Giovanni Soldini and Maserati prepare for attempt at Cadiz-San Salvador speed record

Thursday, 26 January 2012

A professional 8-man crew including American Brad Van Liew challenges the Atlantic Ocean
The first ambitious challenge at a speed record in the North Atlantic by Giovanni Soldini and Maserati was announced today in Milan. As from early February a crew of eight led by Soldini will be engaged in seeking to become the new record holder between Cadiz (Spain) and San Salvador (Bahamas) on board Maserati, which has been completely overhauled. Maserati is a 70-foot racing yacht optimized for extreme speed.
In addition to skipper Soldini, Maserati will be crewed by 7 capable yachtsmen with a past track record in open ocean-going regattas and in competitions such as the America's Cup.   German Boris Herrmann (navigator), American Brad Van Liew (watch leader) and Spaniard David Vera (watch leader) will make up a team completed by four Italians: Gabriele Olivo (trimmer), Guido Broggi (boat captain), Gerardo Siciliano (second bowman), and Corrado Rossignoli (first bowman).
The record for Cadiz-San Salvador run, 3884 miles long, is monitored by the World Sailing Speed Record Council, the international body that gives official status to the fastest sailing times along the historical routes once plied by clippers. In the past the record was set only by maxi trimarans. Maserati will attempt to be the first to establish the record for the monohull category. Two additional North Atlantic records that Soldini and crew will attempt to break in 2012 aboard Maserati include Miami-New York and New York-Lizard Point (UK).
"The challenge is a demanding one, given the length and the difficulty of the route," explains Soldini. "During the first part our concerns will be with the area of high pressure blocking our path near the Azores. During the second part the difficulties will be posed by fronts and depressions which, if too low, will slow the boat down. At the same time it's great to have a chance like this and I am delighted with the entire crew".
American Brad Van Liew and Soldini have a notable history together, having both competed in the Around Alone race of 1998-99, when extreme weather in the Southern Ocean forced Soldini to the rescue of a capsized fellow competitor (Isabelle Autissier) and Van Liew to a dismasting.
"It is exciting to be working with my old friend Giovanni," said Van Liew. "It is a wonderful collaborative effort and a fresh, new type of sailing for me. It takes me back to my crewed racing roots which is an exciting departure from my solo sailing competitions. I welcome the race against time."  

Backing for this challenge is provided by Maserati, the main partner in the endeavour, which gives its name to the boat. It is flanked by the Swiss bank BSI (Generali Group), and by Generali, which are co-sponsors.
The official suppliers for the undertaking are Vodafone Italia, in charge of the telecommunication services and of the website implementation, Murphy&Nye, the brand that will provide the sailing gear for the crew, Bulgari as Official Time Keeper, and Boero Bartolomeo S.p.A. providing paint and enamel for the hull.
On board Maserati are also Eataly, supplier in charge of the boat's galley, Beta Utensili providing all the professional sailboat hardware, Corderia Lancelin providing customised performance ropes, FPT Industrial for engine assistance, Jeppesen for cartography, B&G Navico providing assistance for the on board instruments, Picchiotti Shipyard in La Spezia where Maserati is based on ground and the Autorità Portuale di La Spezia where Maserati is based in the water.
This display of support and involvement by Maserati regarding this major Italian project in sport and technology, confirms its role as a world ambassador for that level of excellence for which Italy is known. Maserati gives zealous expression to that excellence every day in 65 countries worldwide through high-quality successful products such as Quattroporte, GranTurismo, and GranCabrio. The performance of these cars on the road match those of Giovanni Soldini and Maserati on water.
BSI and Generali  BSI, one of the most longstanding banks in Switzerland, specialises in private wealth management through high-level global management. BSI, which is fully controlled by the Generali Group, currently fields a presence on the major international financial markets, notably Europe, Asia, and Latin America.

Generali, a major international insurance group, operates in over 60 countries. It boasts a robust footprint in Europe, EEC Member States, Asia, and Latin America, and serves over 70 million customers. A European leader in the life insurance sector, the General Group manages assets of over € 400 billion.

Meaghan Van Liew

Last Updated ( Thursday, 26 January 2012 )