“What was I thinking when I was a child on my father’s Alpa 12.70 in the picture above? Let’s hope it doesn’t overturn!”. “What has changed today compared to when I went around the world? Everything! Not even GPS or phone, you used to connect twice a week with Pierluigi, a radio amateur from Ravenna”. And again: “When I saved Isabelle Autissier I had a galley full of food, I brought her Italian aperitifs and cheeses, she was amazed at how she was used to French ‘barbarian’ food”.
In this ninety-minute interview realized by our Eugenio Ruocco in collaboration with Paolo Martano of the Italian Naval League of Milan, visible in the events area of Milano Yachting Week – The digital Boat Show, he is really a freewheeling Giovanni Soldini. The most famous navigator in Italy told us about everything. From his thoughts on the Vendée Globe (the solo world tour), “it’s not as unique as it used to be”, to his colleagues Pedote and Beccaria, from his history (from his beginnings in Flying Junior) to the Cuban experience up to the world tours that have consigned him to history, from Soldini cruising to his sailing myths.
All seasoned with anecdotes that reveal the “secret” side of Soldini: “The earring from Capo Hornier? I made it myself, without ice!”. “I have a tractor. “I love to repair things, I’m a serial repairer”. “Who wouldn’t I take on a boat with me? Salvini and Trump.
He was born in Milan on May 16, 1966 and began sailing as a child. He has over thirty years of ocean racing, including two solo round-the-world races (one win and a second place), six Québec-Saint Malo (one win in the monohull category), six Ostar (two wins in the 50-foot class and 40-foot class), three Jacques Vabre (one win in the 40-foot class), and more than 40 transoceanic races.
On board the VOR70 Maserati set the Cadiz-San Salvador and Gold Route records by covering the 13,225 miles between New York and San Francisco in 47 days, 42 minutes and 29 seconds. In 2015, he set the innovative Tea Route record, covering the distance between San Francisco and Shanghai in just over 21 days. With the Maserati Multi70 trimaran, he set the record on the Hong Kong-London route and recently won the line honours of the Rolex Middle Sea Race.
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