Ahead of Ibiza JoySail's third annual sailing regatta, set to take place from 28 September to 1 October 2023, event organisers have confirmed the entry of three J Class yachts: Svea, Topaz and Lionheart.
The trio bring the total number of competing yachts to 14 for the third edition of the Spanish regatta. "It is early days of course, but we have had significant interest from almost all of the boats who participated last year and who want to do it again, which is a great tribute to Ibiza JoySail,” said regatta director Nacho Postigo.
Of those already confirmed, returning competitors include the defending champion of the Perpetual Trophy and Performance classes, Nautor Swan's Swan 115 Moat (formerly Highland Fling 15), as well as two Swan 80 models, Dark Horse and Sapma. Others set to return include the Southern Wind Allsmoke and Bliss from Yachting Developments, while new entries will consist of the Swan 115 Jasi, Prevail from YYachts, a Dykstra 111 Aurelius and Southern Wind sailing yacht Aragon.
The Ibiza JoySail regatta has been rising in stature since its inception in 2021, evidenced by this year's J Class entries. On the decision to enter, project manager of Topaz, Tim Kröger, said: "First of all it is a good chance to race against our J-Class compatriots, and secondly it’s the challenge to participate in a fairly new event in a new area and attractive race waters. As a team, we are looking forward to well-organized races and a tempting venue promising good sport. We followed last year’s event which looked like a great success."
Similar to last year, the regatta will commence with the 48-nautical-mile Mallorca to Ibiza Race with competitors vying for the Mallorca-Ibiza Perpetual Trophy, won twice before by Nautor Swan's Moat.
However, the format of this year's opening race has changed so that weather conditions will no longer be a concern. Postigo explained: "We will use robotic racing marks for that, so if the conditions in the Bay of Palma are too light to start – and it was marginal for a time last year – the race committee will hoist the ‘follow me’ flag and start motoring towards Ibiza. If the wind gets up in the channel, as it did in 2022, then we will set a start line with the robotic marks and go racing. The race committee could also shorten the course in the same way."
The most important aspect of this year's regatta, which Postigo hopes to preserve, is that "the owners and crews have a good time, and it is not a struggle."
Due to the growth experienced over the last two iterations, Ibiza JoySail has decided to limit the number of participating boats in order to "maintain the essence, quality and spirit" of the event.