Image credits: Colin Squire – www.yachtingmatters.com
The Caribbean season is drawing to a close and focus is now switching to the upcoming Mediterranean circuit where interest is as high as ever. With 22 entries already confirmed for the Palma Superyacht Cup regatta the STP boatyard and Moll Vell docks that play host to the Superyacht Cup Palma are close to full capacity.
Palma has always been a popular choice for yachts returning from the Caribbean, preparing for charter, racing and cruising throughout Europe. The facilities at STP are some of the best in the world, incorporating the latest technology with the quality and experience of specialist companies for repair, refit and maintenance.
The latest entry to confirm and a first time participant at SYC Palma is the 45m sloop Clan VIII, built by Perini Navi and launched in 2011. Captain Dave Evans and his wife Fiona will have the yacht beautifully prepared for her debut visit. Another new yacht for 2014 is the Nautor Swan 100 Munzuni, recently sold to a new owner by SYC sponsors Y.CO.
Racing will be managed by internationally renowned yacht club RCNP who will coordinate the J class fleet racing and the staggered start superyacht classes. All yachts will be fitted with Trac Trac GPS units so that racing can be viewed live on the internet. Additionally all yachts will carry Pantaenius Range Finder to help measure boat-to-boat distances. Pantaenius have been a long-standing sponsor and supporter of the Superyacht Cup Palma and will host a race day, awarding Pantaenius Trophies to the winners of the superyacht classes on Thursday June 19th.
For those unfamiliar with Superyacht Racing we should explain that the reference to ‘staggered starts’ means that there are timed intervals between the start times of each yacht in the race, this is better known as ‘pursuit style’ racing. These timings are set by the race handicapper after taking into account the upwind and downwind performance characteristics of each yacht, and applying other factors depending on the wind conditions on the day. Then the timings are adjusted on each day of the regatta depending on each day’s results, with the slowest yachts starting before the faster ones to even out the differences.
The classic J Class fleet, being all of the same basic design will have a start where they all cross the line at the same time, which makes for a very exciting visual spectacle.