Francesca Clapcich on the trimaran Ocean Fifty with a female crew


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Trieste’s Francesca Clapcich is increasingly a major player in the world of ocean racing, after the announcement of the sports and social project to be developed with 11Th Hour Racing, comes another news. Clapcich and 11Th Hour Racing will also be supported by MerConcept, the company founded by François Gabart that trains professional skippers for the most important ocean races being run, for two seasons of racing on Ocean Fifty trimarans.

Francesca Clapcich will have the role of skipper in a crew of 6 sailors, all women, who will participate in the major events of the class until 2026. Clapcich will be tasked with selecting the crew, training them, and identifying a sailor who can be entrusted with the tiller of the helm at the 2026 Rhum Route. In short, a responsible role that will serve the Trieste-born woman to further develop her skills, she who is the only sailor in Italy who can boast of having won a round-the-world crewed race, the last edition of The Ocean Race.

Clapcich will therefore not be involved in the 2026 Rhum Route, partly because her long-term goal is to be at the start of the 2028 Vendée Globe in Imoca 60. So it seems logical that the Italian sailor after this period as skipper of the Ocean Fifty, will change classes to devote herself to her solo challenge project. In the meantime, he will be at the helm of the trimaran that MerConcept purchased from Armel Tripon, waiting to learn who his traveling companions will be.

Francesca Clapcich – The “Mula de Trieste”

Francesca Clapcich at Imoca 60 coffee grinder

Born in 1988 in Trieste, Italy, but a resident of Utah, Francesca Clapcich is now one of Italy’s most multifaceted sailors, as well as one of the most experienced in the international arena as well. Two Olympics behind her, in Laser in London 2012 with 19th place, in Rio paired with Giulia Conti in 49er she finished fifth instead.

After her experience in the Olympic classes, with a European and world gold medal in 49er and several other Italian titles, Francesca turned her attention to something else and discovered the pleasures of the high seas. Start sailing on different classes, try the Figaro 3 as a contact with the big oceanic offshore, finally comes the opportunity for the first round-the-world voyage with Turn the tide on Plastic in the 2017-2018 edition. An edition that positively marks the career of Francesca, who continues to sail in Figaro 3 by participating in a Solitaire du Figaro in 2021, the first Italian woman to try her hand at this very tough all-French test.

For the last of The Ocean Race. her name has long been at the center of the hypothetical birth of an Italian crew that never materialized, but Francesca Clapcich’s international profile meant that the Trieste native found a place in Charlie Enright’s crew, 11Th Hour Racing, with whom she has competed in all but two stages.

For ocean sailing of the present and future, Francesca Clapcich is a solid reality on the way to Vendée Globe 2028.

Mauro Giuffrè




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