Carlo Borlenghi / Rolex /

Selene and Music come out on top

Blustery conditions in Virgin Gorda for the Rolex Swan Cup Caribbean with pics from Carlo Borlenghi

Saturday March 7th 2015, Author: James Boyd, Location: Virgin Islands

The second Rolex Swan Cup Caribbean concluded in style on Saturday following four excellent days of sailing in the British Virgin Islands.

The week saw consistent breeze upwards of 20 knots for the 21 strong fleet of Swans as they competed on Virgin Gorda’s renowned turquoise waters.

Having dominated proceedings from the very first race, Swan 80 Selene and James Blakemore’s Swan 53 Music were confirmed as the two Class winners - redemption for both crews after being denied on the final day of this event in 2013.

Jim Madden’s Stark Raving Mad began the week as the defending champion in the five-strong Class A (yachts measuring 18.29m and above). But the week’s heavier breeze favoured Stark Raving Mad’s larger rivals, notably Selene and Tom Siebel’s Odin, the fastest boat on the water.

Consistent sailing from day 1 proved key for Selene, winner of all four races. Her crew provided a master class in keeping things measured. "We had a lot of breeze which the boat clearly likes,” confirmed skipper Terry Halpin. “The secret of Selene is the fantastic team that we have been building up over the years. We’ve been able to identify the strengths among our crew and do manoeuvres on the boat really well. Last time was Stark Raving Mad’s, this year was ours."

Selene’s nearest rival, Odin, finished four points further back with defending champion Stark Raving Mad having to settle for third.

Music finished second in Class B (yachts measuring 18.28m and below) in 2013 losing out to the Swan 42 Arethusa on a light final day. James Blakemore’s all-South African crew began in determined fashion and performed flawlessly.

“The heavier conditions suited the boat and the boys sailed really well the whole week, we had no major mistakes or failures,” said a delighted Blakemore. “We’ve had two seconds in the Rolex Swan Cup before so with these winds this was our shot! It’s a fantastic place to sail and the event is so well organised. We’ll definitely be in Sardinia next year.”

Like Selene, Music posted a perfect scoreline, winning all four races. Her nearest rival on the water was Paolo Scerni’s Swan 42 Kora 6 which finished some six points behind.

Comprising sailors from different backgrounds and experiences, Blakemore’s crew selection has an admirable legacy aspect at its core. “The owner is establishing a platform for younger guys to come and sail,” explained Giles. “Part of our group will always include two guys under 25, who will do six or seven regattas as a stepping stone to something else.”

Nautor’s Swan Chairman Leonardo Ferragamo concluded: “This has been a wonderful event for everyone – the owners, the crews, their families and friends. There is something for everyone and the atmosphere is simply unique. The Rolex Swan Cup is always a showcase of passion and sportsmanship, and a testament to the joy of sailing."

This view was shared by YCCS Commodore Riccardo Bonadeo: “There is a good reason why the YCCS, Nautor’s Swan and Rolex have been collaborating for over 30 years and this week has embodied the spirit of collaboration, sportsmanship and camaraderie that has characterized our partnership from the beginning. This is only the second edition of the Rolex Swan Cup Caribbean but already this gentleman’s regatta has captured our hearts and become a firm fixture on our calendar, here’s to an even bigger and better event in 2017 in occasion of the Yacht Club’s 50th anniversary.”

At the final prizegiving held at the YCCS, Selene and Music were presented with the Rolex Swan Cup Caribbean Trophy and awarded Rolex timepieces for their excellence on the water.

2015 Rolex Swan Cup Caribbean Results

Class A

1. Selene (CAY), Selene Management LTD, 1- 1- 1- 1, 4
2. Odin (CAY), Tom Siebel, 2- 2- 2- 2, 8
3. Stark Raving Mad (USA), James C. Madden, 3- 3- 3- 3 ,12

Class B
1. Music (GBR), James Blakemore, 1- 1- 1- 1, 4
2. Kora 6 (USA), Paolo Scerni, 2- 4- 2- 2 10
3. Jeroboam CA Nova (ITA), Vittorio Codecasa 3- 3- 4- 3 13

Photos from Carlo Borlenghi / Rolex /


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