The Rolex Middle Sea Race: Distinction In Racing

By B. Roberts

Known as the Fastnet Race of the Mediterranean, The Rolex Middle Sea Race is an unmissable event. Over 600 nautical miles long, this year’s Rolex Middle Sea Race will set sail on Saturday 23rd October from Malta’s stunning Grand Harbour.

This year will see the 31st edition of the race since its inception in 1968, co-founded by the Royal Malta Yacht Club and the Royal Ocean Racing. Marking more than three decades of commitment to hosting a first class event for sailing enthusiasts, spectators, and admirers alike.

The prestigious race spans about a week, blessed with Malta’s unsurpassed scenery and giving competitors the opportunity to race close to a number of islands which mark the course.

Her fleet will head north along the eastern coasts of Sicily up towards the Straits of Messina. With Mt. Etna on the fleet’s port side, the race offers stunning and picturesque scenery for both competitors and spectators as billowing ashes and lava are often visible throughout the night.

Once the racers have passed the Straits, the course leads north to the Aeolian Islands and the active volcano of Stromboli, where the yachts turn west to the Egadi Islands. Passing between Marettimo and Favignan, the crews head south towards the island of Lampedusa leaving Panterlleria to port.

Once past Lampedusa the racers will turn north east on the final leg towards the South Comino Channel and the finish at Marsamxett Harbour. En route, the superyachts will take an amazing diversity of landscape and sea conditions, all of which combine to create the attraction and challenge of the race.

Racers and their yachts must undergo an unimaginable amount of rigorous preparation and graceful determination to face a world class event against the breath-taking backdrop of Malta, one of the world’s finest locations for sailing and sports events.

By B. Roberts