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Two Irish Beneteau Yachts Entered for Malta's Middle Sea Race

26th August 2013
Two Irish Beneteau Yachts Entered for Malta's Middle Sea Race

#middlesearace – Two Irish Beneteau designs, Paddy and Dermot Cronin's First 40.7 Encore (IRL8407) and Tony Tennyson/Des Kelliher's First 44.7 Gallileo (IRL 1944) from the National Yacht Club are already entered for the 34th edition of the Rolex Middle Sea Race, starting and finishing in Malta. The race is once again attracting yachts from all over the world to the Royal Malta Yacht Club writes Louay Habib. Less than two months before the start, yachts from 16 nations have already entered including Ireland. Cayman Islands, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Great Britain, Israel,, Italy, Malta, Netherlands, Russia, Switzerland, Turkey and the United States of America are also slated.

"Since the online entry system opened in January, 62 yachts have entered, which is more than the same time last year. 2012 was a record entry of 82 yachts and the club is hoping to achieve at least that number." confirmed Godwin Zammit, Commodore of the Royal Malta Yacht Club. "However, the satisfaction of our competitors is more important than their number. The Royal Malta Yacht Club is working tirelessly, making sure that our guests have a memorable visit to Malta."

Igor Simcic's powerful Canting Keel Maxi, Esimit Europa 2, will be back to defend last year's Line Honours win and will be hoping to be the first yacht to cross the line at the Royal Malta Yacht Club for an unprecedented fourth time in succession.

"The final challenge for the Esimit Sailing Team in 2013 sailing season is the Rolex Middle Sea Race." confirmed the European team's web site. "The race is recognized as one of the most picturesque races in the Mediterranean; the Strait of Messina, rounding the active volcano Stromboli, the Egadi Islands, Pantelleria and Lampedusa, with the finish in Malta's capital Valletta. Esimit Sailing Team crowned the 2012 sailing season with yet another brilliant success, and became only the second yacht in the history of the Rolex Middle Sea Race to take line honours three times in a row, for 2013 a new milestones can be set."

This year the entry for the Rolex Middle Sea Race already boasts a number of high profile performance yachts, including Alex Thompson's dazzling IMOCA 60, Hugo Boss and Andre Soriano's new head-turning British Mini Maxi, Alegre. Andres Soriano's previous yacht, also called Alegre, has won both Line Honours and the race overall.

Eight magnificent Swans are already entered, racing in a variety of classes, and also aspiring to win the prestigious Swan Challenge trophy, designed by Royal silversmith, Asprey. Once again, the Russian Sailing Federation is supporting the race and ten Russian yachts have already entered; the largest fleet from any single nation.

Andrew McIrvine, Admiral of the Royal Ocean Racing Club, will be competing with First 40, La Reponse. " I have only competed in the race once before but this will be the first time with my own boat." commented Andrew. "I am taking a break from work and will be cruising La Reponse in the Mediterranean before racing in the ARC to take part in the Caribbean season. Of all the Mediterranean races, the Rolex Middle Sea Race was top of my list. It is one of the most scenic offshore races anywhere in the world and also very challenging. This year, the Rolex Middle Sea Race is part of the Royal Ocean Racing Club's Season's Points Championship and taking part gives us a chance to secure second place in our class."

Malta has a seafaring tradition dating back hundreds of years and the Rolex Middle Sea Race is the most prestigious international sporting event in Malta. Winning the race, against world class international opposition, is every Maltese sailors dream. Lee Satariano and Christian Ripard's J/122, Artie RTFX finally won the race in 2011 and will be competing this year with an all Maltese crew. Lee Satariano describes how it feels to win the Rolex Middle Sea Race.

"It's a moment to enjoy - it is a dream come true. The fleet has grown bigger, the competition is tremendous. The Rolex Middle Sea Race is a beautiful track. The race is one you can never forget -every year something challenges you to go back out and enjoy the race."

Published in Offshore
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