The 96th Bacardi Cup and Bacardi Invitational Regatta (BCIR), took place from March 5-11, 2023 and welcomed some 180 teams across six classes, making it a record line-up of boats and sailors.
The 96th Bacardi Cup for the Star Class kicked off from March 5, with the J/70, Melges 24, VX One, Melges 15 and 69F opened their three-day series on March 9.
There is nowhere quite like Miami to deliver glamour sailing and plenty of socials, with Bacardi hosting daily après-sail happy hours, entertainment and music.
“As always it is a pleasure and an honor for Bacardi to host sailors from around the world for our regatta,” said Eddie Cutillas, Bacardi USA. “We are thrilled to welcome over six hundred sailors from twenty-six countries to enjoy the racing, the Bacardi hospitality and the South Florida lifestyle.”
“Even world class regattas can’t just be about sailing. What makes the Bacardi Cup are the people – the sailors, the race committee, the volunteers – the Bacardi flair, the warm weather, crystal clear water, live music, party tempo – and being part of something so exceptional. All sailors dream of crossing the finishing line as champions in Miami. I hope all teams exceed their expectations this year,” concluded Cutillas.
Racing unfolded on Biscayne Bay supported on the water by Coral Reef Yacht Club, Shake a Leg Miami, Biscayne Bay Yacht Club, Coconut Grove Sailing Club and the US Sailing Center, who also provide shoreside facilities.
The regatta culminated with the Awards Ceremony on Saturday, March 11, with podium trophies, class prizes and special presentations. The EFG Rising Star Award celebrates up and coming young sailing talent, and the Quantum Sails Mover and Shaker Award honors an individual who goes beyond to support participation.
Up to nine races across three race days were scheduled for the J/70, Melges 24, VX One and Melges 15, with the 69F racing an open format. The foiling 69F featured six teams, with the open format meaning there is no limit on the number of races each day for the three women’s American Magic teams, AC40 team from Canada and two Flying Nikka teams from Italy.
Five races for the foiling 69F, with the newer teams finding their groove in the seven-boat fleet. CJ Perez, skipper on America Magic, said, “We had great foiling conditions and I feel like Magic did a really good job of homing in on our skills upwind. There was really big improvement there.”
Whilst Flying Nika 47 continue to crush the fleet and claim every win, Principal Race Officer Carol Ewing can see performance differences amongst the rest of the fleet compressing.
“All the teams have finally gelled to a point where the racing is a lot closer, and the competition is getting stiffer. They’re all ramping it up! There were some exciting races today.“
69F Provisional Results – Top 5 after Race 19
1. Flying Nika 47 – 324 pts
2. Flying Nika 74 – 265 pts
3. NYYC A Magic 1 – 255 pts
4. NYYC A Magic 2 – 260 pts
5. Team Happy – 265 pts
A super-efficient day on the water for the 69F fleet, with 5 races on the ‘L’ course format and flat water conditions. Another dominant day for Flying Nika 47, who again won every race with the winning combination of Enrico Zennaro/Federico Colaninno/Lorenzo Bressani controlling the seven-boat fleet.
“We are very happy, we have a lot of bullets,” said Zennaro
“We train a lot with the 69F because our goal is to go in the big boats, the 60 feet Flying Nika Maxi. It is very similar with the 69F,” added Bressani.
Behind the leaders, every team had a go at knocking out some good scores in the best day of racing so far.
69F Provisional Results – Top 5 after Race 24
1. Flying Nika 47 – 377.5 pts
2. Flying Nika 74 – 327 pts
3. NYYC A Magic 1 – 300 pts
4. NYYC A Magic 2 – 306 pts
5. Team Happy – 308.5 pts
Final Day – Day 3
Marginal planing conditions for the four 69F races meant the best teams would be those who transitioned the best between displacement mode and foiling mode.
Enrico Zennaro/Federico Colaninno/Lorenzo Bressani on Flying Nikka 47 let go of their hold on the race wins today, with America Magic 3 the only other team to score a bullet. But it was not enough to put them on the podium.
Speaking after their win, Paris Henken, who represented the USA in the 49erFX at the Rio 2016 Olympics, said, “It was kind of unexpected because we weren’t winning right off the start line. But stayed in some pressure that no-one else had and from there it was really easy to stay ahead because you were able to fleet manage a little better in the front.
“We were also able to not make so many mistakes. A lot of times these boats are super finicky when it comes to the rigging, so we were able to make sure everything was running smoothly and we ended up winning.”
69F Final Results – Top 5
1. Flying Nikka 47 – 427.5 pts
2. Flying Nikka 74 – 384 pts
3. NYYC A Magic 2 – 368 pts
Avant Garde, Gottifredi Maffioli, Harken, North Sails, Vela Mania, Vakaros, WaterSportMarks, QI Composites, Wilson/Marquinez, Fraglia Vela Malcesine.
ABOUT COMING SOLUTIONS.
Founded in 2018 in Verona (Italy), is the company that created and developed the 69F project. 69F is an integrated One-Design Boat, Race and Lifestyle format.
The 69F project is the result of the commitment and skills of athletes, engineers and communication entrepreneurs who believe in the future of sailing hydrofoil and its affirmation in the world of professional regattas as well as in the world of lifestyle and amateur sport.
The 69F team developed and built an innovative high-performance boat, they designed two captivating and sustainable competition formats and a sailing academy to train future young flying sailors and to entertain everyone, from pros to amateurs, with the aim of providing the ultimate foiling experience.
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