in Sardinia. 

Organised by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) in collaboration with the IMA (International Maxi Association) and the support of long-standing title sponsor Rolex, it was a record year with 50 entries!

The final coastal race on Sunday was cancelled, due to a strong and intensifying mistral wind
gusting 30+ knots.

Winning four races from the week’s five starts, overall J Class winner in Porto Cervo is Swedish flagged J-S1 Svea, co-owned and co-skippered by three passionate Swedish sailors, followed by J5 Ranger and JK7 Velsheda respectively.

Ranger win the Kohler Cup for the top performing J Class team over the three 2022 regattas ( Saint Barth's Bucket, the Superyacht Cup & Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup), an outstanding achievement for another new team, with a truly delighted new American owner, for who the famous J is his first race yacht!

One of Svea's Swedish owners enthused, "It has been an amazing week, amazing weather… you win as a team. We all work together and help each other. There is a great ambience on board. This venue, the competition, the classes - this regatta is the top of the top. And as Swedes we are proud to be very much custodians for this historical heritage."

The Supermaxi division was won by the ultimate pedigree sailing yacht, the beautiful Swan 115 Shaamanna

The largest Maxi division with 13 entries was won by Irvine Laidlaw's Highland Fling XI, the 25m Reighel Pugh designed Wally. 

In the Mini Maxi 1 class of pure racing yachts, Jim Swartz’s IRC72 Vesper claimed victory, with Capricorno, a 24m 1995 Reichel Pugh design winning the tight Mini Maxi 2 class by one point!

H2O, a Vallicelli 78 had four consecutive wins to triumph with a clear margin in the Mini Maxi 3 & 4 category.

This 32nd edition of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup hosted the race debut of the Mills 60F FlyingNikka – the first ever Mini Maxi foiler, racing in her own Mini Maxi 0 class! 

YCCS Commodore Michael Illbruck reflected on the week during the closing prize giving ceremony: “The Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup is a special event, unique I would say, which we are proud to organise.
Some of the best sailors in the world come to Porto Cervo to sail on J Class boats, designed in the 1930s, as well as maxi yachts at the cutting edge of naval technology. We will continue to raise the bar and follow a path of innovation and excellence. My thanks go to our partner Rolex, the Race Committee and the International Jury, the YCCS staff and all the owners and sailors who are the real protagonists of this event."

Alessandro Del Bono
, owner of the Mini Maxi 2 Capricorno shared: “I’m feeling a lot of emotions all at once, first of all because there are three generations of my family on board, from my father Rinaldo to my son, secondly because our boat has a great history (she won the Admiral’s Cup in 1995) and will be 27 years old this year, then I’m proud of the crew who showed their ability despite having an average age well above the others, and finally for the beauty of racing in Sardinia."

Images courtesy of Carlo Borlenghi 

News updates form YCCS/ Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup

Next for Porto Cervo is the Rolex Swan Cup 11-18th Sept 2022, with 90 yachts racing from the well admired Finnish shipyard! 


In Pictures