Luna Rossa launches Gradoni – Tita pair at helm of AC 40 in Jeddah

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Luna Rossa's AC 40
Luna Rossa’s AC 40

The America’s Cup is preparing to land for the first time in Saudi Arabia, with the Preliminary Regattas in Jeddah scheduled, on the AC 40s, from Nov. 30 to Dec. 2. As we told you in our presentation of Luna Rossa’s helmsmen, the Jeddah Preliminaries are a great opportunity to try out new crew formations, and to give other team members a chance to get into race mode as well. Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli has announced the call-ups for the trip to Arabia, and there is no shortage of new names compared to Vilanova’s Preliminaries.

Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli – The Summoners for Jeddah

Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli members summoned for the Preliminary Regatta in Jeddah (final crew will be selected on a daily basis) are: Ruggero Tita (helmsman), Marco Gradoni (coxswain), Umberto Molineris (trimmer), Vittorio Bissaro (trimmer), Federico Colaninno (trimmer). Compared to the Vilanova trip, the Italian team changes almost all elements, the only one who has been reintroduced is Umberto Molineris, and now all eyes are on the coxswains.

For the first time in four years at the helm of Luna rossa will not be James Spithill and Francesco Bruni, but Marco Gradoni and Ruggero Tita. Three-time world champion optmist Gradoni and Olympic Nacra 17 gold medalist Tita will race together for the first time, and while the former is certainly destined for the Youth crew, the latter is in the hunt for a spot on the AC 75. The other new entries are those of Vittorio Bissaro, who once the Olympic campaign is over will devote himself totally to Luna Rossa, and Federico Colaninno, also most likely destined then to the Youth crew.

This is the first time the America’s Cup has sailed in the waters of the Red Sea,” said Max Sirena, Skipper and Team Director of Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli, “and we are therefore happy and curious to confront each other on a competition field that is a first for everyone. In keeping with our sporting approach of rotating sailing team members in order to find the perfect mix for the 37th America’s Cup, we will have a different crew in Jeddah than Vilanova, with several new faces“.

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