Tartaruga wins the Giraglia Race by 57 seconds

TARTARUGA, sailing away the Giraglia Rock

Marco Paolucci's Comet 45S, Tartaruga, has taken overall honours in the Giraglia Race 2008, concluding this year's week-long Giraglia Rolex Cup.

The 45-footer completed the 243-mile course in 31 hours, 43 minutes, 27 seconds. Tartaruga won a very close three-way battle on ORC corrected time, beating a Canard 41, Aurora, by just 57 seconds, and third-placed First 44.7 Argo by 2 minutes 13 seconds.

Tartaruga wins the title of overall honour due to the fact that more boats were entered in the 88-strong ORC division than the 82 registered in IRC. In the IRC fleet Fissa, an A-40 RC entered by Ettore Yachting, took first place by more than 50 minutes on corrected time ahead of Vinicio Petracchi's Cookson 12M, High Five.

Yacht Club Italiano

Earlier in the week the fleet had competed in three days of inshore racing in the Gulf of St Tropez. With the inshore and offshore results combined, Enrico Scerni's Swan 42 Kora 4 emerged as overall winner of the Giraglia Rolex Cup.

Good wind on the final approaches to Genoa benefited the medium-sized boats this year, relegating the Maxis to the minor placings on handicap. However yesterday the 100-footer Alfa Romeo did at least take line honours and knocked more than four hours off the course record, which skipper Neville Crichton had set five years earlier with his previous Alfa Romeo, a 90-footer.

Tomorrow the prizegiving for the Giraglia Rolex Cup takes place at the Yacht Club Italiano, where the major prize winners will be awarded with Rolex timepieces.

This is the 56th edition of the Giraglia Race, a 243-mile marathon starting from St Tropez via the Giraglia Rock at the northern tip of Corsica to the finish in the Italian port of Genoa.

For more information about the Giraglia Rolex Cup including entry lists and results please visit www.yachtclubitaliano.it

ALFA ROMEO, off the Giraglia Rock towards the record

Giraglia Race - Overall Results

Winner Line Honours and new Course Record - Alfa Romeo (Neville Crichton)
Elapsed Time: 18 hours 3 minutes 15 seconds

Overall Results of 243-mile Giraglia Race (ORC corrected time)

1. Tartaruga - Marco Paolucci (ITA) - Comet 45s - 23:40:15
2. Aurora - Bonomo-Berruto (ITA) - Canard 41 - 23:41:12
3. Argo - Luciano Manfredi (ITA) - First 44.7 - 23:42:28

Overall Results of 243-mile Giraglia Race (IRC corrected time)

1. Fissa - Ettore Yachting (FRA) - A-40 RC - 13:59:52
2. High Five - Vinicio Petracchi (NZL) - Cookson 12M - 14:50:48
3. Tchin-Tchin - Jean Claude Bertrand (FRA) - A-35 - 15:00:40