The port of Genoa is gearing itself up for the arrival of the Tall Ships that will be taking part in the Garibaldi Tall Ships Regatta with the sun shining and tourists already in attendance. Four Tall Ships have already arrived, Oosterschelde
, all from the Netherlands, and Maybe
from the UK.
Maybe was one of the 12 vessels that took part in the very first Tall Ships Race back in 1956 but it wasn't until last year that she came back to rejoin the racing fleet. Her skipper, Steve Swallow, is now keen to take part in as many races as possible and is doing all the Sail Training International events this year - the Garibaldi Tall Ships Regatta, the Historical Seas Tall Ships Regatta and then The Tall Ships Races in the summer, before returning to her original port of Hull.
Steve has kept Maybe in Mazagon in the south west of Spain for the winter, preparing her for the summer's regattas. He left Spain four weeks ago and took his time sailing via a number of ports, "just for the fun of it", before arriving in Genoa. On board with Steve is Miguel from Spain, who is well used to sailing in the temperamental Mediterranean sea and says you can never rely on weather forecasts as the winds change constantly.
Also on board is Louise Ruffell from the UK who took part in the Tall Ships Atlantic Challenge last year on board Jolie Brise and Europa before joining Pride of Baltimore, where she stayed as crew until September. This year she will be sailing with Maybe for the summer and is looking forward to the variety of ports, particularly those in the south.
More vessels are due to arrive in Genoa tomorrow with the festival starting on Thursday 8 April.
The Garibaldi Tall Ships Regatta is organised by Sail Training International and supported by the ports of Genoa and Trapani.