First-time challengers and old rivals are gathering this week for Ibiza JoySail, with the second edition of the Balearic festival of superyacht sailing again poised to provide thrilling racing and exhilarating events ashore.
One of the final superyacht regattas of the 2022 Mediterranean sailing season, Ibiza JoySail offers a friendly four-day combination of offshore and inshore racing starting from Palma, Mallorca, on Thursday 22 September, before taking in the spectacular surroundings of Ibiza and Formentera until Sunday.
No fewer than thirteen diverse and eye-catching superyachts have assembled – almost triple the number at last year’s inaugural event – with all now making final preparations at the STP Palma yard, a co-organiser of Ibiza JoySail.
Though only in its second year the regatta has already been included in the international calendar of the SuperYacht Racing Association (SYRA), and made the list of Nautor Swan’s recommended regattas.
First up for the fleet is the 70-mile offshore race from Palma to Ibiza which, weather permitting, will offer something a bit different in superyacht sailing according to Ibiza JoySail Race Director Nacho Postigo.
“In a perfect scenario we will have a long downwind race which will be great fun, and which is not something you get very often in superyacht racing, so it is quite unique,” he said.
The opening offshore race will start off Palma and finish near Marina Ibiza, the regatta’s other co-organiser, and be scored on handicap as part of the overall results.
However, Postigo highlighted the fact that it will also include a new trophy – the Mallorca-Ibiza Perpetual Trophy – which will be awarded to boats which set a record time in their class between the lighthouses at Punta Cala Figuera off Mallorca, and Tagomago Island off Ibiza’s east coast.
“The Perpetual Trophy is like a race within a race,” said Postigo.”As for the record it is a blank page and is ready to be set this year. We wanted it to appeal to the owners of very different boats, so we have created different record classes which over the coming years will give all those taking part something to aim at.”
And he added:” I was talking to Matt Humphries, who is tactician on All Smoke and is an offshore sailor, and when I told him about the record race his eyes started shining – and he is on a very good boat for that. All Smoke is a very fast boat and the owner is very passionate about performance, so they may be the first name to be engraved on the trophy.”
In any event, the Reichel/Pugh designed SW-RP90 performance cruiser will face determined if friendly competition for the record from a trio of yachts returning to Ibiza JoySail after last year’s party – namely the Swan 80 Dark Horse, YD120 Bliss and defending regatta champion the Swan 115 Moat.
With the fleet divided into a number of classes, several other yachts will also be aiming to see their name engraved on the Perpetual Trophy. Among the largest are the 155′ giant sloop Hyperion and the elegant 152′ schooner Windrose of Amsterdam, while the Oyster 825 Champagne Hippy, the Warwick 95 Patea, and Swan 80 Sapma may also fancy their chances.
Last, and a long way from least, the all-carbon Y Yachts’ quartet of Miss Shell, Makai, Y Not and Bella II will be keen to show-off their lightweight, high-performance pedigree.
Win or lose, once finished the whole fleet will celebrating in Marina Ibiza with welcome drinks and enjoying the exclusive hospitality offered by the yachting and lifestyle destination.
Shoreside highlights – not forgetting the joy of Mediterranean sunsets – can be enjoyed in the Sailing Lounge of Marina Ibiza and the Roto restaurant, one of the island’s destination venues.
Emphasising its ‘family and friends’ ethos, Ibiza JoySail has swopped the more traditional owners’ dinner with a series of evenings for both owners and crews. Roto is the focus on Friday evening, with dinner on the Filin terrace in Marina Ibiza’s central square the centre of activity on Saturday.
That is part of the balance which makes Ibiza JoySail a special event, concludes Postigo: ‘From the very beginning Ibiza JoySail was intended to be a fun event at which people have a very good time.
“But we are sailors, and we are racers, so we are very careful and put a lot of attention to detail into the quality of the racing. So we want to have very good and fair racing on the water with interesting high-quality courses, and a very good time ashore – it happened last year and that is the spirit of the regatta.
“It is a quality that has perhaps been lost in some of the other superyacht regattas, which have become a little too serious with some people only interested in being there for winning and not having a really great time.”
And he added: “So Ibiza JoySail is for the fast racing boats, and also for those who just want to sail and share the joy of sailing with others and who don’t care too much about the results. There is room for both of them and we shall always make sure that room is there as they are both very important.”
Ibiza JoySail enjoys the support of the Ibiza Town Hall and the Consell de Ibiza with the aim of promoting brand ‘Ibiza’ nationally and internationally with events focused on quality tourism.