Simone Bianchetti, 35 year old skipper of 'Tiscali', who finished third in this 2002/2003 Around Alone, died on a boat on Saturday.
Simone Bianchetti, 35 year old skipper of ‘Tiscali’, who finished third in this 2002/2003 Around Alone, died on a boat in Savona, Italy in the early hours of Saturday morning after suffering what is believed to be a stroke. Robin Knox Johnston reports for Scuttlebutt Europe
His wife Inbar called for medical assistance and an ambulance arrived with minutes, however it was too late for the Italian sailor.
Bianchetti, who had over the last decade had become one of Italy’s most experienced offshore racers, had started his marine career in the Italian Navy. His first around the world entry was in the 1994 B.O.C. Challenge in the Open 50 ‘Town of Cervia’, but he suffered equipment failure in the second leg and was forced to retire. In 1995 he was the first Italian in the 6.5m Mini Transat race, finishing 10th. In 1996 he finished second in class in the Europe 1 Star event.
The Vendée Globe 2000/1 was Simone’s first major Open 60 race. The first Italian to complete this non-stop round the world race, Simone sailed ‘Aquarelle.com into 12th place overall completing his circumnavigation in 121 days.
He then went on to a third place in the Open 60 division of the 2002/2003 Around Alone race aboard ‘Tiscali’ — Andrea Francolini
“Simone was larger than life. He was an ebullient, extrovert who charmed all of us who were fortunate enough to know him. He was also a very fine racing sailor and seaman as his second position in Class 1 for the last leg of this years Around Alone showed. Difficulties with his boat prevented him from showing his true pace earlier in the event, but what we saw at the finish was a Simone who had sorted out his problems as was showing his real potential. He had so much more to offer, achievements to come, but sadly he has been taken from us before he was allowed to show the world his true capabilities. We mourn a good friend, the epitome of the “laughing fellow rover.”
Photo – James Robinson Taylor