Kontiki wins the RMYC Cruising Class
The Camilleri Marine Gozo Weekend Regatta was dominated by two J99s – Tom Ripard’s Calypso and Anton Calleja’s Lartista. The two boats were neck to neck during the five-race regatta and would have been an unbeaten record for Calypso, had it not been for Charles Cronin’s J92 Alecto pipping them to a win in the very last race.
The weekend event kicked off on Thursday morning, a public holiday, with a short race starting and finishing from Marsamxett. Race Officer Peter Dimech sent the fleet northbound towards the St. Paul’s Bay fish farm perimeter on a short 12 nautical mile course. What started as an uneventful and lacklustre start, with just 3-4 knots of wind, progressed into significantly fresher winds on the last five miles of the race. In the words of participant Charles Cronin, skipper of Alecto, “a thrilling conclusion to a somewhat frustrating race”.
Racing progressed on Friday afternoon when the fleet raced towards Mġarr Gozo. The start was a bit of a more exciting affair with Calypso charging out of the harbour followed by Lartista. Outside Tigne Point it was Kontiki (Ferdinand Grech), Maltese Falcon (Adrian Gauci Borda) and Alecto racing neck to neck with Alecto edging forward ahead. All racers arrived in Mgarr around 5pm in time for some relaxing time ahead of the next day’s races.
On Saturday, wind conditions reached approximately 18 knots, allowing for two races to take place. Race Officer Mark Napier sent the fleet around Comino, with Calypso and Kontiki winning their respective classes for the day. On Sunday, lighter winds saw the fleet leave Gozo earlier than planned. Whilst bets were on Calypso for an unbeaten run, it was Charles Cronin’s Alecto to provide the surprise of the day when slowly but surely, the J92 beat opposition from the two J99s to win the race.
All in all, it was Calypso’s weekend as it was declared overall IRC Winner of the Camilleri Marine Gozo Weekend Regatta.
“We had a fantastic weekend in Gozo on Calypso. Sun was out and sailing conditions were great! We finally had an opportunity for some close racing with the other J99 – Lartista which was a lot of fun!” enthused Tom Ripard, Calypso skipper. Echoing Ripard’s sentiments was Charles Cronin who remarked that Sunday’s race was perfect for his J92 Alecto. “a late start for Alecto did not deter our efforts to chase the two J99s, in what was a technically interesting race.”Alecto’s efforts saw them snatch a win on corrected time.
In the Cruisers Class, the chase between Gino Cutajar’s Kira and Fernando Grech’s KonTiki ensued with KonTiki emerging as the overall Class winner with just one point ahead of Kira.
“The Club’s close collaboration with Camilleri Marine goes a long way. The wonderful list of prizes, kindly given by Camilleri Marine was certainly an incentive for the boats taking part. We thank our friends at Camilleri Marine, for their ongoing support” remarked David Cremona, Commodore, Royal Malta Yacht Club.
The Club also thanked the volunteers contributing to this event – Georges Bonello Dupuis, Peter Dimech, Alana Meadows, and Mark Napier.
The next commitments on the RMYC Sailing Calendar are scheduled for Saturday 16th April when the RMYC Double Handed Race, followed by the highly anticipated Porto Turistico Marina di Ragusa Weekend Regatta on the 29th of April.
More information on the Club’s Sailing Calendar can be found at http://www.rmyc.org/event-type/races/