Sunday, March 23, 2014

Loro Piana Caribbean Superyacht Regatta - Final Day

For the final day of racing the race committee chose to set a custom course, sending the fleet to a windward laid mark and a spreader before setting them on a downwind run towards the Dog Islands. Leaving the Dogs to starboard, the course continued toward a laid mark near Ginger Island, with the return to the finish leaving the Dogs to starboard once again.

Right from the start there was a split in the fleet, with the first two superyachts to cross the line, the 29m Altair and the 60m Seahawk opting to head right up the beat, while Tempus Fugit and Moonbird went left. By the first mark, it was Tempus Fugit that had stolen the early lead, rounding 50 seconds ahead of Seahawk, with Moonbird sneaking up the inside just three seconds later. With the fleet choosing to split left or right, there was some close action at the first mark that demonstrated just how close superyachts can race.

As the superyachts hoisted their kites at the spreader mark, once again the fleet split between gybes. Moonbird began to haul in Tempus Fugit and before long had taken the lead on the water, which she then stretched all the way round the course.

By the final leg, Marie had stormed through to second on the water, followed by Sarafin, Twizzle, Tempus Fugit and Nilaya, and meaning that many of the final standings in the three Classes were still wide open. By the time the fleet had finished the last leg to the finish, tension was high, but when the corrected times were calculated it was the J Class Rainbow with Pier Luigi Loro Piana at the helm that had come through to take the win in Class A ahead of Nilaya and the 50m Fitzroy Ohana.

In Class B, another solid race by the Swan Freya gave her another bullet, ahead of the 57m Twizzle putting in another strong performance followed by the 55m ketch Marie. The Class C win went to Moonbird, who had pulled out enough of a lead on the water to hold off a strong challenge by Sarafin, with Tempus Fugit coming home third.

After such a dramatic finish to the event, Bernard Lambilliotte of Moonbird was all smiles with the win. "My first reaction," he said after racing, "is to thank everyone for organising such a beautiful regatta and for getting together such an exceptional gathering of superyachts. I was here two years ago, the first event was a pretty exciting one to start with. What you see today is nearly a repeat of what we have in Sardinia in the summer, even better given the setting. We had very friendly and super professional racing so I really enjoyed it, it was really fantastic."

The final regatta standings gave the Class A win to Nilaya after a fantastic performance, with Rainbow taking second on count back over Ohana in third. It was a similar story in Class B, the dominant performance of Freya gave her overall victory, but a tight battle between Twizzle and Marie ended with Twizzle taking second on count back and Marie landing third. In Class C, Moonbird's solid race today secured her Class win over Sarafin, with Tempus Fugit taking a creditable third.

A fantastic event was had by all and everyone here at Megayacht Global are looking forward to next years action. For more information and videos visit Boat International Media.

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