At the jubilee 50th edition of the world's largest regatta - the Barcolana in Trieste - besides the Boka Navy featuring in the ceremonial part of the program, Boka Bay will also be presented by two ships participating in the race. Among the more than 2100 boats registered so far is the sailing yacht of the Sailing Club Lahor from Kotor, Tutta Trieste II and the “Bokeljka“ sailing boat, whose main port is Rijeka in Croatia, though the crew comes from Boka.
The twelve centuries old Boka Navy Kotor was invited to celebrate in the great jubilee regatta with its traditional dance and participation into the ceremonial program with the Italian Navy. The Barcolana has never caused so much interest as this year.
The Barcolana is a historic international sailing regatta taking place every year in the Gulf of Trieste on the second Sunday of October. The Barcolana is one of the most crowded regattas in the world, and this year's edition already overcomes 2017's record in the number of participants – 2101. Thanks to its particular formula, the Barcolana is a unique event on the international sailing stage: at the same starting line, expert sailors and sailing lovers race side by side on boats of different sizes divided into several divisions according to their overall length.
The Barcolana was founded in 1969 thanks to the initiative of the yacht club Società Velica di Barcola e Grignano. It has always taken place on the second Sunday of October to end the season of the yacht club, and therefore its full name is the Barcolana Autumn Cup Regatta. During the first edition of the regatta, only 51 sailing boats from the yacht clubs of Trieste took part in the race. Year after year the Barcolana has become more and more popular attracting international crews and world-famous sailors.
Niko Vuksanovic from Tivat has lived in Rijeka for many years, where his SY “Bokeljka“, J92S type, is berthed. Along with Niko, his wife Petra and their son Marko, the crew of Bokeljska is made up of Ilija Belan from YC TriBelan Tivat, and Rino Tripović, also from Tivat, who lives in Italy. Just for the record - the “Bokeljka“ participates in all regattas in the Northern Adriatic, and at this year's edition of the famous Fiumanca in Rijeka, it won the second place in its class.
A great performance ship, the sailing yacht Tutta Trieste II has great ambition. Skipper Miloš Radonjić sailed with his team to Trieste two days ago. "The port of Trieste cannot easily get in with the ship," he exclaims excitedly. Even today and tomorrow, they expect training before the main event, which is the 50th Barcolana on Sunday at 10.30.
The race takes place on a 15-mile four-sided, fixed mark course. The starting line is between the Miramare Castle and the seat of the Società Velica di Barcola e Grignano - and for the first time in 2014, the finish line was defined in the waters just off Piazza Unità d'Italia, where it will also be this year.
“We have great ambitions. This jubilee, at the same time the largest Barcolana, has reported over 2,100 ships. The competition will be exceptionally strong. Even a great CQS from Australia is coming, carrying a trophy with some of the most demanding regattas on the planet. We will do our best, so we will see," says Radonjić.
Barcolana follows a whole series of smaller regattas that have been held since last Sunday. Tomorrow is a regatta training program, where the Tutta Trieste II will face power with Sunday's rivals, while part of the “Bokeljka“ crew, who will join a team from Italy, will perform at the old-timer regatta.
For “Bokeljska“, this will be the second performance in Trieste, says Ilija Belan, expressing the pleasure that Boka has representatives at a significant sea festival, such as the Barcolana in Trieste.
The Barcolana is not an event for sailors only, but it involves the whole city of Trieste, attracting tourists from abroad. Every year about 25,000 sailors take part in the race and more than 250,000 spectators watch the Barcolana from the Trieste seafront, known as the Riva, and from the Karst highland. Thanks to the particular conformation of the territory around the Gulf of Trieste, spectators can enjoy the race from numerous observation points as if sitting in a natural “sailing stadium”.