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Watch: Sean Borg’s Jubatus establishes new Malta to Marzamemi Course Record at Marzamemi Race

Jubatus at the start of the International Yacht Paints Malta to Marzamemi race. Photo: RMYC/Alex Turnbull

Previous record set in 2009

Jubatus, skippered by Sean Borg etched their names in history during the International Yacht Paints Marzamemi Weekend when they smashed the Malta to Marzamemi race record. 

The new record now stands at 5 hours, 48 minutes, and 54 seconds.  The previous record was set by Strait Dealer in 2009 and stood at 6 hours 10 minutes 17 seconds.

The Royal Malta Yacht Club recently played host to an eagerly anticipated weekend at one of its beloved Sicilian haunts. The club welcomed a diverse fleet of racing and cruising vessels departing from Marsamxett Harbour for a challenging 60-nautical-mile journey to Marzamemi.

Among the fleet was Barong D, a majestic 110ft Wally yacht skippered by Andre Rossignaud. In contrast was Pep, a J92 skippered by Mark Camilleri, proving that size is no barrier to competitive spirit on the water.

Race Officer Jonathan Sammut divided the fleet into two Classes. The IRC Racers and IRC Cruisers were the first to leave, with the RMYC Cruisers fleet following them five minutes later. 

The race started with a fresh force 5 wind and a moderate swell from the northwest however wind started to shift as they progressed towards Sicily. Initially, wind speeds ranged from 15 knots however as the first boats started to reach Capo Passero the wind started to hit gusts of 30 knots. 

“Whilst the start was a perfect beam reach of 15 knots, the last hour before reaching Capo Passerso the wind was hitting gusts of 30 knots which are perfect conditions for Jubatus, however the last leg towards the finish was tough making it very difficult for the crew to control the boat. Nonetheless, we are thrilled at having beaten such a long-standing record,” Jubatus skipper Borg said.

Despite encountering strong weather, the overall conditions ensured that all the fleet arrived in Marzamemi in good time, albeit some enduring a bit of a beating along the way.

The Jubatus Crew at the event’s prize-giving event. Photo: RMYC/Kieran Borg

Even though the fleet was divided into racing and cruising classes, both categories were not short of competitive zeal.

Notably, in the RMYC Cruising Class, Code Zero stood out. Helmed by the father-and-son duo Matthew and Seb Miceli Demajo.  At just 11 years old, Seb was the youngest participant in the race.  In spite of his young age, Seb is an experienced Optimist Class sailor, who is set to represent Malta in the upcoming Optimist World Championships, while simultaneously honing his skills in keelboat racing.  Code Zero claimed line honours in this class only being pipped to first on corrected time by Paul Ellul’s Lucy X.

Forecasted with light conditions for the return leg, predictions hinted at the challenge ahead for boats to meet the cut-off time. Despite being the closest contenders to finish the race home,  Jubatus were unable to beat the wind, or lack of, gods and regrettably, all boats were forced to retire in the end.

Adrian Gauci Borda, Rear Commodore (Sailing) at the Royal Malta Yacht Club, noted, “Despite the weather preventing the fleet from completing the journey home, the leg to Marzamemi certainly compensated for it. Witnessing Jubatus establish a new course record was truly special – congratulations to the crew.”

During the weekend stay in Marzamemi, crews and friends enjoyed a wine tasting and a visit to an agriturismo where an impromptu tug of war between crews took place adding to the fun element of the weekend.

Following the event, a prize-giving evening was held at the Royal Malta Yacht Club in the presence of Mr Andrew Magri Overend, Group CEO of MacMed Group, and representatives of International Yacht Paints in Malta.

The next offshore sailing event hosted by the Royal Malta Yacht Club will be the Camilleri Marine Ragusa Regatta scheduled to take place between June 7-9.

International Yacht Paints Marzamemi Weekend Results

IRC Class 1

1st – Jubatus (Sean Borg)  – 1st Overall, 1st In Class, Race Record Holder


1st – Sail Away (Ray Schembri)

IRC Cruisers 

1st – Kon Tiki (Ferdinand Grech)

2nd – Dimm (Kevin Pisani Zammit)

RMYC Cruisers 

1st – Lucy X (Paul Ellul)

2nd – Code Zero (Matthew Miceli Demajo / Seb Miceli Demajo)

3rd – Cloud Spotter (John De Giorgio)

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