Transat Jacques Vabre: we’re off again! All on the hunt for Beccaria


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Off we go, no more looking back, with 4,000 Ocean miles to cross for this Transat Jacques Vabre with destination Martinique. They start from Le Havre, as will the Imoca 60s, and from Lorient, as will the Class 40s and Multi 50s. The storm that shook half of Europe has now passed, but behind it still leaves a windy wake that the transatlantic doubles fleet will have to cross by engaging in a rather tough initial upwind.

Italy lost two important pieces, Pietro Luciani and Alberto Riva, along the way. The former, co-skipper on Dekuple, out of lawsuit due to damage sustained by Class 40 after impact with a UFO. The second is “licking” the wounds of a fractured tibial plateau suffered in the Le Havre-Lorient leg: he will have surgery, and will be out of racing about 3 months. It was a heavy balance for ours as they tackled the little more than 300 miles of the Le Havre-Lorient “prologue,” with Italy nonetheless smiling thanks to the
victory of Ambrogio Beccaria on Alla Grande Pirelli, who accumulated a little more than 1 hour’s lead over his pursuers.

Transat Jacques Vabre – How the Italians restart.

If for the Class 40s it is a restart, for the Imoca 60s it is a real beginning since they have never left the port of Le Havre. Giancarlo Pedote on Prysmian is ready to give battle, and face a course that for the 60 will have to leave to starboard the island of Porto Santo, Madeira. For the Tuscan skipper, it will be important to stay attached to the leading group in the first upwind phase, as in the Trade Wind it is likely that the new boats will increase the pace a lot and it will be more complicated to keep up.

Class 40s restart from Beccaria’s dominance in prologue: the Italian paired with Andrieu on Allahrande Pirelli proved to be the fastest in the fleet in pace, but also the most cynical in tacking and when there are tactical choices to be made in the melee, a trait that has always been in the DNA of the Milanese sailor. The lead of just over 1 hour over the rest of the fleet is too small to make any calculations; an attacking Beccaria is still needed to bring home an important result. Class 40s will have to leave Santa Maria starboard to the Azores.

Alberto Bona on IBSA finished eighth, limiting the gap, and remains one of the skippers to be monitored for the continuation of the race, being among other things his Class 40 Mach 5, Manuard project, a very high performance boat.

Andrea Fornaro will restart from 11th position, having nonetheless proved he can stay in the top 10 thanks to the new Influence 2, a muse 40 like Beccaria’s Allagrande Pirelli and Riva’s Acrobatica, all built by Sangiorgio Marine of Genoa.


Mauro Giuffrè



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