The Giraglia Rolex Cup 2000 is taking shape and the Notice of Race will become available shortly. The race's final form will, of course, depend on the weather.
The Giraglia Rolex Cup 2000 is taking shape and the Notice of Race will become available shortly. The race’s final form will, of course, depend on the weather. In 1998, the fourteen year old course record was smashed by the 18.28 metre Riviera di Rimini, sailing in a Mistral wind. The Mistral stayed away in 1999, and in light air only five boats finished the course within the time limit – anything can happen on the Giraglia race. But we can be sure that there will be plenty of contenders looking to break Riviera di Rimini’s record, which stands at 24 hours, 21 minutes and 46 seconds, not least of which will be Riviera di Rimini herself.
There were almost a hundred entries in last year’s event, which was almost double the number in the previous year. With the Giraglia Rolex Cup 2000 expected to be even bigger, it is hoped to break the participation record, set in 1974, when 132 yachts raced.
Dreamed up in a Paris bistro in 1954 by Beppe Croce and Rene Levainville, this year’s event is the third consecutive time that the Giraglia Rolex Cup, sponsored by Rolex and hosted by the town of Saint-Tropez, will start in Saint-Tropez. Beginning on 16th June with registration, there follows three days of inshore racing in the gorgeous Gulf of Saint-Tropez. The offshore race, the Giraglia itself, begins on 22nd June, and there is a change to the 243 mile course this year. After starting in Saint-Tropez and rounding the Giraglia rock (on the northern-most tip of Corsica) as normal, the fleet will finish in the Italian port of Genoa, home of the Yacht Club Italiano (YCI). Along with the YCI, the Yacht Club de Saint-Tropez are the event organisers. The length of the race will remain at 243 nautical miles, to maintain the tradition of the course record.
The Giraglia Rolex Cup will be held under the Offshore Racing Council’s Club (IMS) handicap rule, and is open to all yachts over 8.0 metres. There will be special categories for the Beneteau 40.7, Corel 45, Mumm 30 and 36, Mini Transat boats (which are an exception to the 8.0 metre minimum length rule) and Nautor’s Swan and Wally Yachts. Six boats will be required to form a class.
The offshore race, the Giraglia, is a Category 2 event, within the Special Regulations of the Offshore Racing Council, while the inshore races are Category 3. Entry for just the inshore racing, or just the offshore race, is permitted.