- Published on Tuesday, 17 July 2012 21:40
- Written by Josh Courter
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17-July-2012. The 15th edition of the Rolex Farr 40 World Championship will take place in Chicago, United States, from 17-20 September 2012.The pinnacle of the Farr 40 Class worldwide racing season, the Rolex Farr 40 Worlds is a contest between evenly matched 40-foot racing boats, helmed by their skilled and competitive amateur owners and guided by world-renowned tacticians. First run in 1998 and supported by Rolex since 2001, the competition is held in a different country each year, a measure of its international status. Exhilarating racing is guaranteed. Up to ten windward/leeward races will be contested over four days – short, fast and of the highest pedigree.The Farr 40 Class Rules require an amateur owner to helm or drive the boat, and allow the inclusion of up to four professional sailors among the usual 10-strong crew, the remainder being Corinthian competitors. The competing yachts are virtually identical, required to comply with the strict one design rules, ensuring the emphasis is focused on the team who sails best.
As a number of the owner/drivers are significant figures in business, the event provides a unique meeting of the corporate and sporting worlds. Compatibility between the exigent owner and driven tactician is essential as the triumphant crew is usually the one that gels most cohesively in high-pressure sailing conditions: a true test of team spirit.
Last year’s event, held in Sydney, Australia, witnessed four spectacular days of racing, with Guido Belgiorno Nettis’s Transfusion (AUS) narrowly beating the 2010 victors – Massimo Mezzaroma and Antonio Sodo Migliori’s Nerone (ITA) – to claim the 2011 Rolex Farr 40 World Championship title. Professional tacticians of the calibre of 2010 ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Tom Slingsby, Olympic medallists Tom King and John Kostecki, and three-time America’s Cup winner Grant Simmer all brought their expertise to the contest.
This year the event returns to the United States for the first time since 2008, when it was held in Miami. With three victories each, Vincenzo Onorato’s Mascalzone Latino (ITA) (2006, 2007 and 2008) and Jim Richardson’s Barking Mad (USA) (1998, 2004 and 2009) hold the record number of victories at the Worlds. Barking Mad and defending champion Transfusion are expected to take part in this year’s edition, joining a fleet of over 20 boats from seven countries.
The 2012 Rolex Farr 40 World Championship is organized by the Farr 40 Class Association in conjunction with the Chicago Yacht Club, based on the Lake Michigan shore. Success is easily measured: symbolized by the crew proudly clutching the coveted Rolex Farr 40 World Championship Trophy and the equally prized Rolex timepiece at the close of the week.