The past two days at the Royal Malta Yacht Club during the 2012 Rolex Middle Sea Race have seen the pontoons fill quickly. The line honours winner of this popular race has become sailing yacht Esimit Europa 2, arriving on Wednesday and the overall race winner, Hi Fidelity yacht, was confirmed yesterday evening. The focus moved to welcoming home the first Maltese boat together with the remainder of the fleet following a slow as well as punishing 606-nm competition.
Early this morning (Friday), the first Maltese finisher and last year’s overall champion Artie yacht, crossed the line. “This is a difficult race. The first night makes or breaks it,” explained co-skipper Christian Ripard, a veteran of the race. “We worked very hard that first night and got it right. Unfortunately we then got stuck in some big holes, which was very frustrating.” At Capo San Vito (the halfway mark) Artie failed to make the slight wind shift in time while her closest rivals took advantage and pulled clear. “The boats slightly larger than us were always a little bit ahead with the weather,” admitted Ripard.
Times recorded at waypoints along the course suggested luxury yacht Artie was leading on handicap for much of the race. Ripard insists that this did not affect the crew’s approach. “The race is over when its over, and we weren’t really aware of that. We did our best, it was a great race and everybody did a great job working really hard but we just kept on getting stuck.”
British boat Trustmarque Quokka yacht crossed the finish line at midday today. Skipper Philippe Falle was brimming with enthusiasm despite the long week: “Retiring never really crossed the mind. It was an intriguing race, a bit off the wall with the conditions and parking. The overall performance of team and scenery made up for everything. This is my favourite of the four (Rolex Middle Sea Races) I have done even though it was so slow.”
The nine boats still sailing have until 08:00 CEST on Saturday 27 October to complete the course ahead of tomorrow’s final prizegiving, to be held at the Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta at 12:00 CEST.
Slovenian entry, superyacht Esimit Europa 2, claimed line honours finishing the course in 85 hours, 33 minutes and 15 seconds.
South African entry, sailing yacht Hi Fidelity, is the overall race winner.
Superyacht News Related to "Rolex Middle Sea Race 2012: The first Maltese yacht Artie comes home"
- Rolex Middle Sea Race 2012 kicks off today with a coastal race
- 33rd Rolex Middle Sea Race, October 20 – 27, 2012
- Rolex Middle Sea Race 2012: Success in sport strongly linked to proper preparation
- Rolex Middle Sea Race 2012: Grand Start for 83 Yachts
- Rolex Middle Sea Race 2012: Race leader Esimit Europa 2 superyacht expected to cross the finish line shortly after midnight