Otra Vez will fly the flag for Malta at the prestigious Giraglia Rolex Cup for the second consecutive year. The week-long event, now in its 61st edition, starts today with a race from Sanremo to Saint-Tropez.

Skippers Aaron and Edward Gatt Floridia have taken a nine-man crew to the Giraglia Rolex Cup which is largely the same as last year. The crew has been training throughout the year for the two annual highlights – the Giraglia Rolex Cup and the Rolex Middle Sea Race in October.

There will be three days of inshore racing in Saint Tropez before the main event on Wednesday – the 243-nautical mile offshore race from Saint Tropez towards Iles d’Hyeres, round the Giraglia off northern Corsica, and then on to the finish in Genoa.

“We did well last year,” Otra Vez’s Sean Arrigo said.

“We placed 15th and 19th in the inshore races. Our overall result in the offshore race – 34th – was great considering that all the leading boats were larger performance yachts.

“The fleet ranges from 30-foot cruisers and racers to the Grand Prix boats, mini-maxis and 100-foot maxis. We are hoping for better results if the conditions favour the smaller boats.”

Otra Vez, a J-122, has raced in most of the local events organised by the Royal Malta Yacht Club, achieving good results.

The Giraglia Rolex Cup will be a different setting altogether as there will be 200 boats on the start line and featuring renowned professional sailors involved in the top campaigns.

The Giraglia Rolex Cup is organised by the Yacht Club Italiano in conjunction with the Societe Nautique de Saint-Tropez.

Rolex became the title sponsor in 1998.

Last year’s overall winner was Switzerland’s TP52 Near Miss.

Otra Vez is grateful to Timberland and Visit Malta for their support for a second year.