The 29th Rolex Middle Sea Race is done, culminating with the prize giving, held in La Valette Hall, built by the Knights of St John, and a venue worthy of the epic sea battles fought over the past week on the racecourse.
The overall victor in the struggle was the forty-foot Spirit of Ad Hoc from France – an appropriately sized yacht – given 2008 is the fortieth anniversary of the first ever race. Thierry Bouchard and his crew accepted the magnificent Rolex Middle Sea Race trophy and a Rolex Yacht Master chronometer with a deep sense of satisfaction for a job well done. ‘We truly enjoyed this race,’ said Bouchard. ‘It is an adventure and a test in every respect.’
The second mighty contest played out on the waters of the Tyrrhenian and Middle Seas was for Line Honours. There were a number of yachts in excess of sixty-five feet that crossed the start-line with half an eye on the prize for being first home. In the end it was three yachts that truly took up the challenge – the Mills 68 Alegre (GBR), Jim Swartz’s Moneypenny (USA) and Roger Sturgeon’s Rosebud/Team DYT (USA).
Dr. Austin Gatt, Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Communications encapsulated the importance of the Rolex Middle Sea Race to the Maltese sporting calendar and islands in general, saying simply, ‘you have made Malta proud.’
The 30th Rolex Middle Sea Race will start on Saturday, 17th October 2009.