Three Italians so high at the same time in a leg of the Mini Transat. From memory we believe this is an event that has never happened before. Alberto Riva, who is even aiming to win this second leg of the regatta, found himself in very good company, with Giovanni Mengucci and Giammarco Sardi following him a few miles behind. To dream of a historic achievement, when the finish line in Saint François is now 1,000 miles away, may be legitimate. But who are the three “musketeers” who are making us dream in the temple of transalpine sailing?
THE MAGNIFICENT THREE OF THE ITALIAN MINI TRANSAT
Giovanni Mengucci: 21 years old, from Santa Marinella, with a degree in Naval Engineering from Southampton, is an absolute newcomer to the Mini Transat, as he has been attending the class since 2018 after falling in love with it. He is running the regatta with a 2019 Pogo 3, set off with the goal of gaining experience and having his say in an ultra-competitive fleet, with the desire to take the race all the way and then take a look at the leaderboard. But his performance is revealing perhaps the birth of a new talent. Already in the first leg he had shown that he was in “phase” with the regatta, this second one could be his final consecration.
Giammarco Sardi: he has shown for a couple of years now that he can do very well in the Mediterranean circuit. He set out with the intent to give and “bother” inside the Series fleet, and he is succeeding in doing just that. The 34-year-old Roman is racing a 2019 Maxi 650, a boat then that puts him on par in terms of performance with the top 10 contenders. He is a rookie to the regatta but not to the Ocean, as he crossed it with a sport cat paired with Tullio Picciolini in 2019. A sailor of tough feats.
Alberto Riva: already on the eve of the regatta he was being referred to as the most “dangerous” skipper in the Italian group, as he also proved to be competitive against the French fleet in the last races of the season run in the Ocean. He races with a Vector, on which his friend Ambrogio Beccaria, with whom he took his first steps in the Mini, also rode. The 29-year-old Riva, an engineer with a master’s degree in nanotechnology, seems to have the makings of one of Italy’s best ocean sailors in the near future.
THE SITUATION IN THE STANDINGS
Alberto Riva, now second behind Blin, continues to alternate between first and second positions with each survey. Aerobatic Construction is heading south again today, looking for a better approach trajectory toward Saint François and Guadeloupe. Riva, if he wants to try to aim for the overall classification, must win the stage and give a gap of more than 12 hours to Frenchman Hugo Dhallene, currently not far behind the Italian. A difficult feat, but stage success seems within reach. Giammarco Sardi, third, and Giovanni Mengucci, seventh, are stable in the top 10, 27 and 16 miles behind the leader. Luca Del Zozzo is 13th, Francesco Renella 27th. Matteo Sericano among the Prototypes is in 20th position.
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