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North Sails NEWS
38th COPA DEL REY
North Clients Return To Defend The Title On The Bay Of Palma
The 38th annual Copa del Rey MAPFRE, organized by the Real Club Náutico de Palma and held on the Bay of Palma, once again boasted a record number of entries in the ORC fleet. North clients took home trophies in six divisions as well as both top performer awards (won by Leonardo Ferragamo’s ClubSwan 50 Cuordileone, and Nacho Montes and Oscar Chaves’ DK 46 Estrella Damm).
Copa del Rey is a big deal for North Sails each year, and there is plenty of onshore support required to keep our sailors on the water and up to speed. Our Palma loft provides overnight service most nights, working diligently on sails for yachts anywhere between 30-60 ft. The pre-regatta days are some of the busiest, with 20-30 new sails coming from all over Europe to be inspected before delivery. There are roughly seven sail and service experts working for seven straight days, with five on the evening shift which can sometimes turn into the morning shift. Over the course of the event, North Sails worked with 37 different team inventories, and over 90 sails passed through the hands of our loft. We are proud to not only show our numbers on the race course and on the scoreboard, but also on land to support all regatta participants.
Estrella Damm’s skipper, North Expert Luis Martinez Doreste, says the team came into the event ready to defend their title from last year. “We trust each other to accomplish our assigned jobs and do them well. Combining a talented crew and the right boat for ORC 1 were key factors. Not to mention having the right rig setup, and perfect sails; it is the best combination we could ever achieve.”
Before Copa del Rey, the team had multiple training weekends together. “That gave us the time to improve in so many ways,” explains Luis. “We focused mainly on our boat speed and maneuvers, and it paid off.” This year, there were changes to the ORC fleet, giving it a new distribution system to divide the fleet into four classes, depending on boat length and speed benchmark. If anything, this worked in favor of Estrella. They knew they would be matched well with their arch-nemesis, Rats on Fire, a Swan 45 owned by Rafael Carbonell Pujol.
The breeze was light to medium early on, but by mid-week a mistral provided sporty conditions. Estrella Damm’s new 3Di RAW 780 mainsail and S2 symmetrical kite helped improve their speed over the course of last year. They also used a one-year old A1.5 spinnaker for light air. “Our new sails lived up to their promise,” says Luis, adding, “they made a huge impact on our boat speed and performance. The new main has more twist and downwind speed, and the rig tune gave us a more bendy mast. Also, I highly recommend the A 1.5 for this type of boat, especially dead downwind with a spinnaker pole in under 10 knots TWS.”
This year was Luis’ 7th Copa del Rey. Defending Estrella Damm’s ORC title and taking the overall Copa del Rey Trophy, he says, was the result of combining preparation and a great crew with the right equipment: “For us, it was the perfect mix.”