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Atonement and Improvement
Jochen Schuemann, Sebastien Col and the crew of Audi Sailing Team powered by ALL4One exorcised some of their early season ghosts today with a pair of solid, well earned third places to seize the overall lead of the 52 Series at the Region of Sardinia Trophy.
Their first regatta in Cascais with their new Vrolijk design, the more radical and powerful design of the two pairs of sister-ships, was plagued by early boat speed problems, but today the Franco-German team seemed to have improved, finishing the second day of racing with a lead of three points over Markus Wieser and the team on Container who dropped to second today.
The offshore breeze picked up slightly for the second race of the day and Quantum Racing's tactician Adrian Stead was able to stay on top of the big shift in wind direction which spread from the left side of the race track.
The split in the breeze was read smartly by Ross MacDonald on Bribon, allowing the Spanish boat a sudden jump to second at the second windward turn, sliding inside the jostling pack at the turning buoy, they were able to hold on to a useful second place.
After four races Audi Sailing Team powered by ALL4One lead the regatta by three points, while only four points separates second placed Container from sixth placed Bribon.
The Soto 40 class enjoyed excellent racing too in the brisk conditions which were slightly down the scale from yesterday's rumbustuous opener. The dominant Spanish Iberdrola team finished both races in the lead, although Britain's Tony Buckingham and the Ngoni crew lead through much of the second heat.
Region of Sardinia Trophy
Les Sables - Horta - Les Sables
During Leg 1 of the double-handed, Class40, Les Sables - Horta - Les Sables Race, Fournier and Criquioche took third place after just under eight days racing, crossing the finish line off Horta seven hours behind first place Yannick Bestaven and Christophe Bouvet with Aquarelle.com and three hours behind Stephane Le Diraison and Vincent Barnaud with Bureau Veritas. Light headwinds around the Azores in the closing stages produced a tactical minefield and numerous options to cross the barrier to the finish line created by São Jorge island.
Leg 2 of the race started on Wednesday 13th in light airs with the 12-boat, double-handed fleet tightly packed with Groupe Picoty sliding into the lead on Thursday afternoon as the breeze hovered around four knots and below. By Friday, fresh north-westerly breeze arrived with Groupe Picoty, Bureau Veritas and Aquarelle.com dominating the front of the fleet.
At 09:51 GMT on Tuesday morning, Fournier, Criquioche and Groupe Picoty crossed the Les Sables d'Olonne, Leg 2 finish line in first place after slightly under five days and 15 hours, chased across the finish line 14 minutes later by Le Diraison and Barnaud in second with Bureau Veritas. Almost five hours later, Leg 1 winners, Bestaven and Christophe Bouvet on Aquarelle.com took third and with the combined times of both legs, Aquarelle.com is overall first for the 2011 edition, beating Bureau Veritas by an astonishing 25 seconds during a total of 2,500 miles of racing. -- Oliver Dewar
Top ten final places*
* Standings on the event site do not match the text in this report. Whether that's due to jury decisions or an error in reporting is not clear at press time. There is a 25 second difference between 1st and 2nd the but the order is reversed from the article. We will have an update in Monday's issue.
Fourth Brit To Join The Start Line of the Solitare Du Figaro
Sharp (30) a graduate of the Artemis Offshore Academy spent the winter training in the Academy's Classe Figaro Beneteau yachts with his aim being to compete in this year's Solitaire du Figaro as the next step in his offshore sailing career. Only having recently managed to combine the assistance of the Academy, a generous private donation and the support of Glenfarclas Whisky, has he been to be able to confirm his place on the start line. Sharp secured the race entry fee when he won this year's Solo Basse Normandie Race, his second Figaro class win this season having also won the Solo Grande Motte race in the south of France in April.
The Solitaire du Figaro will start in Perros Guirec (FRA) and visits Caen (FRA), Dun Laoughaire (IRL) and Les Sables d'Olonne (FRA) before finishing on the 24th of August in Dieppe. Each leg will take approximately three days, and skippers often finish minutes, sometimes seconds, apart from each other due to the high intensity of the racing.
This will be the first time that Sharp competes in the Solitaire du Figaro (now it's 42 edition) which has once again attracted a star line up of line up of professional solo sailors.
Sharp still hopes to add additional sponsors to his campaign to complete his budget: "By combining my prize of an entry to this great race with the support of the Artemis Offshore Academy (a loan of new race sails), a generous private donation and the support of Glenfarclas, I've managed to clear the first hurdle that many solo sailors have to face; actually reaching the start line. I am still continuing to look for further backing to cover race expenses, and although this has eaten into my training programme this year, it is important to be able to look for partners to continue to a full racing programme in 2012" said Sharp.
Sharp's Figaro campaign was given a boost recently with the news that he had been listed as a nominee for Seahorse Magazine's sailor of the month. The monthly competition nominates two sailors it believes have excelled in the world of professional sailing, have your vote here: sailor.seahorsemagazine.com
Dubarry Lahinch - Hanging Ten In Style
Dubarry Lahinch - performance perfected.
Challenge Day' at the 2011 Panerai British Classic Regatta
Cowes, UK: Day 4 of the 2011 Panerai British Classic Regatta gave competitors a break from the normal fleet racing schedule in the form of 'Challenge Day' - an opportunity for any boat to challenge a larger competitor to a one-on-one match race. Given the atmosphere of friendly rivalry which typifies Classic regattas and the Panerai British Classic Regatta in particular, it came as no surprise that a total of 13 challenges were received by the deadline. More surprising perhaps was that several of the scheduled matches comprised three or more yachts. Weather conditions were once again less than ideal, but despite the promise of only the lightest of breezes and the certain prospect of regular 'refreshing' rain showers, nevertheless a fleet of 31 yachts headed out on to the Solent do battle, primarily for yacht club bar room bragging rights.
The match between Cornelius van Rijckevorsel's 1939 International 5 Metre 'Sensa' and James & Sarah Kelman's 1947 cutter 'Croix Des Gardes' took well over 4 hours to resolve, with victory finally going to 'Croix Des Gardes'.
Similarly when Richard Bond's 1938 yawl 'Tomahawk' lined up against Tim & Jo Blackman's 1947 yawl 'Infanta', the two yachts battled it out for almost four hours before the match was finally decided in favour of 'Tomahawk'.
The super light conditions resulted in Martin Thomas's 1963 8 Metre 'Charm of Rhu' ultimately being unable to complete the course and her match against Brian Turner's 'Clarion of Wight' was therefore awarded to to Turner's 1963 sloop. Likewise Michael S Wheeler's 1974 'Golden Fleece' was the only finisher in her three-way match against Andy King's 1929 'Gluckauf' and Lance Rowell's 1948 'Rubicon'.
In the all Spirit of Tradition match up between Stephen O'Flaherty's 'Souffriere', Tom Hill's 'Dido', Beat Kuehni's 'Choices' and Sean McMillan's 'Flight of Ufford', it was the Irish yacht 'Souffriere' that triumphed in the end, followed by 'Dido', 'Choices' and 'Flight of Ufford'.
The closest competition was in the triple challenge match involving Pelham Olive's 1903 gaff rigged 'Kelpie', Sir Michael Briggs's 1904 'Mikado' and Jonathan Cork's 1939 'Athena', which saw all three yachts finish within 35 seconds of each other. 'Kelpie' was the winner, just 8 seconds ahead of 'Mikadao' in second and 'Athena' a further 27 seconds behind in third.
The only other match to be completed saw the regatta's three 12 Metre yachts, R A Rankin's 1985 'Italia', Richard Mathews's 1985 'Crusader', and John Lister's 1937 'Wings' slugging it out, with the light airs flyer 'Wings' taking first, ahead of 'Crusader' in second and 'Italia' in third.
With the weather situation looking more positive for Day 4 of the regatta, the 71 boat fleet will return to regular fleet racing in the form of a long inshore race in and around the environs of the Solent.
Flying 15 World Championships Get Underway
The Hayling Island SC Commodore, Mark Woods, then welcomed the 250 competitors from 15 countries and wished them close and fair competiton over the next week. And while the club had worked hard over the past two years to make sure that the facilities and race organisation were in first class order, he could not order the weather to cooperate.
Finally the Lord Mayor added his welcome to the competitors and their families and friends, and officially declared the 18th Flying 15 Worlds Championships open.
First racing takes place on Friday, 22 July, with two races for the Main and the Classic/Silver fleets. The main fleet of 118 is split into two flights, blue and yellow for qualifying. These will be reassigned for each of the first three days of racing. There will then be four races, 1 per day, with the fleet ranked in final gold and blue fleets. The event finishing on Thursday 28 July. -- Gerald New
A Fleet of more than 30 Boats for the Transat Jacques Vabre
In the larger IMOCA monohulls 14 teams are expected to compete on this classic passage. Within this fleet there will be three new IMOCA Open 60's making their big race debut, the new Cheminees Poujoulat (Bernard Stamm/ Jean-Francois Cuzon) which was launched only this Spring in La Ciotat, the new Macif (Francois Gabart / Sebastien Col) who are scheduled to launch their new boat on August 9th and the new Spanish IMOCA Open 60 of Javier 'Bubi' Sanso. As well as new boats there will be an exciting new face in the fleet, that of French World Cup winning downhill skier turned motor racer Luc Alphand. The winner of the 2006 Paris-Dakar Rally who has retired from motor racing sets sail on his first Transatlantic Race alongside Marc Thiercelin aboard DCNS. Alex Thomson will return to the Transat Jacques Vabre on Hugo Boss ready to put behind him the disappointment of missing out on last winter's Barcelona World Race, while Mike Golding in the colours of his new Spanish sponsor Gamesa races in his seventh consecutive Transat Jacques Vabre.
Since 2007 the Transat Jacques Vabre has been open to the forty foot Class 40 monohulls. This dynamic class sees an international mix of professional and amateur sailors. In this class we should see a new reference time for a course which will be new to them, fifteen teams should compete.
In total the fleet should number more than 30 boats across the three classes, IMOCA, Class 40 and Multi 50, to assemble in Le Havre from October 22, the historic birth place and host city of the race.
The defending champions 2009
IMOCA: Safran, Marc Guillemot - Charles Caudrelier Benac Finished on 24/11/2009 in 15 days, 19 hours, 22 minutes and 10 seconds at 12.46 knots average
Multi 50: Winner: Crepes Whaou! Franck Yves Escoffier - Erwan Leroux Finished on 24/11/2009 in 15 days, 15 hours, 31 minutes and 50 second sat 13.41 knots average
A Spanish Summer
With the PUMA shore base set up, the Puerto Calero Marina in Lanzarote is now the team's summer training headquarters. The crew will use the next two months to test the boat, sails, people and systems.
"Lanzarote was selected for a few reasons," Read said. "First of all, the guys on our team who sailed with Ericsson 4 last time trained here and had a fantastic experience - from the community to the sailing. And, it is the sailing conditions that we need now in this next phase. This amount of breeze will allow us to test things that we weren't able to check in Newport."
Coming from Newport, Rhode Island, the skipper is happy with the dual training arrangement. "That's the beauty of training in two different places - two completely different areas, different weather patterns, different water temperatures - there are all kinds of variables that are critical to preparation."
Launch of the Gipsy Moth Trust
Regarded as a part of British maritime heritage after Sir Francis Chichester sailed Gipsy Moth IV around the world in 1966-67, Rob and Eileen want to give the boat to charity as a gift to ensure it is safeguarded for the nation and can continue to provide opportunities for the public to learn about her historic significance.
Since purchasing Gipsy Moth in October 2010, Rob and Eileen have worked in partnership with maritime charity UKSA to begin to ensure that the boat is both available to the public to view and is used as a tool to give disadvantaged or disabled young people the chance to broaden their horizons and change their lives through sailing.
The Trust aims to continue this work, with Gipsy Moth regularly attending events such as Panerai British Classic Week, Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week and the ASTO Small Ships Race. At each event there will be opportunities for schools, youth groups and members of the public to view Gipsy Moth, including getting onboard and below decks. The Trust will also continue to work with UKSA to engage with young people through schools and youth groups to provide opportunities to learn to sail or to link a visit to Gipsy Moth IV to the schools' curriculum.
In order to contribute to the running costs of the boat for the future and its charitable work, Gipsy Moth is available for businesses, groups and individuals for charter during the events she attends, as well as throughout the year.
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Extreme Sailing Series Comes to Cowes
The fleet of 48 top professional sailors have amongst them competed at 30 Olympic Games. In addition there are 82 World Championship titles amongst the fleet, 57 Records Broken or Held making it the strongest ever line-up seen in the five year history of the circuit.
Emirates Team New Zealand and Artemis Racing will be present despite the unnecessary decision of America's Cup Event Authority to choose the same dates for the ACWS event in Cascais as not just the Extreme Sailing Series, but Cowes Week and the pre-Olympic regatta in Weymouth too. Artemis Racing will bring back their skipper from Act 2 in Qingdao, double Olympic bronze medalist, Santi Lange from Argentina. No-one expects these teams to be any less competitive than in Boston and Istanbul where it came down to the final race.
Aberdeen Asset Management, the new sponsor of Cowes Week which forms the backdrop to Act 5, has announced its own entry skippered by British Olympic 49er class contender John Pink, joined by his regular 49er crew Rick Peacock.
French entry Groupe Edmond de Rothschild, currently lying third, will be looking to regain their top spot on the overall podium having lost it following a disappointing 5th place at the last event in Boston.
Home crowds in Cowes will have plenty of Brits to support. Britain's Team GAC Pindar, will be hoping to continue improving and skipper Ian Williams is fresh from a second World Match Racing Tour victory in Sweden.
Britain's Leigh McMillan, who skippers The Wave, Muscat, will be looking to capitalize on their first podium position in Boston when the team came third.
2010 Extreme Sailing Series champion, Paul Campbell-James, will be back again in Cowes helming for Max Sirena's Italian team Luna Rossa.
And Pete Cumming, skipper of 2009 winning team 'Oman Sail Masirah' will also rejoin the sailors in Cowes, onboard Niceforyou, one of two Italian teams on the circuit.
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