J / 99 Palinuro is the winner of the 2021 Riva Per Alli, a 220 mile test that in the past days has challenged the protagonists of the 2021 edition, with conditions ranging from an intense 20 to 25 knot breeze and matching sea state, followed by lighter conditions with strong gusts defined the event organised by the Nautical Riva Circle of Trajano.
At the helm of Palinuro, which was launched last year and powered by Doyle Sails Italy from inception, was Gianluca Lamaro, an Olympic champion in the Soling at the 1984 Los Angeles Games and Seoul 1988. Lamaro faces new competition from his sons Paolo, Francesco and Pietro and other young people with high hopes, such as Luca Pizzuto and Simone Mocchegiani.
Doyle Sails spoke with Gianluca Lamaro after his victory.
Q: Gianluca, how did you find the Riva Per Alli?
A: It was a challenging test: the weather conditions turned out very harsh from the beginning. The initial beat, faced with a medium-heavy wind and some gusts of the over 20 knots and the massive waves, meant we were the only yacht to the west of Ponza. The following legs, on the other hand, were very technical because of the changes in the intensity of the breeze: even here we distinguished ourselves by the uniqueness of the tactical choice, consisting of being the only ones navigating between Ponza and the ground. The option turned out to be a winner.
Q: Did you see any benefits to working with Doyle Sails and more generally your relationship with Marco Bruni?
A: Since the launch I have decided to focus on Doyle products because of the excellent relationship and esteem and friendship that I have with Dado Castelli and Marco Bruni. A choice I’m very satisfied with, because besides having access to the latest generation Doyle Sails technology, which already alone is worth so much, I had to count on the time, listening ability and problem solving of a group of professionals who are capable of delivering what I want: characters like Dario Motta, with whom I have exchanged many technical considerations. I was just talking about Doyle technology, the same applies to Stratis material. I have to admit that I never needed to question the soundness and durability once. Both the membrane and the flying sails never gave nods of suffering, keeping shape and reactivity under the most intense gusts as well as on the most significant wave sets.
Q: Apart from the European ORC, what are the plans for the 2021 season?
A: Our calendar involves participation in La Lunga Bolina, the European ORC, the Italian Absolutely Altura and the Italian Cup Italy. We’d then like to take part in a classic regatta, like the Giraglia Rolex Cup, and some double-handed regattas, a specialty that fascinates me very much.