After three days of picture-perfect sailing Nilaya (Class A), Freya (Class B) and Moonbird (Class C) were crowned winners in their respective divisions at the Loro Piana Caribbean Superyacht Regatta & Rendezvous 2014.
Hosted by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) and sailed March 21-22 in Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands, the regatta brought together some of the world’s most spectacular superyachts.
Second place in Division A went to the J-Class Rainbow, on equal points with the 50m Fitzroy sloop Ohana in third. Division B runner up was the 57.5m ketch Twizzle ahead of the 55m Vitters ketch Marie. Division C silverware went to the 31m Dubois-designed sloop Sarafin, just one point behind the winner Moonbird, while the 27.4m Tempus Fugit, built by Arkin Pruva, took third place. The Boat International Media Trophy for the event went to the 34m Nilaya, designed by Reichel-Pugh and built by Baltic Yachts.
On the final day, the YCCS race committee set a custom course which took the fleet west from the start off Necker Island to round the Dog Islands to starboard before heading further westward and rounding back to Necker and the finish.
Rainbow, chartered by Pier Luigi Loro Piana and with Francesco de Angelis and Brad Butterworth on board, was victorious in Division A. Nilaya claimed second place leaving her with an impressive 1-1-2 scoreline and overall victory.
Filip Balcaen of Nilaya said he was pleased with the result despite some difficulties in the final race: “It is a fantastic place to race, good winds, nice competition and incredible boats so we really enjoyed it although today we had a bad race. We had a big problem at the upwind mark, so downwind we were not able to hoist our code zero. Anyway the good thing was we only lost three minutes and in the end we came second, which is not that bad and we won the whole regatta in our class.”
In Division B the Frers-designed Swan 90 Freya took her second bullet and notched up an equally impressive 1-2-1 scoreline. Meanwhile Twizzle claimed second place and second overall.
Owner Don Macpherson was thrilled with Freya’s win. “One year ago we were here and we came in last! Over this past year we have worked very hard and for us to come in first today was just so rewarding, we’re delighted. The crew has really pulled together, we’ve kept the same core guys and I take my hat off to our tactician Mike Toppa who has been a great help.”
The 37m Fitzroy Yachts sloop Moonbird, with designer Ed Dubois on board, also claimed her second bullet on the final day, sealing the fate of the 31m Sarafin which placed second in the race and the division overall.
“My first reaction is to thank everyone for organizing such a beautiful regatta and for getting together such an exceptional gathering of superyachts,” Moonbird’s owner said. “We had very friendly and super professional racing so I really enjoyed it, it was really fantastic. What we like here is the flat water, 15 to 20 knots, ideal for most of us.”
Prizes for the top three boats in each division were awarded by YCCS Commodore Riccardo Bonadeo; Pier Luigi Loro Piana; Roberto Kerkoc, Vice-President of the Board of Directors of YCCS, and Tony Harris of Boat International Media.
At the final prize giving ceremony YCCS Commodore Riccardo Bonadeo expressed his satisfaction at the week’s proceedings: “Each year we think this event simply cannot get any better, but I am happy to report that each year we are proved wrong! I feel honored to say that I have received a great number of compliments from owners and crew here on the docks. Excellent race organization, perfect sailing conditions and superb social events have made this an unforgettable week for everyone involved.”
Pier Luigi Loro Piana was equally happy: “We had a fantastic regatta, fantastic weather and great sea conditions, the best possible ones for racing. It’s a pleasure, as a sponsor, to see this event growing,” he said.
For full results, visit: www.yccsresults.com/lpcsr14/lpcsr results.htm