Swan One Design braced for memorable week in Scarlino
Wednesday, May 1, 2019 8:11 AM
An impressive fleet of 24 yachts from 12 nations crewed by more than 280 sailors will contest the second round of The Nations Trophy Mediterranean League 2019.
The splendid Marina di Scarlino, nestled on the Tuscan coastline, will host competition with racing starting tomorrow, Wednesday 1 May, and concluding on Saturday 4 May. Across three One Design classes – ClubSwan 50, Swan 45 and ClubSwan 42 – racing at the Scarlino Swan One Design promises to be intense and is bolstered by an increase of ten yachts compared to the season opener held in Monaco in early April. The quality of the fleet is matched by the outstanding level of sailing talent onboard, a veritable who’s who of the sport.
On and off the water, the event celebrates a number of significant occasions such as the official commencement of Nautor’s Swan’s sustainable regatta initiative, Friday’s worldwide premiere of the ClubSwan 36 and several opportunities for the Swan family to participate in joyful social occasions, notably the Owners’ Dinner partnered by Banor.
The event is organised by the Club Nautico Scarlino with whom Nautor’s Swan enjoys a close association. Today provided the opportunity for the fleet to engage in a few hours of practice racing followed by the Opening Ceremony and Skippers’ Briefing.
“We are very excited about this week’s regatta in Scarlino which offers a diverse and rich programme of events. Our first sustainable regatta marks an important milestone for Nautor’s Swan in our deep commitment to protecting the ocean environment,” explains Nautor’s Swan Group CEO, Giovanni Pomati. “We are delighted by the engagement and enthusiasm of the crews and all involved in the regatta in implementing these eco-friendly measures. A fantastic week of sailing – with the prospect of good breeze – is ahead of us, taking place in the home of Nautor’s Swan in Italy.”
Eleven ClubSwan 50 yachts will contest the four days of racing, an increase on the eight crews who participated in Monaco. Leonardo Ferragamo’s Cuordileone (Italy) emerged as the narrow victors of the season opener which witnessed different winners across the three races. It would not be unreasonable to expect the leaderboard to change dramatically throughout the regatta given the typically close nature of competition in this burgeoning class. A factor intensified by the impressive level of tactical expertise onboard comprising the likes of Bouwe Bekking (Niramo), Fernando Echávarri (Skorpios), Chris Larson (Earlybird), Iker Martinez (Mathilde), Tiziano Nava (Drifter Sail), Ken Read (Cuordileone), Nacho Postigo (Perhonen) and Jochen Schümann (OneGroup).
Martinez, an Olympic gold medallist, is sailing his second ClubSwan 50 regatta having debuted in Monaco. He is also fresh to the allure of Scarlino, sailing here for the first time. The first impressions have been positive. “It looks like a fantastic place to sail and from the two days spent here we like it a lot. The forecast shows different conditions from Monaco, with medium winds initially, possibly becoming stronger later in the week.” Mathilde finished sixth in Monaco and will look to build on that performance in Scarlino. “Monaco was a very good experience especially for what concerned teamwork,” continues Martinez. “With eleven boats here so close in speed, the key will be consistency, not taking too many risks or putting the boat in bad situations.”
From three entrants in Monaco, the Swan 45 fleet has doubled in size for Scarlino. The reigning World Champion Porron IX (Spain) dominated last time but can expect a tough contest from a fleet made up of Blue Nights (Finland), Fever (Great Britain), Motions (Netherlands), Swing Cube (Italy) and Thetis (Italy). Unlike a number of her rivals, Tea Ekengren-Saurén, owner of Blue Nights since 2016, is no stranger to Scarlino having competed in one design events here before. “It is like a second home, and the conditions are usually very good. We are newcomers in this class, and it will be very exciting to see how we get on. Today in the practice we did very well, and hope for similar conditions all week.”
Crowned European Champions at the Rolex Swan Cup in September, Mela (Italy) is one of seven ClubSwan 42s set to battle for supremacy this week. Owner Andrea Rossi is well aware of the quality of his crew’s opponents. “We have some very strong professional teams here. Generally, 8-12 knots suit us. We hope for the best. Ultimately, who makes the fewest mistakes across the week will succeed.” A first-time visitor to Scarlino, Rossi is impressed with the facilities and environment, adding, “this place is really amazing.” Lorenzo Mondo’s Far Star (Italy) took the plaudits with victory in Monaco while the return of multiple European champion Natalia (Romania) adds further lustre to the competition.
Nautor's Swan & Sustainability
The Scarlino Swan One Design marks the official launch of Nautor’s Swan sustainable regatta project. With the support of Marevivo, Nautor is committed to eliminating the presence of single-use plastic on board all yachts as well as within regatta venues. Those who love spending time at sea, such as the sailing community, make natural ambassadors in the campaign to protect it. Reusable materials and best practice advice regarding sustainability have been shared with all participating crews. A commitment to implementing eco-friendly measures and protecting the environment is something which unites all partners involved in the event.
“This year we are also promoting sustainability during sailing events,” explains Marevivo's Institutional Relations Officer Raffaella Giugni. “This is the first Swan One Design regatta that promotes this concept. Sailing is a way to create a deep relationship with the sea and should always be practiced with respect for the marine ecosystem. We have been focused on the concept of stopping single use plastic giving all participating crews products, such as reusable bottles and tanks, and inviting them to reuse these objects even at future regattas.”
Starting tomorrow – first warning signal at 12:00 local time – the Scarlino Swan One Design regatta comprises four days of inshore, windward-leeward competition. The prize giving will be held after the final race on 4 May. Races will be overseen by Ariane Mainemare, Principal Race Officer of The Nations Trophy Mediterranean League 2019.