With 23 entries competing over three days, the world’s first electric-boat regatta took place from May 29 to June 5 in Venice, Italy, as part of the Venice Boat Show. The weekend started with a parade of electrically powered boats from refitted Venice classics to the latest high-tech raceboats as the fleet idled from the Arsenale, along the Grand Canal out into the San Marco Basin and then back to their starting point.
The competition began June 3 with the slalom competition taking place near the Arsenale Docks. Each of the eight entries zigged and zagged through buoys in timed there and back runs. The E’dyn 1120 took the first victory of the weekend followed by Madonna della Madia II and Bellmarine.
E’dyn is short for Electric Dynamic Nautics, a brand by Slovenian company Podkriznik that has 30 years in electric propulsion technology. The 1120 hull was developed with German design firm Kaiserboote. Madonna della Madia II is a traditional wide-beam design made of recycled wood and powered by a motor from AS Labruna. The aluminum Bellmarine is powered by Transfluid equipment.
Dancing On The Water
Next came a new sport patterned after gymnastics and figure-skating as the operators “danced” their boat to music. The event is designed to show off the maneuverability of the boats and the skills of the captains. The boats performed to songs chosen by the crew and included tunes by the Beach Boys and Queen, as well as classics by Venice’s Vivaldi. Points were awarded technical difficulty, music and originality.
E’dyn 1120 took first followed by Madonna della Madia II but some were surprised by the agility of the third-place finisher Anvera, which is a 9.9-meter V-bottom with a 250-kW motor that is designed for high straight-line speeds. It didn’t hurt that longtime powerboat racer Luca Ferrari was at the controls.
In the afternoon, Anvera, which was built by Anvera E Lab, took top honors in the 500-meter Sprint event from canal Santo Spirito to San Clemente Island and back. The Italian Motorboat Federation timed all the boats and Anvera hit 41 kmh (25 mph), taking top honors. She was followed by Serene, the entry from Vita Yachts, that ran 33 kmh (20 mph). Third place went to a name that has been celebrated for boat design since 1771, Ernesto Riva.
Finally, on June 3, the finale was the Autonomy/Endurance race, which was called (90 Minuti di Giudecca, a 90-minute trial in which seven boats raced to see who could complete the most 2.5-km laps in 1.5 hours. Anvera, Riva and E’Dyn 1120 took the top three spots.
After the points were tallied for all four disciplines, the overall winner was E’dyn, which took home the “Coppa del Salone Nautica Venezia.” Second overall went to the Anvera team, followed by Madonna della Madia II.
Two other awards were given out. Electricat Big Six inflatables won the Solar Boat category, while Casanova from the San Pietro di Castello Motonautico Shipyard took top honors in the hybrid category.