Giraglia 2024: what the weather will be, who is there, who will win

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The Giraglia lighthouse, in the far north of Corsica, is the iconic “natural buoy” of the oldest and most famous offshore regatta in the Mediterranean.

Today is the last day of costs at the Loro Piana Giraglia, but they are already looking ahead to the “long,” the 243-mile offshore trial that will start from Saint Tropez on Wednesday, June 12, at 12 p.m., with 144 boats on the starting line among IRC (89 entries), ORC (55 entries) – here you will find the list of participants. The great off-shore classic of the Mediterranean, for the first time with Loro Piana as main partner.


What a Giraglia we should expect

A race that promises to be challenging weather-wise, probably very fast in the first part and uncertain on the way up to Genoa.

The course will be the usual one, after the start there will be a short coastal stretch to the Ile du Levant, then the descent to the Giraglia and the return to the finish line in Genoa.

Giraglia
The 100-foot Black Jack that crossed the finish line first at last year’s Giraglia

For the real-time victory will be a battle between the 100-foot ARCA by Fast & Furio Sailing Team and the first to cross the finish line in the last edition, Remon Vos’ 100-foot Black Jack 100, the different Wallycento in regatta (Galateia, Magic Carpet Cubed, V, as well as the 93 Bullitt and the 94.2 Sensei), the various 72-footers such as North Star of London, Jethou e Jolt, and the 62 Flying Nikka steering wheel: the outcome of the line honors will depend a lot on what the weather conditions will be like, which promises to be very “challenging” as anticipated.


Loro Piana Giraglia – What the weather will be like.

The high pressure has “broken,” and Atlantic flows have now for 48 hours begun their raids in the Mediterranean, bringing somewhat unstable weather to the northern Tyrrhenian Sea. The start of the Giraglia will be in the Northwest regime, which in its descent toward Corsica could rotate west-northwest, with an average intensity in the first part of the race that should settle around 20 knots or something more, and a sea that will begin to be quite formed, even 2-3 meters of wave. Instability could bring some risk of rain showers overnight.

The windiest part will be just in the evening between June 12 and 13, with highs up to 30, then the wind may drop slightly and start to be more unstable. In fact, the ascent back to Genoa for most of the fleet could be complicated by a windless depression center that will go exactly off Genoa.

Esimit Europa 2’s record at risk

With more than tense winds for the duration of the first 12 hours, the possibility of someone breaking the long-running Giraglia course record cannot be ruled out, dating back to 2012 when the 30-meter maxi Esimit Europa 2 (formerly Alfa Romeo) captained by Igor Simcic (skippered by Olympic legend Jochen Schuemann) completed the 243 miles in 14 hours, 56 minutes and 16 seconds. The maxi’s average speed was about 18 knots, with peaks of 30 around the Giraglia lighthouse. On the dock there are rumors of fair weather conditions for the 100-footer and also for the 62-footer Flying Nikka. We shall see.


Who will win the Giraglia

After a very fast and tough first part, the finish therefore promises to be rather uncertain and could determine the fate of the victory in IRC handicap, the ranking that will award the overall victory of the Loro Piana Giraglia (which goes to the overall category with the most entries, the IRC in this case).

The TP52 Red Bandit

For this one, the special observers are the different Tp52s in racing, as Red Bandit winner of the 2023 edition or but also watch out for Ker 46s such as Gianni Di Vincenzo‘s Italian Lisa R, winner in 2022 and the various JPKs (from 10.10 to 11.80), which on long IRCs are very high performing boats. Never forgetting the “little ones,” who under uncertain conditions of arrival in Genoa for the maxis might even take advantage of it. The past has taught us how surprises are never lacking at the Giraglia (remember, for example, when an old Hallberg-Rassy 41 won?).

We shall see. Once again this year, for the 71st time (here is the history of the regatta), happy Giraglia to all!

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