[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he second edition of the Rolex Swan Cup Caribbean drew to a close today with a fourth day of picture perfect sailing for the 21 participating yachts. Overall winners of the event, organized by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda and Nautor’s Swan in collaboration with Rolex, were Swan 80 Selene in Class A and Swan 53 Music in Class B. Both received Rolex timepieces and were awarded the Rolex Swan Cup Caribbean Trophy. Among the Class B boats sailing under CSA it was the Swan 53 Naia’a, owned by Bob and Kristin Beltrano, that claimed the top spot.

The entire week was characterized by brisk easterly winds of approximately 20 knots and today was no exception. Following a single start for all classes the larger Class A boats went on to complete a 25 nautical-mile course that brought them west to Great Camanoe Island and back to the finish off Necker Island while the Class B yachts rounded the Dog Islands for a 21-mile course. With no change in the prevailing conditions, all three group winners claimed bullets on corrected to time to extend leads they had secured from the start of the event.

Terry Halpin (USA), Skipper on board Selene put their success down to teamwork: “We had a lot of breeze which the boat clearly likes. While we didn’t sail perfectly, we seem to think that we left a little more time on the course than some of the other boats in our class. The secret of Selene is the fantastic team that we have been building up over the years. We’ve been able to identify the strengths among our crew and do manoeuvres on the boat really well.”

James Blakemore, owner of Music also underlined the importance of having a tight-knit crew: “The conditions suited the boat and the boys sailed really well the whole week, no major mistakes or failures. We had a very good preparation, good solid crew training. We’ve had two seconds in the Rolex Swan Cup before so with these winds this was our shot! It’s a fantastic place to sail and the event is so well organised. We’ll definitely be in Sardinia next year”.

YCCS Commodore Riccardo Bonadeo summed up the ethos of the regatta: “There is a good reason why YCCS, Nautor’s Swan and Rolex have been collaborating for over 30 years and this week has embodied the spirit of collaboration, sportsmanship and camaraderie that has characterized our partnership from the beginning. This is only the second edition of the Rolex Swan Cup Caribbean but already this gentleman’s regatta has captured our hearts and become a firm fixture on our calendar. Here’s to an even bigger and better event in 2017 in occasion of the Yacht Club’s 50th anniversary.”

Leonardo Ferragamo, Chairman of Nautor’s Swan echoed those sentiments: “This has been a wonderful event for everyone – the owners, the crews, their families and friends. There is something for everyone and the atmosphere is simply unique. The setting of the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda in Virgin Gorda is spectacular, and holds many similarities to the Club’s home base in Porto Cervo. The Rolex Swan Cup is always a showcase of passion and sportsmanship, and a testament to the joy of sailing – which is what Nautor’s Swan stands for.”

Owners and crews celebrated at the final prize giving on the YCCS lawn and enjoyed a final cocktail before reluctantly bidding each other farewell until the next appointment with the Rolex Swan Cup in Porto Cervo from 12 – 18 September 2016.

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