Sunday, December 11, 2011

Luna Rossa Victorious in Singapore and Crowned 2011 Extreme Series Champions

Luna Rossa has taken out Act 9 of the 2011 Extreme Sailing Series in Singapore and claimed the crown for overall champions of 2011.
Luna Ross Photo: © Lloyd Images
The team of Max Sirena, Paul Campbell-James, Alister Richardson and Manuel Modena, who have raced together on the Extreme 40 all season, sailed consistently in the 35 races here in Singapore. That held all the cards going into the final day with a previously unheard of 56-point lead over their arch rivals for the 2011 title, the French team of Groupe Edmond de Rothschild. 
Group Edmond de Rothschild Photo: © Lloyd Image
Pierre Pennec’s team were powerless to stop their rivals as Luna Rossa delivered another set of strong results across today's 10 races. Luna Rossa topped the Act 9 leaderboard with a 45-point margin over 2nd placed The Wave, Muscat. 
Photo: © Lloyd Images
“I’m really happy. Now, finally,”Sirena said. “We close the season well and it wasn’t expected because we didn’t sail well in the last event. I don’t know what happened here but we sailed pretty well and started off the line always in the right position. Tactically and from a crew point of view we were sailing always at 100 per cent which is really good and I’m really proud of the guys. It’s great for our long-term future so we’re really, really happy.”

Despite six different Act winners during the year, coming into the final Act, only the French and Italian teams were in a position to win the overall title. Groupe Edmond de Rothschild took victory at the first Act in Muscat, Oman while the Italian team prevailed at Act 2 in Qingdao, China. Despite Pennec’s men having a ‘home’ victory at Act 7 in Nice, France it was Luna Rossa who had a 1-point advantage over the French coming into the final round. 
Luna Rossa Photo: © Lloyd Images
Over the course of  11 months, nine venues and 301 races, Luna Rossa finally got to lift the Extreme Sailing Series trophy into the air. 

“We’re ecstatic right now,” said British helmsman Paul Campbell-James who has become the first helmsman to win the Extreme Sailing Series twice. “The goal for the week was to beat Gitana and we held a 56 point advantage this morning and at lunchtime we had 59 point lead. I was doing the maths in my head and I knew that if we finished every race in the afternoon we would still beat them and we just had to stay out of trouble.”
Photo: © Lloyd Images
The second place on the podium turned out to be the most closely contested with double points up for grabs in the final race. The Wave, Muscat with Leigh McMillanwere only one point ahead of Roman Hagara’s Red Bull Sailing Team going into the final race and the Austrian team were looking good, having led the event for the first three days. 
ETNZ Photo: © Lloyd Images
The two teams went into match racing mode, rounding the first mark in third and fourth. Locked in their own battle they effectively raced each other down the fleet allowing the other teams to get through and finish ahead. This included Dean Barker’s Emirates Team New Zealand who finished the race in second place as McMillan and Hagara ran out of time to finish within the time limit, scoring zero points. The Wave, Muscat and Emirates Team New Zealand were tied on equal points, the tie broken by The Wave, Muscat’s scoring more first places. 
Photo: © Lloyd Images
“It was a pretty dramatic finish to the event for us after a couple of bad events,” said skipper Leigh McMillan. “So it’s great to be back on the podium and finish the season that way.”

Dean Barker and his crew's result in the final race secured the Kiwi team third place on the overall 2011 podium ahead of The Wave, Muscat. “It’s been a very tough event with Luna Rossa showing the way on how to sail in these conditions and it’s been a very tight battle for the remaining set of podium positions,” said Barker. “We had a good start to the year, leading the circuit after four events and then we had mixed fortunes during the middle of the year. We knew coming here we could only get third which we’ve done.”

Extreme Sailing Series Act 9 Final, Singapore standings after 35 races (11.12.11)
Position / Team / Points

1st Luna Rossa (ITA), Max Sirena / Paul Campbell-James / Alister Richardson / Manuel Modena 260 points
2nd The Wave, Muscat (OMA), Leigh McMillan / Kyle Langford / Nick Hutton / Khamis Al Anbouri 215 points
3rd Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL), Dean Barker / Glenn Ashby / James Dagg / Jeremy Lomas 215 points
4th Red Bull Extreme Sailing (AUT), Roman Hagara / Hans Peter Steinacher / Matt Adams / Craig Monk 214 points
5th Alinghi (SUI), Tanguy Cariou / Yann Guichard / Nils Frei / Yves Detrey 206.5
6th Oman Air (OMA), Chris Draper / Kinley Fowler / David Carr / Nasser Al Mashari 205 points
7th Groupe Edmond de Rothschild (FRA), Pierre Pennec / Christophe Espagnon / Thierry Fouchier / Hervé Cunningham 179 points
8th Team GAC Pindar (GBR), Ian Williams / Mark Bulkeley / Andrew Walsh / Matt Cornwell 167 points
9th Team TILT (SUI), Alex Schneiter / Charles Favre / Arnaud Psarofaghis / Nicolas Heintz 156 points
10th Team Extreme – the first club™ (FRA), Sébastien Col / Jean-Christophe Mourniac / Franck Citeau / Christophe André 150 points

Extreme Sailing Series 2011
Overall 2011 Championship final result after 9 Acts
Position / Team / Points
1st Luna Rossa 80 points
2nd Groupe Edmond de Rothschild 73 points
3rd Emirates Team New Zealand 69 points
4th The Wave, Muscat 67 points
5th Alinghi 66 points
6th Red Bull Extreme Sailing 61 points
7th Oman Air 53 points
8th Artemis Racing 48 points
9th Team GAC Pindar 33 points
10th Team Extreme 22 points
11th Niceforyou 17 points

Lulu Roseman

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