Competitors at the Maxi Rolex Cup enjoyed close racing in superb conditions for the second day of the Maxi Rolex Cup yesterday

With winds increasing from 5-11 knots and calmer seas than day one, 31 boats in three divisions competed in the Maxi Rolex Cup hosted by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda yesterday.

With a larger spectator fleet present, the racing, Wally and cruising divisions raced on a 23-mile course, with the racing division sailing two additional legs. Roy Disney’s Pyewacket, a MaxZ86, won the racing division for the second consecutive day in an ongoing battle with Wild Oats owned by Australia’s Robert Oatley. Argentina’s Alexia, owned by Alberto Roemmers, took first place in the Wally division with Tiketitan, the previous day’s winner, coming in third. In the cruising division, Mister A, owned by Italian Aldo Pagani, is leading pending final results.

“The racing up the first beat was very competitive between Pyewacket, Genuine Risk and Alfa Romeo,” said Gregg Hedrick, captain of Pyewacket. “We rounded first with Wild Oats close behind. We worked hard to maintain our lead and were successful.” Genuine Risk and Alfa Romeo were disqualified from the race for not sailing the proper course.

“We are pleased with second place, especially as we have had little time to practice,” noted Oatley. “Wild Oats just arrived on Sunday, which is when we dropped in the mast and put on the keel. Yesterday and today, our crew work was instrumental to our strong performance.

“However, Pyewacket’s length overall provides us with our one of our toughest challenges. There is a lot more racing ahead of us and, as we travelled a long way just for this regatta, we want to win.”

“Tactics were critical,” said Roemmers of Alexia. “Though we had the advantage of water ballast, positioning on the course was key to winning. We made the right decisions.”

The cruising division distinguishes itself from the other two divisions in that it is a mixture of classic boats known for their elegant lines and rich histories. These yachts not only include features that accommodate the most luxurious tastes, but also, utilize the latest in race technology such as the rotating winged mast as seen on Mister A.

“Mister A is very quick upwind, especially for her size, which was key to our victory today,” said Pagani. “Even though we were passed by the majority of the fleet on the reaching and downwind legs, we made up three to four minutes on the long beat to the finish.”