Velsheda and Svea set to race at The Superyacht Cup Palma

Velsheda and Svea set to race at The Superyacht Cup Palma


Velsheda and Svea set to race at The Superyacht Cup Palma



June 21, 2023

Image credit:

Sailing Energy/Super Yacht Cup

Two J Class yachts will race at the popular Superyacht Cup Palma over the coming days. Both Velsheda, which has just been relaunched after a long refit, and Svea will compete, racing in a mixed nine boat fleet under the ORC Superyacht rule. Both crews see the event as an opportunity to put in some useful race training in advance of the season’s pinnacle event, the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup, which takes place in Porto Cervo, Sardinia in early September.

Velsheda has been re-decked through the winter and has made some other updates. In total they estimate to have saved 1.5 tonnes of weight and now are running a deck chute retrieval system for the first time.

“The boat looks and feels complete glamour,” tactician Tom Dodson enthuses. “We have had a couple of days of good training with the full crew. Bear in mind we have not been near the boat in nine months, since the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup 2022, so it is good to be getting in a little bit of time together before Thursday. We are looking forwards to racing. Inevitably we will be mostly looking to Svea and see what we can do against them, but racing under the Superyacht rule is not what we are used to with a 40m exclusion zone and so on after the start. We are hoping for more wind than last year and are really looking to just set ourselves up well for the Maxi Worlds.”

The Velsheda afterguard remains the same as last year, with Dodson being supported by Grant Simmer as navigator and Andy Beadsworth as strategist.

Winners of The Superyacht Cup J Class title last year and the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup, Svea have already had a full week of training on the Bay of Palma and had some time lining up informally against Topaz.

“Obviously I think this is going to prove to be two boat racing against Velsheda but we are kind of hoping it won’t just be match racing all the time!” says Steve Hayles, Svea’s navigator. “With the Superyacht rule’s 40m exclusion zone and the fact it is not windward leeward courses, then this is very much a training regatta for us.”

Hayles adds, “We had a very good week of training, some line ups with Topaz and some long downwinds. Overall, it is good to feel how much we have ramped things up since last year. These boats are still incredible to sail. We come back to this after sailing the 52-footer offshore to Dartmouth and it is so, so different. It is amazing how you bring all these people together and it is all choreographed so carefully with such amazing human effort. I never lose sight of how lucky we all are to sail these boats, and the more I do it the more I am interested in their history and heritage. We have changed a few things, reconfigured slightly to try and potentially see what we can gain under the (JCA) rule but overall, I think all the boats are tending to come together.”

The Superyacht Cup fleet will be based out of the RCNP and racing takes place Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

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