• Maxi Madness Runs Unfettered In Saint-Tropez

    Comanche puts on the show!
    Duel of giants: Topaz versus Velsheda, Jethou, Vesper, NorthStar ~to the happiness of 72 feet

    Obviously, as if it was enough to bring together the most beautiful maxi line-up in the most beautiful port in the world, the Mistral joined in today to showcase a grandiose opening. It is a current of Western tendency that welcomed the 45 Maxis Yachts competing for the very first event of this second week of the Voiles de Saint-Tropez 2021. The most beautiful Maxis, J Class, and other Wallys have taken up residence in the gulf at the invitation of the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez and intend to end their Mediterranean season there in the most dazzling way. 20 knots of a tonic wind coming out of the Gulf with a more marked swell offshore, the perfect opportunity for the Race Management, skilfully led by Georges Korhel, (Principal Race Officer of the Sails), to send these units cut for speed, on the side of the Fourmigue, this pebble planted in front of the Lavandou, for the longest coastal course of these Voiles, a beautiful loop of 40 miles. Sun, a resplendent sea and a strong breeze, all the ingredients were offered to these magnificent steeds and their international crews to put on a great show and share a great moment of pure sport.

    all images © Gilles Martin-Raget

    4 groups, 4 starts, but 5 classifications
    With good regularity, the 4 groups of Maxis in contention set off shortly after noon and 10 minutes apart from the Portalet, in view of a large audience. The "tall" sailboats of the IR1 group paved the way, towards the bottom of the gulf and a clearing line, and it is no great surprise that the record hunters Comanche , Rambler88 and Leopard 3 immediately threw themselves into the great and friendly explanation promised. At more than 17 knots upwind towards Le Lavandou, while the wind was gusting and whitening the sea, the three big prototypes clashed in a virile manner, in the foam and facing the wind. But then they also had to rely on other protagonists, also experienced in the exercise of the breeze regatta, starting with a great accustomed to the Tropéziens podiums, Magic Carpet Cubed, but also Deep Blue , the Botin 85 and Odin. , the great Swan 115 particularly at his business. Tailored for the downwind, Comanche literally flew past the mark of the Fourmigue, in a Mistral which at times strengthened to nearly 30 knots. With speed peaks of over 26 knots, the VPLP / Verdier plan was able to break through and somewhat outrun a Magic Carpet very comfortable in the breeze and at all speeds. Rambler 88 is to be credited with a good race, long in contact with Comanche but also powerless in the face of the spectacular flight of the Comanche "luge" with its portable paces ... In the lead at the finish with a good lead, Comanche n ' could have compensated for its terrible rating. This is Deep Blue , which gives the gain of the round, before Magic Carpet clubed and Rambler . Note that several Trophies will reward the great week launched in such a beautiful way, but 5 rankings will be formalized, the 72-footers wanting to do battle with each other! It is in fact at the request of the owners of the 72-foot (21.90 m) sailboats that the IRC3 group was therefore divided into two subdivisions, IRC A and IRC B; we will therefore find in the daily rankings 4 sailboats, Ambersail , the VOR 65, and the three 72-footers North Star, Jethou and Vesper . A fight in the fight between four sailboats with very similar ratings, guaranteeing a fight with knife drawn throughout the week.

    Saint-Tropez, scene of the Topaz-Velsheda duel between the giants
    The rivalry between the two Grand Class J still active in the Mediterranean, Velsheda and Topaz continues throughout the week within the framework of the Voiles. The two giants compete in the Super Maxis squad, IRC 2. The crew of Topaz , the J Class designed by Frank C. Paine and launched in 2015, are looking for revenge after being beaten last month by Velsheda in of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup in Porto Cervo, Sardinia. The competition for class J yachts at Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez takes place under IRC handicap in a group of six IRC 2 boats that feature designs as diverse as the Swan 82 Kallima, the 32.9m Wally Green Eyes , Silvertip , 33.83m long and designed by Dubois, and the Swan 80 Umiko . Francesco d'Angelis is sailing Topaz again as a tactician. Jules Salter, the English sailor, former Volvo Ocean Race winner and TP52 world champion, is looking forward to sailing Velsheda again . Topaz arrives with the winning crew from Velsheda to Porto Cervo virtually unchanged, with several Europeans recruited to replace New Zealanders who cannot travel. The regatta of the day kept all its promises, with a sumptuous mano a mano that lasted until the entrance to the gulf where Velsheda saw himself forced into abandonment, veil torn, when he had gained the upper hand over Topaz .
    The J-Class was used to define tall racing yachts built between 1930 and 1937 according to the Universal Gauge, established by Nathanael Herreshoff in 1903 and the New York Yacht Club as part of standardization of water sport at all sizes. 20 large J Class were designed between 1930 and 1937. Ten were built, Shamrock V, Endeavor, Velsheda , the originals, Ranger, Hanuman, Lionheart, Rainbow, Topaz, Svea , recent constructions on period plans.

    The beautiful 72-foot battle A
    demanding day for the crews and for the equipment subjected to severe testing in gusts of nearly 30 knots. The Race Management chose to reduce the route of the smaller Maxis grouped together in IRC 3 and 4. Many preferred to return to port rather than jeopardize the rest of the good week underway. The 72-footers reigned supreme in these IRC Groups 3 and 4. Jethou thus arrives in the rear of the Super Maxis, ahead of Vesper and North Star by just a few minutes . Obviously, the 72-foot week promises to be particularly hotly contested.

    Did you know?
    Ant, or Foumique.
    Located in the open sea, Fourmigue Island is a tiny rock lost in the bay of Lavandou, about 3 km from the coast. It is surmounted by a lighthouse. It is a popular crossing mark for the Voiles to the West routes.

    T opaz , designed in 1935, built in 2015
    The Class J Topaz (J8) is an unbuilt 1935 project by Frank C Paine A. Frank Paine had previously designed the yacht "Yankee", which was built by Lawleys in 1930. J8 was researched by Hoek's office and proved to be a good all-rounder. This is the longest waterline in the J-class, with the highest keel aspect ratio combined with the lowest wetted area. Frank Paine had already calculated in the 1930s that it was better to take a penalty on increased waterline length in a compromise between sail area and displacement.

    They said:
    Danny Galichan, Boat Captain Magic Carpet Cubed
    " We are a little disappointed with the final result (2nd in corrected time), because we were in contact with the best, Comanche and Rambler , up to Cap Camarat. A small problem has stopped us and we are wasting a lot of time. It was a superb regatta, with somewhat difficult sea conditions as we approached Lavandou, but wind and good speeds. Everyone on board is generally very satisfied this evening… ”

    Extraordinary yacht…
    Wally 107 Green Eyes
    The 32.83m yacht (ex. Kauris III) was built by Wally in Monaco in their shipyard in Fano. Her interior was designed by design house Studio Castellini and it was completed in 2002. The exterior design of this luxury vessel is the work of German Frers and she was last renovated in 2017. She sails in Saint -Tropez with the Grands Maxis in IRC 2, in particular against the two J Classes.

    Program 2021
    Week 2: Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez, Maxi Yachts
    Monday October 4: reception of large modern vessels over 18.29 m
    Wally, IRCA, Maxi yachts
    Tuesday 5, Wednesday 6, Thursday 7, Friday 8, Saturday 9: regattas
    Saturday 9 October: prize giving (week 2)

    This article was originally published in forum thread: Voiles de Saint-Tropez: The " Moderns" Take Center Stage started by Photoboy View original post