Friday, March 30, 2012

Carnage and Close Racing - Cascais RC44 Cup

It was a full on day of racing with four different winners from four races and the fleet competing fought tooth and nail for every advantage around the race course at the Cascais RC44 Cup 2012.
The steady easterly breeze averaged 15 knots  and produced some very tight one-design racing.
Picking the port lay-line can be a risky manoeuvre with the prospect of a 180 metre duck if you screw  it up. One who fell foul of this today was Patrick de Barros (POR) and Mathieu Richard (FRA) on Team Cascais. The local team found themselves having to duck the entire fleet at the first windward mark of race three after finding no space to squeeze into.
Igor Lah and the team of CEEREF (SLO) had the most consistent day, their worst result was a sixth, their best a win in the fourth and final race of the day. The team managed to stay incident free but it wasn’t all as serene as it looked.

“Today was an excellent day, the conditions were fairly stable and anything could have happened at any moment. In one race we came from almost last up to second or third place. Every moment mattered today so you had to be very careful with how you performed, but Michele (Ivaldi) was calling very good tactics and the crew members were excellent, it really paid off,” Lah said.

Katusha (RUS) helmed this week by Steve Howe (USA) with Russell Coutts (NZL) calling the shots finished the day one point off the lead with a 3,7,1,4 score-line.

“Thank god for comebacks as today’s racing was so close,” Howe said.
Chris Bake's Team Aqua with Cameron Appleton had mixed day. They started with an eighth and bounced back to win the next race. Despite having their wind instruments ripped off the top of their mast by Team Cascais in race three, they racked up a third followed by a ninth leaving them in third overall and just seven points off the lead.
Synergy Russian Sailing Team started where they left off yesterday winning the opening race of the day, however a port starboard incident with AFX Capital (ITA) saw the team lose their crash box. Valentin Zavadnikov with Ed Baird calling the shiftts finished the day in fourth overall  just 10 points off the leader.

New to the fleet is Brian Benjamin (GBR) and his Aegir team who are more used to racing a Maxi yacht.
“Today was fantastic, we had an easier run of it today compared to yesterday, we got beat up a bit in the match racing! We had some really good races, the conditions were great it wasn’t quite as windy as yesterday. Compared to the Maxi’s I’m pretty surprised by how close the boats are. It’s not quite like the Maxi races, it’s a lot more aggressive and there are a lot more boats, probably a lot more fun as well.”

Lulu Roseman

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