Yacht Class n°22 (sept-oct-nov 2020)
Since 1967, the Costa Smeralda (Emerald Coast in Italian) in Sardinia hosts an eponymous yacht club. An institution with an international aura, which has a privileged relationship with the Yacht Club de Monaco.
Written by Aurore Teodoro – Photos : Rolex Borlenghi, Studio Martinez, Studio Borlenghi, YCCS & DR
This is the youngest of all the clubs twinned with Monaco, but certainly not the least dynamic. Created in May 1967 by H.H. the Aga Khan, Andrè Ardoin, Giuseppe Kerry Mentasti and Luigi Vietti as a non-profit sports association for fellow sailing enthusiasts and with a view to promoting related activities, the very active Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (ycss) had soon earned its stripes and joined the big league. Affiliated with the Italian Sailing Federation since 1968 and with the Italian Powerboat Federation since 1978, the club has since its inception aimed to organize international regattas and as early as 1972 the first edition of the Settimana delle Bocche was held. Then the following year, with the One Ton Cup, the Club was recognized as the main promoter of competitive offshore sailing in Italy and in the Mediterranean. The YCCS was also the one to launch the first Italian challenge for the America’s Cup in 1981. Today, the YCCS has lost none of its superb and is involved in many major international events, including world championships, for a wide range of classes (including the J, Wally, TP52, RC44, ClubSwan 50, Melges 32, J/70 and Maxi 72 classes). The YCCS also organises regattas in collaboration with top shipyards such as Nautor’s Swan, Perini Navi and Southern Wind.In addition to the sporting calendar, the YCCS also promotes activities relating to the YCCS Sailing School and the One Ocean Foundation, created in March 2018 from an environmental sustainability project launched in 2017 to mark the Club’s 50th anniversary.
Riccardo Bonadeo : “A specific experience with superyachts and maxi yachts”
Interview by Jean-Marc Moreno – Photos : Rolex Borlenghi, Studio Martinez, Studio Borlenghi, YCCS & All rights reserved
Riccardo Bonadeo perfectly remembers when he became a member of the YCCS. It was on August 18th 1978. That same year, he had won the edition of the Settimana delle Bocche regatta. Since 2008, he is the Commodore of this prestigious institution and its 700 members, representing 25 nationalities. People from various backgrounds, be they top international yachtsmen and women and key names from the world of business, or people who simply love the sea.
What are your key events?
The YCCS organises international sailing regattas, including world championships, for a wide range of boats and has specific experience with superyachts and maxi yachts. Among the prestigious classes that frequently race in the Costa Smeralda are the J Class, Wally Class, TP52, RC44, ClubSwan 50 and 36, Melges 32, J/70 and Maxi 72 classes. The YCCS also organises regattas in collaboration with top shipyards such as Nautor’s Swan, Perini Navi and Southern Wind.
The main events today are undoubtedly the ones we organise for superyachts, and above all our traditional September regattas with the support of our historic partner Rolex, such as the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup and the Rolex Swan Cup.
What is your best memory as Commodore?
I have so many great memories from my experience as YCCS Commodore, but also before that as CEO of the first Italian challenge for the America’s Cup in 1983 with Azzurra, and later managing the two VO60 boats sponsored by Amer Sports for Nautor’s campaign for the Volvo Ocean Race 2001-2002.
As Commodore I can proudly recall the winning comeback of Azzurra in November 2009 at the first Louis Vuitton Trophy regatta. The year 2011 saw the launch of the TP52 Azzurra, the sporting symbol of the YCCS, which has brought us great emotions and successes over the years, for which I thank the owners, our members the Roemmers. The last memory I’ll be carrying with me as the outgoing Commodore is the One Ocean Foundation, our environmental sustainability project born from the One Ocean Forum which the YCCS organized in 2017 on the occasion of its 50th anniversary. The principle of safeguarding the seas has become part of the DNA of the Club, blending perfectly with the sporting spirit that has always inspired us in our activities.
What would you consider to be the advantages of a twinning with the Yacht Club de Monaco?
Certainly the opportunity for our members to attend the respective facilities, enjoying the beautiful locations of the clubs throughout the year. The YCCS base offers members 24 suites, a bar, restaurant and panoramic swimming pool. In 2016 it was expanded with a presidential suite of 700 square metres. Our club also has the exclusive YCCS Wellness Center & Spa and the YCCS Sailing School.
How do these take concrete form?
Members of both clubs can take advantage of the services and facilities on offer by means of a letter of introduction. We have always seen this exchange and continuous interaction between clubs as an opportunity for enrichment. We always try to build on our reciprocity over and above the services that our members can enjoy in both clubs. We are pleased to support sporting events such as the Palermo – Porto Cervo – Montecarlo race. We are also happy that our Smeralda 888 Class, which celebrates its 25th birthday in 2020, has found a new home at the Yacht Club de Monaco and a new racing circuit – of which we host some legs. In this year in which the pandemic Covid-19 caused our activities to be halted, we actually started the sporting season off with the Coppa Europa Smeralda 888 event.