14th Monaco Optimist Team Race

Turkey sweeps the board

10-14 January 2024


Sunday 14th January 2024 – Organised as part of the collective ‘Monaco, Capital of Advanced Yachting’ approach, the 14th Monaco Optimist Team Race (https://yacht-club-monaco.mc/evenements/monaco-optimist-team-race/) concluded with a fine example of the importance of racing rules.


With 72 sailors in 18 teams from 17 countries competing, the event put the spotlight on strategies that made the difference. Organised by Yacht Club de Monaco with support from Monaco Marine, FxPro, sailing gear supplier SLAM, the Erplast boatyard and Peace and Sport, this international regatta tests teams mastery of match racing rules where coordination and communication between team members are crucial to success.


“The Monaco Optimist Team Race is much more than a competition, it’s a celebration of camaraderie, discipline and surpassing yourself. It’s a unique opportunity for young sailors to develop their skills and make contacts with other young sailors from all over the world,” said YCM General Secretary Bernard d’Alessandri.



Undisputed champions

Rising above this intense tactical battle, the Turkish national team emerged as the indisputable victors, winning all their races. Pin-sharp manoeuvres combined with excellent strategy plus their sailing skills and understanding of the rules propelled them to the top. “It’s been a great experience to compete at this regatta. We are obviously delighted to win especially against teams of this level,” said their coach Alican Selcik. Joining them on the podium in second and third place were the Spanish and Croat teams respectively.


It’s not just results but team spirit that is at the heart of this competition creating a unique atmosphere on the water and ashore. “Their mentality throughout was outstanding. They can be as proud of themselves as I am,” said Yacht Club de Monaco team coach Margaux Meslin who congratulated them on their cohesion.  The Monegasques were Ludovica Bonelli, Alexandra Santelli, Océane Schroeder and 11-year-old Facundo Rubinelli. “He was the youngest contestant in this event and like all the others was a pro from start to finish,” continued the coach.


The team racing format will again be on show at the Yacht Club de Monaco which is organising the Optimist European Team Racing Championship (15-20 October 2024). Until then, one designs will continue to take centre stage in Monaco with Act 3 of the Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series (8-11 February) then the fourth and final Act coinciding with the 40th Primo Cup – Trophée UBS (7-10 March 2024). Launched 1985 at the instigation of HSH Prince Albert II, this event has established itself as the season opener in the Mediterranean for the European one design elite.



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