Germany’s Dieter Schön and the crew of Momo claimed the 2017 Rolex Maxi 72 World Championship held off Porto Cervo. The event, run in conjunction with the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup, was the closest yet, both events organised by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, this year celebrating its 50th anniversary, and the International Maxi Association, the body sanctioned by World Sailing to represent the Maxi classes.
Of this year’s Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup, International Maxi Association President Thomas Bscher said:
“It has been a fabulous week with very good conditions – strong winds, no swell, no big waves. There is a little room for improve on the organisation side and we are trying to support the officials, because we want people to come back and we want to increase the number of boats.”
Prizes were awarded by YCCS Commodore Riccardo Bonadeo, President of Rolex Italy Gian Riccardo Marini, IMA President Thomas Bscher and His Highness the Aga Khan and Princess Zahra Aga Khan. In addition to the class winners the Commodore Alberini Perpetual Trophy was awarded to Will Apold, owner of Sorceress. The top scoring IMA members were: Maxi: Rambler (George David), Supermaxi: Nilaya (Filip Balcaen), Wally: Magic Carpet³ (Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones) and Mini Maxi: H2O (Riccardo De Michele).
The 2017 Maxi 72 Overall trophy went to Dieter Schön’s Momo.
“We feel really good. We are happy and proud to win here finally,” said Schön. “After last season we improved a lot of details in our boat and as a team – very small things multiply to make you quicker.”
The International Maxi Association (IMA) represents the owners of Maxi yachts from all over the world. Recognised in 2010 as the World Sailing international class of Maxi yachts, the IMA is uniquely entitled to organise officially-sanctioned World championships for Maxi yachts. The IMA now has 70 members from all over the world, and more than a dozen honorary members including Gianfranco Alberini, who for more than 30 years was Secretary General of the IMA up until his death in June 2013. The current President of the IMA is Thomas Bscher, owner of the Wally 107 Open Season. Secretary General is Andrew McIrvine, also Admiral of the Royal Ocean Racing Club.
The IMA is registered in Geneva, has a base in Porto Cervo and an office in the UK, for rating and technical matters. With two affiliated classes (Maxi 72s, and, since 2017, the J Class) and one associated class (Wally Class), the IMA’s remit is to “guide and structure maxi yacht racing. The IMA rule defines and categorises maxi yachts: it aims to embrace all maxi yachts and as such follows, instigates and encourages developments that are deemed to have a positive effect on the construction and racing of maxi-sized boats.”