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Yacht Club de Monaco Awards - Trophée Credit Suisse 2020

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Yacht Club de Monaco Awards - Trophée Credit Suisse 2020
Yacht Club de Monaco Awards - Trophée Credit Suisse 2020

The traditional Winter Cocktail, which welcomes new members before the YCM Awards - Trophée Credit Suisse are presented, went ahead this year albeit remotely in compliance with the current health situation. Yacht Club de Monaco President, HSH the Sovereign Prince Albert II, rewarded sailors who proudly fly the Principality’s colours and have made a mark on the world’s race areas.

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Yachting at the service of safeguarding our seas and oceans
First the focus of this 16th YCM Awards was on offshore racing, given the participation ofSeaexplorer-Yacht Club de Monaco, helmed by Boris Herrmann in the 9th Vendée Globe.
 
Before talking about the sporting aspect, HSH Prince Albert II was keen to stress the importance of the Principality’s environmental mission in the yachting world.

“Boris’s goal is to collect more data on temperature, salinity and currents, but also the state and chemical composition of the sea in parts of the world less frequented by yachtsmen. Unfortunately, I believe that Boris has already noted the presence of plastic on the surface. I am very proud that we have been able to join the forces of my Foundation and the Yacht Club de Monaco around Team Malizia to make this a sporting and ecological project to protect our seas and oceans.”
 
It was also an opportunity to remind everyone that the Yacht Club de Monaco and the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation have been working together for two years now, in a partnership with Credit Suisse, on the Superyacht Eco Association’s SEA Index, a benchmark to measure 40m+ yachts’ environmental impact and help them meet carbon reduction emission targets.
 
Midway on the Vendée Globe
The Malizia project, renamed Seaexplorer-Yacht Club de Monaco for the Vendée Globe, was initiated by YCM Vice-President Pierre Casiraghi who spoke about his friend’s race.
 
“Boris is having a fantastic race. The Vendée is a race of elimination, especially in these last two weeks. We have seen lots of breakages on boats. Of course, Boris has had a few small technical issues, forcing him to keep a course further north, but he has managed to preserve the boat which is essential. The milder conditions have enabled him to fix them. For the last couple of weeks he’s been missing a very important intermediary sail (J2). The boat can now be used in optimum conditions and Boris is in great shape, ready to tackle the second part of the race. It’s incredible that after 37 days at sea, he is neck and neck with four other contestants.”
 
Currently lying 6th in this legendary non-stop solo race without assistance, the German skipper has just passed Cape Leeuwin and wished to send his Club a video message: “Greetings from the southern ocean, or more precisely from south of Australia in the Indian Ocean. There is still a long way to go. I wish a warm welcome to all the new members, who I will have the pleasure of meeting on my return to the Principality”.

YCM Awards 2020 - Trophée Credit Suisse: winners for all generations
The youngest opened the ball with the YCM Youth Awards 2020 that encourage talented youngsters.
Matteo Asscher, 13, was this year’s winner in the Optimist category for his 3rd place at the Monaco Optimist Team Race 2020 and for having already competed twice in the European Championship, although he only very recently started sailing. “Matteo has one of the fastest progression curves, he’s an asset, very diligent, motivated and with an excellent attitude,” said his coach Margaux Meslin.
 
A regular on the J/70 regatta scene, Pierrik Devic received a special prize for his excellent results in the Laser Master. Having embarked on this physically tough Olympic solo class boat, he won the Euro Master Circuit 2020 in the Laser Radial Master category and clinched 4th place in his category at the Laser Master European Championship.  
 
The YCM Awards 2020 also recognises members who have best defended the Club’s burgee during the past year. In the Smeralda 888 class whose president is HRH Prince Charles de Bourbon-Siciles, the big winner was Timofey Sukhotin. At the helm of Beda, this year he won the Primo Cup - Trophée Credit Suisse, Coppa Europa and finished 2nd in the Smeralda 888 finale in October.
 
In the YCM’s flagship J/70 class with 17 boats flying the burgee, Ludovico Fassitelli took the honours as he did last year. He finished 3rd in the 2019/2020 Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series at the end of 20 races, 1st in the Med Cup, 7th in the Malcesine J/70 Cup, 5th in the J/70 Italian Championship and winner in the Corinthian (amateur) category. 
 
The coveted ‘YCM Sailor of the Year’ 2020 award went to Lord Laidlaw (Highland Fling/Oui Fling), nominated three years in a row since 2017, for the sum of his successes in the world’s most prestigious races. He talked of his passion and what motivates him: “I like new challenges, but above all I love getting a project to work and making it a success, which is not easy. It means finding the right boat, a good crew, organising the training sessions… Everything must dovetail to perfection. What inspires me most is winning. I love competing but I prefer winning races even more”. 

Lord Laidlaw is not only passionate about sailing he is also a committed philanthropist focused on young people through his Laidlaw Foundation. This revolves around three main principles: fighting inequality and poverty through education, inspiring them to believe in their potential to be tomorrow’s leaders, and thirdly supporting women to achieve top class business degrees and take their place in the business world. 
 
On course for 2021
 
With the dawning of a new year, the YCM fully intends to maintain its course when it comes to innovative projects like the Monaco Energy Boat Challenge (6-10 July 2021). This annual event transforms the Club into an incubator supporting R&D in the shipping sector, stimulating the creativity of tomorrow’s engineers and professionals to devise propulsion systems using only clean energy.
 
Owner of the 1909 gaff cutter Tuiga, YCM also remains very attached to its sailing heritage with the 15th Monaco Classic Week – La Belle Classe (8-12 September 2021), and its sporting vocation with the 37th Primo Cup - Trophée Credit Suisse (4-7 March 2021).
 

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