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Watch: Karl Miggiani establishes national sailing record in challenging conditions

Karl Miggiani in action during the Round Malta Race on Sunday. Photo:

Malta Young Sailors’ Club on Sunday hosted a windsurfing Round Malta Race, which was the final qualifying event for the forthcoming Foiling 100 event where sailors will be crossing over from St Paul’s Bay to Ragusa.

Five sailors – Jean Paul Fleri Soler, Karl Miggiani, Shaun Miggiani, Seb Ripard and Tom Zammit Tabona, started off the Round Malta race at 9:40am, departing on a southbound, clockwise course around Malta. 

Sailing conditions for the day were tough with the windsurfers encountering ever-changing conditions throughout their endeavour.

With waves ranging from 0m to 2.5m and wind speeds fluctuating between 30 and five knots, these conditions saw the fleet flying as well as stalling temporarily. 

Karl Miggiani led the way for most of the course, with Jean Paul Fleri Soler – winner of the first Malta-Sicily Windsurf race back in 1984, hot on Miggiani’s heels.

As Miggiani and Fleri Soler forged ahead, the adverse weather conditions hindered the remaining sailors’ progress with Zammit Tabona retiring close to Benghajsa.

Shaun Miggiani and Ripard suffered a similar fate which caused them to retire close to Armier when the wind died down completely with no hope of making it back to St Paul’s Bay.  

Reflecting on the grueling experience, Miggiani said: “The 75km stretch proved to be a challenging course, testing not only our physical fitness but also our mental resilience due to the unpredictable shifts in conditions we faced.

“Naturally, the satisfaction of not only completing the course but also setting a new record is immeasurable.”

The new course record now stands at three hours, 46 minutes and five seconds. 

The previous record, established in 1995 by Carmelo Abela was five hours and 21 minutes.

To put things into perspective, the round Malta sailing record – established by Lee Satariano’s Artie III in 2019, stands at just four hours and 44 minutes.

The Malta Young Sailors’ Club is now gearing up for the Foiling 100 event, which is scheduled to take place between May 16 and 19 and will consist of a 100km race from St Paul’s Bay to Ragusa in Sicily.

In a statement, the Malta Young Sailors expressed their gratitude towards the generous support of sponsors and volunteers including Yachting Malta, Casamigos, courtesy of M. Demajo Wines & Spirit Ltd., and Visit Malta. 

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