Farewell to Marina Bulgari the woman who won the world championship with Straulino


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Marina Bulgari and Tino Straulino on the Kerkyra II
Marina Bulgari and Tino Straulino on Ydra

The only woman owner in history to win a world sailing championship is gone. Marina Spaccarelli Bulgari has died at the age of 93.

Marina Bulgari. Woman, sailor, entrepreneur

His name is inextricably linked to that of Ydra, the One Tonner that under the command ofAdmiral Tino Straulino won the One Ton Cup, the world championship for 11/12-meter boats of the time, in Porto Cervo in 1973. Historic victory because he beat Ganbare, the revolutionary boat of a then-unknown California boy named Douglas Peterson, to the wire.

Marina Spaccarelli Bulgari is a milestone in sailing history because women owners in the 1970s were white flies. Men dominated the scene and even today it is rare to find women owners and crew members in boating. Recall in recent times Wendy Schmidt who won the Barcolana 2022.

Jeweler to Marella Agnelli and Loren

A member of the Bulgari family, famous fashion maison, Marina was not only a seafarer, she was also an entrepreneur. Having left Bulgari, she founded her exclusive jewelry brand Marina B, adored and worn by the jet set. Marella Agnelli and Sophia Loren among his clients.

marina bulgari
Marina Spaccarelli Bulgari

Marina Bulgari and its beautiful boats

Marina Spaccarelli Bulgari was a true sailor, not just an owner. The passion was passed on to her by her husband Giorgio Spaccarelli, a Navy officer, who shortly after their marriage bought Kerkyra I, a Sparkman & Stephens design built of wood by the Carlini shipyard in Rimini. But in 1963 her husband died in a car accident. Marina does not know what to do with Kerkira I. To her rescue comes family friend Agostino Straulino, who is at that time the most titled, famous, and sought-after helmsman.

The Kerkyra I

Marina decides to keep the boat, on the strength of Straulino’s help. Thus was born the successful and long-lasting Marina Spaccarelli Bulgari – Agostino Straulino partnership that gave birth to five exceptional boats: the aforementioned Kerkyra I (1963, m. 12.62 x 12.62, S&S design, Carlini shipyard), the Kerkyra II (1966, m. 11.15 x 2.88 S&S design, Abeking&Rasmussen shipyard), Kerkyra III (1970, m. 12.62 X 3.27, S&S design, Carlini shipyard), Kerkyra IV (1971, m. 12.70×3.48, S&S design, Alpa shipyard, Alpa 12.70 model), Ydra (1973, m. 11.27 X 3.39, Dick Carter design, Abeking&Rasmussen shipyard).

marina bulgari
Ardi, the former Kerkyra II

With Tino Straulino indissoluble partnership

Marina was always aboard her boats, around the Mediterranean, both in transfers and in regattas. There is a historical photo that captures his passion and partnership with Straulino.


Marina and Tino smile happily in Ydra’s cockpit, soaking wet at the finish of the One Ton Cup in Porto Cervo after the long race that sealed their victory in the memorable 1973 One Ton Cup.

We remember it this way.



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