As the sun rose on the California coastline, Maserati Multi70 and seasoned sailor Giovanni Soldini parted from familiar shores, their sights set on the monumental challenge of the 52nd Transpacific Yacht Race. This biennial tradition, fondly referred to as the “Transpac,” will test their mettle as they navigate the sprawling ocean expanse between Los Angeles and Honolulu, spanning approximately 2,225 miles.
The stakes are higher than ever, with this race serving as a groundbreaking sporting and technical examination for the team. What sets Maserati Multi70 apart this year is its revolutionary full electric system, a first for any racing multihull. The decision to electrify the trimaran was born out of a relentless pursuit of innovation and sustainability, presenting a unique challenge: how to enable complete autonomy without compromising performance. Solar panel surfaces have been upgraded, and an exceptionally light and dense battery developed, propelling this ambitious project into the limelight.
More than sixty boats gathered at the starting line off Point Fermin over a three-day staggered schedule. Maserati Multi70’s direct rivals are the American MOD 70s Argo, helmed by Jason Carroll with Brian Thompson navigating, and Orion, skippered by Justin Shaffer. Sharing this exhilarating journey with Giovanni Soldini is a proficient team consisting of Guido Broggi, Oliver Herrera Perez, Francesco Malingri, Francesco Pedol, Matteo Soldini, and Lucas Valenza-Troubat.
Navigating the winds effectively will be vital for a successful journey, as Giovanni Soldini explains, “We will have to sail a fairly high course, at risk of collisions with floating objects… from a technical point of view, it will definitely be a tough race for us because we will not be flying.” An unforeseen customs issue prevents the team from utilizing their best performing set of sails and flying foils, yet their spirit remains undeterred. As Soldini puts it, “But, as usual, we will sell our skin dearly!”
Navigating the Pacific trash vortex, a gargantuan cluster of marine debris, also known as the “plastic island,” presents another significant challenge. Maserati Multi70 is no stranger to this obstacle, having suffered damage in previous Transpac editions due to collisions with objects at sea. This, however, has not deterred their resolve.
The Transpacific Yacht Race, along with the Bermuda Race, is one of the world’s oldest offshore races. Its significance within the Pacific competitive events is unrivaled, and the course has become an iconic part of yachting lore. From the starting line at Pt. Fermin, Los Angeles, the fleet embarks on a voyage, leaving Catalina Island on the left, grappling with headwinds before finally reaching the finish line at Diamond Head, Honolulu, Hawaii.
As the Maserati Multi70 takes on this monumental challenge, the world watches with bated breath. With their innovative approach and unyielding spirit, they bring a spark of electricity to this historic race, promising a journey that will undeniably be a spectacle worth following.
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