Superyacht Cup Palma Gets High Performance Boost

Posted: 24th October 2019 | Written by: Naomi Chadderton

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The 2020 edition of the Superyacht Cup Palma will deliver the added excitement of a new performance racing class, presenting superyacht owners with the option of testing their thoroughbred vessels in a classic racing format. Always looking to improve and enhance the experience of taking part in Europe’s longest-running superyacht regatta, organisers have introduced the class to provide a venue for the latest generation of high-speed and hi-tech sailing yachts.

The Superyacht Cup Performance Class will now join the ever-popular Original Superyacht Class and the Corinthian Spirit Superyacht Class – introduced in 2018 – at the 24th edition of The Superyacht Cup Palma from 17 to 20 June 2020. It will also feature a conventional fleet start and will race under the RRS on a separate course to superyachts in the two other classes. The innovative move has already struck a chord within the superyacht community, with Freya – the Frers-designed 27m Swan 90S – expressing a firm interest in signing up.

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“The new Performance Class is a great fit for a yacht like Freya,” said her captain Jonathan ‘Joph’ Carter. “She was built with speed and performance in mind and the owner, as well as the whole crew, look forward to showing what she is capable of in Palma.”

Early interest in the 2020 Superyacht Cup Palma has also come from the impressive 66.9m carbon superketch Hetairos, with the Dykstra/Reichel Pugh designed Baltic Yachts creation in line to make her first appearance at the Mallorca gathering. It’s not, however, a debut for her owner as the previous Hetairos – the 42m Bruce King designed Abeking & Rasmussen 1993 build – was last seen in 2012 and was the overall SYC winner in 2007, a particularly memorable year that saw 52 yachts gathered for the Millennium Cup edition.

“The Superyacht Cup Palma has got better and better over the past 23 years, and at every edition we listen to the owners, skippers and crews and then look for ways to improve on what we deliver,” said Event Director Kate Branagh. “It has always been a celebration of sailing in all its diversity, for yachts old and new, traditional and modern, and that vision remains at the heart of the event. The introduction of the Performance Class offers a bespoke category for the new generation of ultra-modern high-performance flyers, along with the excitement and challenge of a fleet start.”

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With the Original Superyacht Class on offer to the broad range of yachts that are an established presence on Palma Bay, and the Corinthian Class providing more relaxed non-spinnaker racing, the Performance Class means SYC Palma has something for everyone, according to regular participant Peter Holmberg.

“I’ve raced in Palma for many years on all kinds of boats and I know it works because the owners love sailing here,” said the US Virgin Islands yachtsman who helmed the J-Class Topaz to a class win in 2019.

“You now have a growing number of owners who have gone for fast, lightweight racer-cruisers, so for them to have their own high-performance class is a smart move – and it will also produce some great racing as well.”

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Registration is now open for The Superyacht Cup Palma 2020 which will again deliver its magical mix of a vibrant social scene at the Race Village in the heart of Palma, and the excitement of racing in ideal conditions out on the Bay of Palma.

Post-racing Happy Hour parties will feature once more, with the Owners’ Dinner at the St. Regis Mardavall Mallorca Resort – SYC’s Preferred Hotel Partner – the highlight of the event.

As well as competing for the overall Superyacht Cup – won in 2019 by the Javier Jaudenes designed Baltic Yacht built Win Win – owners, skippers and crews will also be in contention for the North Sails Boat of the Day Award, the inaugural presentation made back in June to SYC first-timer Huckleberry.

Images: Superyacht Cup

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