The Transat CIC in Bona’s own words

Home / News / The Transat CIC in Bona’s own words

The Transat CIC in Bona’s own words

22 May 2024

In the end, this Transat CIC was more of an adventure than a regatta”: thus Alberto –just landed at One°15 Marina in Brooklyn, after 3,500 miles and over 12 days of sailing – described his undertaking.

One of the toughest tests I’ve ever taken”, thenadded the skipper, who crossed in fifth position the finish line of one of the most famous and challenging transoceanic regattas of the international sailing scene.

The Transat CIC had left Lorient (France) on April 28, with surprisingly mild weather conditions. Following the route established by the organisation, according to which the fleet should leave the small island of Le Groix on the left, the 48 participating boats – 13 Class40s, 33 IMOCAs and 2 vintage crafts – gave all spectators a wonderful show of colourful sails as they reached the open sea, where the pleasant weather conditions gave way to cold, waves and wind.

With the bows pointing North to exploit the winds of the higher latitudes as much as possible, the skippers entered the Gulf of Brittany where, after just 24 hours, they met the first of two lows which immediately put them to the test. Bona’s sporting outcome began to take shape already after the Irish coast: “I was sailing on a port tack when I heard the boat making a strange noise, different from usual. At first, I told myself that it must be an issue with the distribution of weights on the bow – perhaps something had moved – but then it became clear that the hull had a problem”.

Only once he arrived in New York did Alberto discover that the problem was actually a delamination of part of the hull which, after the second depression, affected his pace, even causing fear for the stability of the boat herself.

Despite the delamination, our skipper continued to sail towards New York, braving a wind shifting between strong (up to 40 knots) and calm; and then cold, with water at 5 degrees, fog and contrary currents. These were the actual opponents of this crossing, which Alberto ended in fifth position, crossing the finish line after 12 days, 4 hours, 35 minutes and 37 seconds. On Friday, May 10, at 6:05 pm (New York time), Bona crossed the finish line off the coast of the Big Apple and a few hours later, around 5:00 am local time, he finally landed in Brooklyn Bay.

It was really tough”, reiterated Alberto, “but getting to New York was wonderful. I went through one of the most intense lows I have ever experienced; everything was put to the test, including patience, determination and fortitude. As for the sporting result, I must admit that I was hoping for a better one, but sailing is like that. I didn’t set out to finish fifth, that’s clear, but I have to accept this result, especially in such a demanding regatta, which as a boy I never thought I’d be able to participate in, and with a latest generation Class40 at that”.

Once the race was over, Alberto and the shore team had to take the boat to Portland, Maine, for an unscheduled session of boatyard and repairs.

Latest news