The curtain has fallen on the 2016/2017 Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series organized from October to March by the Yacht Club de Monaco in collaboration with clothing supplier SLAM. The Monegasque race area lit up for the final Act which attracted 250 sailors on 70 boats. Various shades of blue were to be observed throughout the event as sun, spray and a steady westerly provided favourable conditions for a superb ending.
With a total of 70 races held from October for more than 300 sailors (14 nationalities) divided into J/70, Melges 20, Star, M32 and GC32 one-design classes, the Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series has established itself as a major event for many teams from eastern and northern Europe who establish their training base in the Principality to prepare for the upcoming season. An event that gives them all an opportunity to pit themselves against an international field.
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J/70: Ludovico Fassitelli top of his game
With a total of 69 international teams competing this winter the Principality has become a mecca for the J/70 class. A highly-motivated Monaco J/70 Class Association presided by Michel Boussard with 17 boats has proved a great asset in this fast-expanding fleet.
Barely a year since he first sailed a J/70, the Yacht Club de Monaco’s Ludovico Fassitelli (Junda-Banca del Sempione) proved he has the golden touch. Having started in 4th at the end of the first day, he went home with the Act 5 trophy in his pocket after three days and five races, two of which he won. The Monegasques managed to upset the order, overtaking Englishman Charles Thompson (Brutus) who was 2nd. Despite some tightly-fought duels on the downwind legs and round the marks, the Swiss on Jurmohad to be content with 3rd.
The ladies were not to be outdone, with Valeriya Kovalenko (Arttube) topping the annual overall ranking for the season ahead of the Brazilians on Manda Chuva. Ludovico Fassitelli (Junda) completed the podium in 3rd. “I am so happy with what has been accomplished with my crew. We learn something new at every regatta and continue to improve. Here’s to the next meeting.”
Melges 20: all change at the top
It was all change at the top for the 15 Melges 20s competing in the final Act. Alexandr Ezhkov (Pirogovo Sailing) who had been in the lead paid the price finishing 3rd, leaving his place to the Italian formation onMaolca led by Manfredi Vianini Tolomei. The Italians won three of the six races without being troubled by the competition. Dmitry Samokhin (Rocknrolla) finished 2nd just 5 points adrift of victory.
In the annual ranking for the season, Alexandr Ezhkov (Pirogovo Sailing) was smiling again as he topped the leader board after five Acts. The all-Russian podium was completed by Alexander Novoselov (Victor) and Vadim Yahinson (Leviathan). Valentin Zavadnikov (Synergy), the man behind the Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series and YCM member, was 4th for the season.
M32: the Italian class
Italian Riccardo Simoneschi (Italia Sailing Team) dominated from start to finish with an ease that left little room for the rest of the fleet to butt in. Despite his best efforts, the Swede Johnie Berntsson (Flux Team) had to be content with 2nd place, followed by Richard Davies (Section 16). Riccardo Simoneschi also won the 2016/2017 season trophy ahead of the circuit’s local Guido Miani (Team Neverland) from the YCM and Patrik Sturesson (Cape Crow Vikings).
Star: a game of musical chairs
The German Reinhard Schmidt (Econ Industries) was robbed of victory by Dutchman Thomas Allart (8334) on the last day, with another Swede, Tom Lofstedt (8517) in 3rd. The former Olympic class was competing in the third stage of their European winter circuit.
The Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series returns in six months’ time, with the Melges 20s opening the ball on 13-15 October 2017.
It’s just the start of the YCM’s sailing calendar as the Yacht Club de Monaco hosts the Olympic class 470 European Championship for the first time (6-13 May 2017) when all the international elite are expected from across the world including Israel and China.
Overall ranking for Act V of the Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series
J/70 (after 5 races)
1st: Ludovico Fassitelli (Junda), MON, 25 points
2nd: Charles Thompson (Brutus), GBR, 35 points
3rd: Stefan Seger (Jurmo), SUI, 36 points
Melges 20 (after 6 races)
1st: Manfredi Vianini Tolomei (Maolca), ITA, 25 points
2nd: Dmitry Samokhin (Rocknrolla), RUS, 30 points
3rd: Aleksander Ezhkov (Pirogovo sailing), RUS, 33 points
M32 (after 8 races)
1st: Riccardo Simoneschi (Italia Sailing Team), ITA, 18 points
2nd: Johnie Berntsson (FLUX Team), SWE, 20 points
3rd: Richard Davies (Section 16), SUI, 23 points
Star (after 4 races)
1st: Thomas Allart, NED, 9 points
2nd: Reinhard Schmidt, GER, 10 points
3rd: Tom Lofstedt, SWE, 13 points
Final overall ranking for the 2016/2017 Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series season
J/70 (after 21 races)
1st: Valeriya Kovalenko (Arttube), RUS, 107 points
2nd: Mario Garcia (Manda Chuva), BRA, 110 points
3rd: Ludovico Fassitelli (Junda), MON, 113 points
Melges 20 (after 27 races)
1st: Alexandr Ezhkov (Pirogovo Sailing), RUS, 56 points
2nd: Alexander Novoselov (Victor) RUS, 85 points
3rd: Vadim Yahinson(Leviathan), RUS, 128 points
M32 (after 25 races)
1st: Riccardo Simoneschi (Italia Sailing Team), ITA, 56 points
2nd: Guido Miani (Team Neverland), MON, 49 points
3rd: Patrik Sturesson (Cape Crow Vikings), SWE, 45 points