The Rolex Middle Sea Race is a 606 nautical mile long, anti-clockwise course originally started by a healthy dose of rivalry between members of the Royal Ocean Racing Club and the Royal Malta Yacht Club in 1968.
Set during the autumn months, the unpredictable weather demands that each sailor brings some serious commitment and tenacity with them to the start line. Previous years have seen gentle light winds setting out, only to be ending in thunderstorms, or having massive squalls wiping out half the competition. You just never know what you’re going to get.
The race itself starts from the Grand Harbour, beneath the Saluting Battery in Valletta, before heading north along the eastern coasts of Sicily. The infamous Mount Etna is usually visible on the fleets’ port side, then up towards the challenging Straits of Messina. From there it’s north to the Aeolian Islands and the second active volcano of the course, Stromboli, where the yachts turn west along the northern coast of Sicily, to the Egadi Islands. From here, it’s south towards the island of Lampedusa, then northeast on the final leg towards the South Comino Channel and the finish at Marsamxett Harbour.
Included in the price will be up to 4 days of pre-race training and prep and also the Coastal Race that starts bright and early in the morning on Wednesday.