The format for the Rolex Capri Sailing Week/Volcano Race 2013 was presented on 13 November at the Circolo Ufficiali delle Forze Armate d'Italia in Rome, Italy.
Exclusively open to Maxi yachts, the event will mark the beginning of next year's Rolex Mediterranean sailing season and takes place from 18-24 May.
The contest will take place in both Gaeta, a seaport on the Italian mainland located halfway between Rome and Naples, and the majestic island of Capri.
Gaeta will host the start of racing on Saturday 18 May when the fleet depart for Capri from under the shadow of the town's famous Bourbon castle. Following their arrival in Capri, the Maxi yachts will tackle an inshore race series on 20 and 21 May.
The competition concludes with a challenging 300-nautical mile offshore race, previously held in 2011 and 2012 as the Rolex Volcano Race. The course will take the fleet of Maxis from Capri to the Aeolian Islands, a wild volcanic archipelago, north of Sicily. The departure for the offshore race is fixed for Wednesday 22 May with the final prizegiving in Capri scheduled for Friday 24 May.
The Rolex Capri Sailing Week/Volcano Race 2013 is organized through the close collaboration of the International Maxi Association, the Yacht Club Gaeta EVS and the Yacht Club Capri. The event marks the beginning of title sponsor Rolex's Mediterranean yachting season and maintains a decade-long tradition of the brand's involvement in an international sailing week in Capri.
The 2013 edition is reserved for Maxi yachts, measuring upwards of 18.29 metres/60-feet. Entrants will be divided into different classes - the Mini Maxis, the smallest group, measure from 18.29-24.08m, the Maxi class from 24.09m-30.5m and the Supermaxis, measuring upwards of 30.5m.
The 2013 programme has been adapted from the previous two editions of the Rolex Volcano Race, and comprises four distinct components. The opening ceremony will take place on Saturday 18 May in Gaeta, on Piazzale Caboto, before the fleet departs for Capri in the 'Trofeo Città di Gaeta', a race of approximately 100-nm. The second and third components comprise two days of inshore racing, held on the waters off Capri on 21 and 22 May.
The final part, the Volcano Race itself, a 300-nm journey around the Aeolian Islands, a UNESCO-protected volcanic archipelago, closes the week. "The name 'the Volcano Race' given to the longest part of the event has been a winning idea, a striking name for a challenging new race in the Tyrrhenian Sea. An offshore race helps measure teamwork and navigational strategy as well as the performance of the boats,"
commented Gianfranco Alberini, IMA Secretary General.
There is a great anticipation for the 2013 event, both in Gaeta and in Capri. Last year the 34m Belgian Supermaxi Nilaya was the first boat to cross the finish line in front of Capri, following a challenging race with demanding weather conditions. Overall victory on handicap went to British yacht Jethou (GBR), Sir Peter Ogden's Mini Maxi, and the third fastest boat on the water, behind the Wally Y3K from Germany, owned by IMA President Claus-Peter Offen.
Among the many famous names among the crews were Bouwe Bekking - a Volvo Ocean Race veteran and tactician on Nilaya - as well as America's Cup legend Brad Butterworth on Jethou and Italian Tiziano Nava on Marco Rodolfi's Berenice Bis.
The notice of race and the entry form are available at www.internationalmaxiassociation.com
During the event, live tracking will be available from the same site.