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Maserati and Giovanni Soldini ready for their latest ocean challenge: the Cape2Rio crewed race from Cape Town to Rio de Janeiro, casting off January 4th

Cape2Rio

The 2014 racing programme of Giovanni Soldini and the VOR70 Maserati was presented today at the Yacht Club de Monaco, welcomed by the General Secretary Bernard d’Alessandri.

The Maserati team, skippered by Giovanni Soldini, is prepared and ready to go for the yacht’s latest ocean challenge. Having set a new record on the notoriously difficult Gold Rush Route between New York and San Francisco in 2013 (47 days and 42 minutes), the Italian yachtsman and his crew will tackle two high-profile ocean challenges aboard the VOR70 Maserati in 2014.

The first, the 14th edition of the Cape2Rio, gets underway on January 4th 2014. A 3,300-nautical mile dash from Table Bay, Cape Town (South Africa), to Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), it is the longest race between the two continents in the southern hemisphere.

Launched in 1971 to encourage South African sailors to attempt ocean passages, and organised by the Royal Cape Yacht Club, the Cape2Rio immediately attracted huge international interest because it re-traces the historic routes of legendary Portuguese navigators, such as Pedro Cabral who discovered Brazil 500 years ago when attempting to sail to the Indies. Over the decades, sailors of the calibre of Eric Tabarly and Robin Knox-Johnston have competed in the Cape2Rio.

Soldini will be joined aboard Maserati by a tried-and-tested international crew of nine: Italians Guido Broggi, Corrado Rossignoli and Michele Sighel, Boris Herrmann from Germany, Carlos Hernandez from Spain, Gwen Riou and Jacques Vincent from France, Martin Kirketerp from Denmark and, on his first outing with the yacht, Pierre Casiraghi who will be wearing the colours of the Yacht Club de Monaco.

Giovanni Soldini said, “I have been dreaming about participating in this historic race since I was a child. The crew is ready and very competitive. We also have two new entries: French Jacques Vincent and Danish Martin Kirketerp Ibsen”.

Pierre Casiraghi added, “It is a great honour to take part in a race that represents an amazing challenge. I’ve never raced with such an experienced team and I feel ready for the Cape2Rio race”.

The second challenge is taking place from May 2014, when Giovanni Soldini and the Maserati crew will be on stand-by in New York awaiting a weather window for a second attempt on the ambitious North Atlantic Speed Sailing Record from New York to Lizard Point.

The monohull record is currently held by Robert Miller’s Mari-Cha IV, a 140’ maxi schooner (double the size of Maserati) which completed the 2,925-mile passage in 6 days, 17 hours, 52 minutes and 39 seconds, at an average speed of 18.5 knots. Soldini and the Maserati crew’s previous attempt on the record was in 2012.

Updates with video footage, static photographs from the boat and a chart showing Maserati’s position can be found at www.maseratisoldini.it and on the following social networks: Facebook (Giovanni Soldini Pagina Ufficiale, over 26.600 friends), Twitter @giovannisoldini (over 121.000 followers) and Instagram @giosoldini where the crew will tweet and post images from on board.