Towards the Transat Jacques Vabre: where can the Italians go from here?

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On October 29, the Transat Jacques Vabre, the most important transoceanic race to be run in this 2023, will start from Le Havre. This is a doubles regatta, open to the Imoca 60, Multi 50, Ultim and Class 40 Classes. For Italian sailing it is a particularly important event since as many as 6 homegrown sailors will be at the start. Five will be those engaged among the Class 40s: Ambrogio Beccaria, Alberto Bona, Andrea Fornaro, Alberto Riva and Pietro Luciani. Giancarlo Pedote will be among the Imoca 60 instead.

Transat Jacques Vabre – The Italians’ chances in the Class 40s

Allagrande Pirelli

Italian sailing has never been so competitive in the Ocean: all our skippers come with well-structured sports projects, backed by solid sponsors, all with a chance to do well in this Transat Jacques Vabre.

If we had to make predictions, Ambrogio Beccaria on Allagrande Pirelli and Alberto Bona on IBSA are the ones who start one step ahead of the others. The reason is simple to explain: first of all there is talent, which both have amply demonstrated they have, and then there are two ultra-competitive boats such as Beccaria’s Musa 40 and Bona’s Mach 3. Two designs that have proven to be among the fastest in the fleet and already have a year of fine-tuning behind them, which is crucial in terms of reliability and performance development.

IBSA

We can say that Ambrogio Beccaria, who will run in tandem with Nicolas Andrieru, is one of the favorites for the final victory. And Alberto Bona one of the skippers who could contend for a position on the podium, or at least in the top 5. Compared to Bona, in the last season Beccaria showed perhaps a pinch more competitive “nastiness” and “cynicism” when the race is in the hand-to-hand with very small gaps, but we are talking about minimal differences and the final result will be determined by the details and a pinch of luck. The prediction in this regard remains wide open for both.

Influence 2 by Andrea Fornaro

Andrea Fornaro and Alberto Riva are also sailing on a new Musa 40, the former paired with Benoit Hantzperg, the latter with Jean Marre. They start one step behind Bona and Beccaria simply because they only launched their boats during last summer and thus had a few months to put in precisely and work on boat reliability.

Alberto Riva

Their role could be that of potential outsiders, with Alberto Riva to be especially monitored because he could become one of the surprises of this Transat Jacques Vabre.

Dekuple, the Class 40 where co-skipper Pietro Luciani will be

Pietro Luciani runs instead in the role of co-skipper aboard the Class 40 Dekuple, paired with William Mathelin. This is not a Class 40 that can keep up with the pace of the very first ones, but it is likely nonetheless to expect a race behind or inside the top 10.

Transat Jacques Vabre – Pedote and Prysmian’s new foils

Prysmian Group by Giancarlo Pedote

Giancarlo Pedote is now an experienced skipper in the Imoca 60 fleet, having already completed a Vendée Globe and several transatlantics. He will be participating in the Transat Jacques Vabre paired with Gaston Morvan, and he will be on the starting line with his Prysmian updated with a bow and a pair of new foils. This is not enough to make Prysmian a boat fighting for the podium, as it still remains a craft that is now 8 years old under the hull. It will, however, be helpful in putting Pedote in a position to be able to race in the middle of the foil boat fleet.

For the Tuscan skipper, this Transat is an important test on his path to the next Vendée Globe. He needs to shake off the frustration of the last few races where he did not have a boat capable of sticking to the top train. The feeling that something more is also needed on his part: Pedote has been consistently cautious in his racing in recent outings, understandably caused by the fact that he does not have a budget at the level of the top teams in the class and any possible breakdown makes his schedule more difficult. If some Imoca 60s have ground teams composed of dozens and dozens of people, the same cannot be said of Giancarlo, who is indeed one of the first to have to “get his hands dirty” on the construction site. A not insignificant detail, which may limit the conviction to “attack” in the regatta, staying on a less risky course of action.

To see him in the top 10 of the class would be a very important achievement, also in terms of his confidence in himself and in the abilities he has so many times shown to have. Come on Giancarlo!

Mauro Giuffrè

 

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