On the start-line of the Panerai Transat Classique 2019, January 8th, at Calero Marinas Marina Lanzarote, in Lanzarote, Canary Islands, a small fleet, competitive and representative of the yachting richness, will take off with a single goal, to cross the finish line victorious in front of Christophe Harbour, in St-Kitts.
Obviously, the impressive 50 metres long schooner Xarifa (J.M. Soper, 1927), with a sail surface of nearly 1400 Sq. m, seems destined to a victory to the line honours, but behind, its competitors will fight to the end in order to win this beautiful Trophee on corrected time.
For Stiren (O. Stephens, 1963), the aim will be to repeat his victory of 2008. Alex Pella the famous Spanish sailor, winner of la Route du Rhum 2014, being on board, should be a major asset to reach this goal.
Another exceptional sailor, Philippe Monnet, former record-breaker of the solo round the world back (against prevailing winds and tides), has engaged his own yacht, Lys (Stephens-Sangermani, 1955), and will embark a bunch of friends: highlanders and classic sailing lovers. His experience alongside with their enthusiasm should create an explosive cocktail.
The Italian ketch Coch y Bondhu (R. Paul & L. Giles, 1936), meaning red and black, in Gaelic, has recently experienced a large preparation with major improvement works and a very longue sail trip: 2400 nautical miles to reach Lanzarote which won’t stop the motivation of a crew of well-trained sailors.
The motivation of the crew of Hilaria (Sparkman & Stephens, 1953), will also be the strength of this elegant yawl – without any doubts, Olin Stephens favourite rigging – regular of Mediterranean regatta’s podiums.
For Aramis, (F. Maas, 1964), carrier of a lovely family sailing project, the Panerai Transat Classique will enable the crew to realize the dream of every sailor, to cross the Atlantic Ocean, what’s more, while racing. And we have every reason to believe that its “modern” spinnaker, used by Eric Tabarly, will demonstrate that classics were innovative at the time.
With similar size and launch year, Bryell (F. Maas, 1968) et Glen Maël (Sparkman & Stephens, 1973) won’t stop proving that David, willing to make every sacrifice for this race, do not fear Goliath. With a firm grip on their sheets, they will give it their all.
Finally, Eilean (W. Fife III & R. Balderton Fife, 1936), ambassador sailboat of the Italian high-end watchmaker Panerai, has not engaged the race only to decorate the fleet, and the golden dragon engraved on the stem will fire up and give it his all.
The race is about to be spectacular and intense. Let the best win, in a beautiful spirit respect and share, so precious to the classic boat crews.