Palermo-Montecarlo – 21-26 August 2021

Wednesday 21st July 2021. Just over a month to go before the Palermo-Montecarlo. Organised by Circolo della Vela Sicilia, in partnership with Yacht Club de Monaco and Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, this has become one of the major classic offshore events on the Mediterranean circuit since it launched in 2005.

Many contenders for the title will be making their way for the start in the Gulf of Mondello to race across the 500 nautical miles that separate it from the Principality of Monaco. Among the favourites is Guido Miani from the Yacht Club de Monaco who alongside his son will be on the 100-ft (30m) Arca SGR, attempting to clinch a fourth title.

An intergenerational passion

For him, the Palermo-Montecarlo is a family affair, as his father Adalberto Miani, long-time head of the Sailing Commission at YCM, supported this event from the start alongside Angelo Randazzo, who initiated the project, working hard to help make it into the popular race it is today. As if passing on the baton, the meeting is now a must-do for his son Guido who has won it three times. In 2007, it was a victory in corrected time, a performance he repeated the following year propelling him into the title role of a race he was beginning to master. In 2013, he took line honours in crossing the finish first in Monaco to add another win to his record.

This year Guido Miani will be with his son as they leave the two cliffs that overlook the Gulf of Mondello behind them. It follows his superb line honours victory in the recent 68th Rolex Giraglia. No need to say more, Guido Miani aboard Arca SGR, a 30m racing machine, has all the cards in hand to make his summer a success.

A mixed field 

With around fifty boats already registered, the 16th edition looks set to be a quality vintage, and registrations remain open until a month before the start. “There is a strong desire to sail and race. And the Palermo-Montecarlo, with its magnificent course offers unparalleled immersion into the world of sailing in the middle of August,” says, Circolo della Vela Sicilia President Agostino Randazzo.

This year again, the fleet of Maxi yachts, multi-hulls and ORC/IRC boats will be heading towards the Strait of Bonifacio before skirting round Corsica up the west or east coast (tactician chooses) to the finish line in Monaco. For offshore amateurs and big names in sailing alike the course represents a unique challenge, enhanced by the stunning scenery they pass through and a high-level offshore course. Many have attempted it from Olympic sailors to America’s Cup stars and offshore specialists.

Starting Saturday 21st August at noon in the Gulf of Mondello, the race is a stage in the Italian Offshore Championship, organised by the Italian Sailing Federation, and a stage on the International Maxi Association’s Mediterranean Maxi Offshore Challenge. The record to beat, held since 2015 by the 100-ft Maxi Esimit Europa 2 is 47 hours 46 minutes 48 seconds. The winner in corrected time receives the Angelo Randazzo Trophy, while the first across the line in real time wins the Giuseppe Tasca d’Almerita Trophy.