We reveal all the big events of the VELAFestival


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It is called VELAFestival because it is not a boat show, but a great all-around sailing festival. A succession of unmissable events that will feature great sailors and sailors, explorers and personalities. Let’s look together at the entire agenda from Thursday through Sunday. Do not prerecord anything!

Inauguration of the VELAFestival
Along the harbor of Santa Margherita Ligure
Let’s all cut the VELAFestival “ribbon” together and kick off the party along the harbor docks for the four days dedicated to our passion.

FRIDAY 5, 3 p.m.
Great sailors: Gaetano Mura recounts
Events & Video Area
The two Italian sailors to have tried to go around the world in recent years bear the names of Gaetano Mura and Matteo Miceli. Mura was the last to try but had to throw in the towel in Australia due to serious technical problems, still proving himself a top-notch sailor. Miceli, on the other hand, had tried two years ago, coming within a whisker of the feat before losing his keel in the Atlantic ascent. We will put them together on the same stage for an unprecedented event during which Matteo Miceli will interview Gaetano Mura and together they will talk about their experiences and future plans. Of course, there will be no shortage of spectacular videos and photos that will give goosebumps, a unique and not-to-be-missed event-debate that will also be an opportunity to take stock of the situation of Italian ocean sailing with two protagonists who have experienced the Ocean and hope to return to it soon.

FRIDAY 5, FROM 7 p.m.
The 2017 Sailor of the Year and Tribute
TAG Heuer Events & Video/Terrace Area
The most important award in Italian sailing has been blowing out the candle of 25 editions since 1991, and it will do so in grand style, with the Evening of Champions during which the 2017 Sailor of the Year will be proclaimed and the five champions who have made our sport great during the past year will be honored. If that wasn’t enough, we decided to go big, during the event there will also be the “Birthday” of Arpege, which instead blows out 50 candles. In port you can admire the 1972 Sula, Arpege, and hear the story of its restoration told directly by its owner. This will be followed by a party on the dock, and on the terrace, for everyone, with the presence of the great sailors of Italian sailing with whom you can discuss or dialogue.

TAG Heuer VELA Cup Regatta
Gulf of Tigullio
The quintessential regatta for all and the most well-attended sailing event in the Tyrrhenian Sea. Do you have a drift? A small cabin cruiser or a 40-meter maxi? At the VELACup there is room for everyone, no one excluded, any sail-powered vehicle can participate and has a chance to win one of the prestigious prizes up for grabs. The regatta will run along a coastal route within the Gulf of Tigullio, everyone can watch the sea party from land. Many of you will remember that in 2016 there were over 200 entrants with a show in the Gulf of Tigullio that is hard to forget. We are working to break the record of 206 boats and have even more participants, fun for all and entertainment. SIGN UP NOW

TAG Heuer VELA Cup Awards Party
TAG Heuer Events & Video/Terrace Area
After the regatta is over, we will relax on the dock where there will be a chance to meet the great sailors, and prepare for the big night. It will all begin with the award ceremony of the first of the scheduled VELACup regattas: lots of winners in the various categories in an informal atmosphere of celebration and relaxation. Among the prizes, raffled off, was a beautiful TAG Heuer watch.

TAG Heuer VELA Cup Party
Events & Video Area/Tag Heuer Terrace/ Harbour Cove Square
Imagine finding yourself on the dock after the regatta, with your sailing friends and opponents, commenting on the day spent at sea, telling each other about “that tack or that gybe,” amid music, good food and merriment. This will be the TAG Heuer VELA Cup Party, an event for all of us to enjoy among the Santa Margherita harbor docks, with spaghetti and wine for all, or on the beautiful paronamic terrace overlooking the village and the Gulf of Tigullio. Music and entertainment until late at night.

TAG Heuer VELA Cup Regatta
Events & Video Area/ TAG Heuer Terrace/ Harbor Cove Square
Be careful not to overdo it during the party, because Sunday morning will be the time to return to the sea with the VELACup “rematch,” and you will need the utmost lucidity to draw skillful edges on the chessboard of the Gulf of Tigullio with its breezes. Can’t stand that your dock neighbor beat you during the Saturday regatta? Don’t worry, you will have a chance to make up for it in the second round. Same place, same gulf and always great show with hundreds of boats in the sea.

SUNDAY 7, 11 A.M.
Close Encounters
Events & Video Area/Terrace TAG Heuer Piazzetta of the Harbour Cove
The Garmin Sailing Academy chronicles the glories and exploits of our sailors and how they use electronic instruments during their crossings, with useful information for all sailing, sailing and racing enthusiasts. Setting up instruments for high-level use, for example that in regattas but also on cruises with very long sailings, is not child’s play, and the advice of the most experienced may prove useful if not invaluable. For this reason Garmin has involved its champions, they will be in Santa Margherita, and will speak at the VELAFestival, Alberto Bona, Michele Zambelli and Gaetano Mura.

Treasure Hunting/Orienteering
Beach Village and throughout the VELAFestival area.
Between the beach, the sea and the docks of the harbor, the folks at Outdoor Portofino will lead us on a very fun orienteering-style treasure hunt. Pack your compass, a map and bring out your spirit of adventure because there will really be fun to be had.Free participation!

TAG Heuer VELA Cup Awards Ceremony
Events & Video Area/Tag Heuer Terrace/ Harbour Cove Square
After such an intense four days saying goodbye will be difficult. The wish is that we have given you a VELAFestival that lives up to your, and our, great passion and that we can see you all again, and more, next year. We will close our review with the award ceremony of the second round of the VELACup and once again it will be a pleasure to meet at the end of the day with tanned and tired faces but happy to have been part of this great tribe that is sailors. Again, there will be no shortage of prizes for all categories of boats in the regatta. And, if there is anyone who has not succeeded in beating their arch-rival from the dock, don’t worry, we are already working on the upcoming 2017 editions around Italy, and there will be no shortage of news for next year as well, but we cannot anticipate anything yet. Sailors, participate!



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