This month, October 22–29, 2022, Malta, the crossroads of the Mediterranean, will host the 43rd Rolex Middle Sea Race, an iconic race, featuring some of the world’s premier mariners on the most high-tech vessels in the sea. From South Africa to the United States, from Chile to New Zealand, the appeal of the Rolex Middle Sea Race is unquestionably broad, with entries for over 100 yachts representing 25 nations. The race starts in Valletta’s Grand Harbour beneath the historic Fort St. Angelo. Participants will embark on the 606 nautical mile classic, traveling to the Eastern coast of Sicily, up towards the Strait of Messina, before heading North to the Aeolian Islands and the active volcano of Stromboli. Passing between Marettimo and Favignana the crews head South towards the island of Lampedusa, passing Pantelleria on the way back to Malta.
Originally stemming from a rivalry between two friends who were members of the Royal Malta Yacht Club, Paul and John Ripard, and British sailor residing in Malta, Jimmy White, the Rolex Middle Sea Race has grown tremendously since the first edition in 1968. Since then, Maltese yachts have won on nine occasions, most recently in 2020 and 2021, when the Podesta siblings secured back-to-back wins with Elusive II.