Sunday, June 12, 2016

GRIFFON KONG King of Italian J/24 Nationals

J/24s sailing off Italy (Marina di Carrara, Italy)- Thirty-six teams were treated to great racing from the 25th to 29th of May in the XXXVI J/24 Nationals in Italy.  Hosted by the Club Nautico Marina di Carrara in cooperation with the Italian J/24 Class and the Italian Sailing Federation (FIV), the teams enjoyed eight races over the three-day regatta.  Winning the Italian J/24 Nationals title was GRIFFON KONG owned by Marco Stefanoni and skippered by Francesco Bertone with crew of Michele Benvenuti, Mauro Benfatto and David Davi.  The German ROTOMAN team (owned by the German J/24 Class President- Jan-Marc Ulrich, and skippered by Tobias Feuerherdt) was the overall Open Regatta winner.

After three sunny days, the three-dozen crews (representing Italy, Germany & America) were prevented from sailing on the last day due to adverse weather, brutal sea conditions and heavy rain.

J/24 Italy winners"Despite the weather, we managed to complete eight fine races in the first part of the regatta,” explained Franco Minotti, the regatta chairman. “The championship was definitely a challenging race course because of the current and the wind shifts. The first two days, we chose to do races that were rather short because of the wind.  But, on the third day, we felt it appropriate to stretch the race course a bit.  I wish to extend, on behalf of the entire Committee, a big ‘Thank You’ to the organization of C.N. Marina di Carrara; great job setting buoys, and impeccable performance overall! A perfectly successful event, as I have also heard by all participants."

"On the first day we started with some difficulty, but then, after a good set-up we were able to reach the right speed, and we continued to maintain control of the Championship,” commented Stefanoni, crew aboard GRIFFON KONG.  “The weather conditions were quite difficult, especially in the first two days, when we were racing rather short courses. But, our helmsman is also very skilled in short-course tactics and was able to maneuver very well!”

GRIFFIN KONG closed the 36th National J/24 Championship third overall in the Open Division.  Winning the Open ranking was the top German team ROTOMAN skippered by Tobias Feuerherdt. In second position, it was the American crew of FURIO sailed by champion J/24 sailor from Seattle, Washington- Keith Whittemore.

Italian J/24 winnersRounding out the top five was a tie-breaker between BLACK LEATHER and TAKE IT EASY. On count-back, it was past Soling World Champion, the Hungarian Farkas Litkey sailing with owner Paul Cecamore from YC Nettuno that took fourth overall.  Fifth was TAKE IT EASY’s young skipper- Eugenia De Giacomo- and the young crew of Nicola Pitanti, Mark Brown, Matilde Pitanti and Lorenzo Cusimano

"We are a crew of friends, we were having fun, and that was our main goal," commented an excited Eugenia De Giacomo, skipper of TAKE IT EASY. "We were good at maintaining constant results throughout the regatta and this allowed us to close with this amazing result!”

Congratulations for the great success of the event and for the work by the CN Marina Organizing Committee of Carrara, the protest committee (chaired by Luigi Cuccotti with Sandro Gherarducci and Marco Cerri), the Race Committee (chaired by Franco Minotti with Stefano De Vito, Luigi D'Amico, Massolini Luigia, Luigi and Massimo Porchera Lunardini), and, finally, to the measurers Manuela Donati and Paul Luciani.  For more Italy J/24 Nationals sailing information