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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Highlights Day 3 - ACWS Newport

New Day 3 - ACWS Newport

Spithill Is All Class - ACWS Newport - Day 3

Jimmy Spithill’s ORACLE TEAM USA continues to impress in Newport, but were denied a fourth consecutive fleet race win by a hard-charging Emirates Team New Zealand.
Photo: © ACEA (2011) / Gilles Martin-Raget
“We had a good solid day,” Barker said. “It’s nice to win one and we have some good momentum going into tomorrow. The ORACLE TEAM USA guys are sailing well, but we’ll do what we can do and if we can win the race we’ll be happy.”

Newport delivered another perfect afternoon of racing conditions, with a sea breeze near 15 knots under sunny skies. Thousands took advantage of the warm afternoon to enjoy the sight from Fort Adams as well as in the hundreds of spectator boats crowding the Narragansett Bay course boundaries.
Photo: © ACEA (2011) / Gilles Martin-Raget
In fleet race three, Spithill threaded the needle at the start, barely squeezing between the Race Committee boat and two of his competitors, hitting the starting line as the gun fired at top speed.

“It was a risky start, but in this type of racing you really have to push things now and then,” Spithill said. “We knew if we got off the starting line well we’d have a shot for being top three in the race, so we’ve been pushing hard.”
Photo: © ACEA (2011) / Gilles Martin-Raget
From there, Spithill extended away while his rivals were engaged in battle behind him. Young Nathan Outteridge and his Team Korea crew had an impressive race in second place, holding off Emirates Team New Zealand, as Dean Barker threatened early, but couldn’t make the passing move and settled for third. Artemis Racing made its way up from near the back of the fleet to take fourth.
Photo: © ACEA (2011) / Gilles Martin-Raget
Fleet race four started like the previous one, with Spithill barging across the starting line to take an early lead. But this time Dean Barker’s crew had an answer on the first upwind leg, working a favorable path up the shoreline, away from the adverse current running down the race course, to take steal the lead.

Loïck Peyron’s Energy Team too, passed Spithill and then Nathan Outteridge squeezed by on the next leg. But the ORACLE TEAM USA crew fought back to ease around the top mark just behind the Kiwis. Barker and crew held their position however all the way to the finish, with Spithill relegated to third, his worst result of the series.

With a second and a fourth place finish, Nathan Outteridge’s Team Korea climbed off the bottom of the leaderboard and now sits just two points out of a podium position.

“It was much better today,” Outteridge said. “I think we got what we deserved. We had some better starts and gave ourselves a chance in both races. There was a bit more breeze so we were really able to be more physical on the boat. The guys on our boat are awesome when the breeze is up, there’s never an issue with the crew work on our boat. Today has given us a good chance to get right in there and if we sail like we did today, we have every chance of getting on the podium and that’s what we’re here for.”

Meanwhile ORACLE TEAM USA COUTTS withdrew from the first race of the day at the halfway point with equipment problems, after hitting one of the turning mark boats.

“I never did like the anchors on those boats,” Coutts joked. “But at least the hull that I was sitting on missed it!”

Coutts went in for repairs, and although he made it out for race four, he was late to start and never in contention, with the last place finish dropping the team to the bottom of the leaderboard. Before racing started, the teams engaged in the AC500 Speed Trial. Here too, Spithill proved the class of the fleet, his second run setting the standard ahead of Energy Team and Team Korea.

Racing starts at 1430 on Sunday with the final of the Newport Match Racing Championship between the two ORACLE TEAM USA crews.

“It’s a high-pressure race,” Spithill joked. “For whoever loses, it’s going to be brutal!!”

Then it’s the fifth and final fleet race to determine the Newport Fleet Racing Champion as well as the overall 2011-12 AC World Series Championship. There are 30 points on offer to the winner of race five, meaning the Newport fleet racing title is wide open.

Sunday’s racing program is live, coast to coast in the United States on NBC, beginning at 1430. This means it will not be shown live on YouTube.com/americascup in the United States. However, the race replay and highlights will be posted after the live broadcast has concluded.

AC World Series Newport - Fleet Racing Championship Results

Race 1 Race 2 Race 3 Race 4 Race 5 Total Points

ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL 1 1 1 3 38
Emirates Team New Zealand 6 2 3 1 32
Energy Team 5 4 7 2 26
Artemis Racing 4 3 4 7 26
Team Korea 8 6 2 4 24
Luna Rossa Piranha 3 8 5 5 23
Luna Rossa Swordfish 7 5 6 6 20
ORACLE TEAM USA COUTTS 2 7 8 8 13

AC500 Speed Trial

1. ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL - 24.77 knots
2. Energy Team - 24.00 knots
3. Team Korea - 23.79 knots
4. Artemis Racing - 23.72 knots
5. Luna Rossa Swordfish - 23.59 knots
6. ORACLE TEAM USA COUTTS - 23.54 knots
7. Luna Rossa Piranha - 23.48 knots
8. Emirates Team New Zealand - 23.17 knots

AC World Series Newport Match Racing Championships – Standings

The top two teams will race in the Final on Sunday
3. Luna Rossa Piranha
4. Artemis Racing
5. Energy Team
6. Emirates Team New Zealand
7. Luna Rossa Swordfish
8. Team Korea

2011-12 AC World Series Overall Championship Leaderboard (after five of six events)

1. ORACLE TEAM USA Spithill…84 points
2. Emirates Team New Zealand…80 points
3. Artemis Racing…71 points
4. Energy Team…65 points
5. Team Korea…56 points
6. ORACLE TEAM USA Coutts…53 points
7. Luna Rossa Piranha…34 points
8. China Team…31 points
9. Luna Rossa Swordfish…21 points

America's Cup Media

Artemis Racing Team Update: ACWS - Newport - Day 3

29 June 2012
America's Cup World Series - Newport
Photo: © Daniel Forster/Artemis Racing
The AC500 speed trials kicked off the day with perfect sailing conditions on Narragansett Bay and thousands of fans lining the shoreline. Artemis Racing was just one second behind the speed trial winner with a time of 23.72 seconds, while ORACLE TEAM USA Spithill took the top prize.
Photo: © Daniel Forster/Artemis Racing
From there the eight teams went straight into two fleet races. In the first race, Artemis got locked out at the start but battled their way back through the fleet from eighth to finish fourth. A difficult feat in this talented fleet.
Photo: © Daniel Forster/Artemis Racing
In the second fleet race, Artemis Racing was over the line early by a fraction of a second. In this field, there are not many passing lanes and although the team had good speed, a seventh place finish in race 4 meant moving into fourth place overall in the fleet racing for this event.
Photo: © Daniel Forster/Artemis Racing
"Everybody is putting in 110%. That is proabably the most frustrating part. The amount of effort that goes into everything, is not represented in our results. We have to keep hanging tough and being a good team," said Skipper Terry Hutchinson.

Tomorrow is the grande finale of the America's Cup World Series - Newport, watch it all live on www.americascup.com.

Artemis Racing Media

Italians Hang On To Lead - Melges 32 Euros - Day 3

Porto Cervo, Italy. 30th June 2012

Nine races held over three days of racing at the Audi Melges 32 European Championship have produced nine different winners in the individual races and a closely-packed overall classification.
Vincenzo Onorato's Mascalzone Latino Photo: © Guido Trombetta/BPSE
Following a less than brilliant day, Vincenzo Onorato's Mascalzone Latino (ITA) hangs on to the overall leadership by just one point over Jason Carroll's Argo (USA). The Italian boat Torpyone, owned by Edoardo Lupi and Massimo Pessina, sits in third place just four points behind the leader while Lanfranco Cirillo's Fantastica and Naofumi Kamei's Mamma Aiuto! are close behind in fourth and fifth place respectively.
Edoardo Lupi and Massimo Pessina's Torpyone Photo: © Guido Trombetta/BPSE
With only one windward-leeward to be held in tomorrow's final race day to take the fleet to the full quota of 10 for the regatta, the conquest of the European title depends entirely on the final race of the series. Organized by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda in collaboration with B-Plan Sport&Events, the regatta is taking place from 28th June to 1st July in Porto Cervo.

Light Sirocco breezes, which touched 14 knots in race eight but mainly blew at approximately 10 knots, once again accompanied the 22 competing boats throughout the three races held today. Race Seven saw Torpyone, with Branko Brcin calling tactics, round the top mark in fourth before climbing to second place behind race winner Brontolo (ITA) and ahead of Japan's Mamma Aiuto! in third.

Although Calvi Network (ITA) got off to a good start in Race Eight, John Kilroy's Samba Pa Ti (USA) moved into the lead ahead of Brontolo and Opus One (GER) on the first downwind leg and all three held their positions to the finish. In the final race of the day it was the turn of the two competing Japanese boats to shine as Mamma Aiuto! claimed their first bullet of the series - in a day which saw them rise from 13th to 5th place overall - while Yasha Samurai took their best result so far with a third place finish behind France's Teasing Machine.

Australia's Nathan Wilmot, double Olympic gold medal winner in the 470 class and tactician aboard Mascalzone Latino was disappointed with today's 15-17-6 scoreline: "It's close, it's hard. Today we didn't have a very good day and the results are really tight so we have to try to do better. Tomorrow will be important but we are still learning at the moment, today we had a few incidents which probably cost us about 10 points in total but tomorrow is another day and hopefully we can get back to where we need to be and stay in the lead."

Argo's tactician Cameron Appleton was equally hopeful for tomorrow: "There are so many people in the hunt and different people doing well in different races, the competition is extremely tight. We didn't feel we had a great day but to be one point off the lead is great. There's just one race tomorrow so now we just have to go out there and have the best race of the regatta and if that is the case then we can win."

Provisional Overall Results
Position. Boat - Owner - Tactician - R1/R2/R3/R4/R5/R6/R7/R8/R9 (discard) - Total Pts

1. Mascalzone Latino - Vincenzo Onorato - Nathan Wilmot - 5/4/6/5/9/1/15/(17)/6 =51
2. Argo - Jason Carroll - Cameron Appleton - 6/8/3/2/(16)/9/13/4/7=52
3. Torpyone - Edoardo Lupi e Massimo Pessina - Branko Brcin - 7/(13)/11/7/3/6/2/7/12=55
4. Fantastica - Lanfranco Cirillo - Michele Paoletti - 3/9/5/4/12/7/(20)/13/4=57
5. Mamma Aiuto! - Naofumi Kamei - Manuel Weiler - (21)/2/21/20/4/2/3/9/1=62
6. Samba Pa Ti - John Kilroy - Steve Hunt - 8/6/20/17/1/(15)/5/1/10=63
7. Audi F.lli Giacomel Fra Martina - Edoardo e Vanni Pavesio - Gabriele Benussi - 9/5/9/3/14/(16)/11/12/5=68
8. Opus One - Wolfgang Stolz - Jesper Radich - 2/3/10/13/11/17/10/3/(21)=69
9. Red - Joe Woods - Nick Rogers - 1/11/7/12/7/18/8/8/(19)=72
10. Bombarda - Andrea Pozzi - Flavio Favini - 12/1/2/9/(17)/5/14/14/15,4=72,4

Jill Campbell

45. AC World Series Grand Finale in Newport - AC Uncovered

Groupama Win In-Port Race - Volvo Ocean Race Update

Hometown heroes Groupama completed a last-gasp win in the Bretagne In-Port Race in Lorient on Saturday to take a big step towards overall victory in the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12.
Photo: Paul Todd/Volvo Ocean Race
Franck Cammas’ crew had spent much of the 9.2 nautical mile race fighting with PUMA for second place but all changed on the penultimate leg when they usurped long-term leaders CAMPER from the top spot and held on to take the win by just 13 seconds, picking up a maximum six points in the process.
Photo: Paul Todd/Volvo Ocean Race
The win puts them 25 points clear at the top of the overall leaderboard with just one offshore leg and one in-port race to go. Five points for CAMPER’s second-place finish puts them top of the inshore series, level on 39 points with PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG after they claimed four points for third, their 11th podium finish in a row.
Photo: Ian Roman/Volvo Ocean Race
Telefónica took fourth, with Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing finishing fifth and Sanya taking sixth.

"This is a very good day for us, especially seeing as we didn’t plan on winning," said Cammas, who has now led his crew to three victories in the in-port series. "It’s incredible to be doing so well. We were aiming for at least third place today -- we outdid ourselves."
Photo: Paul Todd/Volvo Ocean Race
A disappointed Chris Nicholson, skipper of CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand, recognised that his team had thrown away the victory.

"We snatched defeat from victory there,” Nicholson said. “We had that race. We sailed 95 per cent of it spot on and then just let ourselves down at the end.”
Photo: Paul Todd/Volvo Ocean Race
It was CAMPER who enjoyed the best start, overcoming the added pressure of having team manager and Volvo Ocean Race veteran Grant Dalton on board to rocket off the line in around 11 knots of westerly breeze on the waters of Lorient.
Photo: Paul Todd/Volvo Ocean Race
A split in the fleet up the first leg saw CAMPER round mark one ahead with Groupama chasing, followed by PUMA, Sanya, Telefónica and Abu Dhabi, who continued to be punished for a late tack during the start sequence.
Photo: Ian Roman/Volvo Ocean Race
Using aggressive tactics on the fast-paced second leg PUMA edged ahead of Groupama at the second mark, before dropping back to third when the crew lost control of the jib sheet. CAMPER continued to lead, while Abu Dhabi were able to capitalise on a Telefónica’s inshore weakness and move into fourth place. Sanya slumped to sixth.
Photo: Ian Roman/Volvo Ocean Race
Under the watchful eye of thousands of spectators the teams fought hard to make gains knowing full well that opportunities for scoring points were running out and the importance of each meant more than ever before.
Photo: Ian Roman/Volvo Ocean Race
Just as the race reached its climax, a clever call by Cammas’ men saw them squeeze ahead of Nicholson’s crew to take their second win in Lorient following their Leg 9 victory. Another disappointing result for Telefónica, who led the entire race up until the end of Leg 7, saw them slip further out of reach of the overall win from their fourth-place finish.
Photo: Ian Roman/Volvo Ocean Race
Focus now turns to the final offshore leg of the 2011-12 edition, a 550-mile sprint from Lorient to Galway in Ireland, starting at 1102 UTC on Sunday.
OverallBretagne In-Port RaceTotal
1Groupama sailing team6225
2PUMA Ocean Racing by BERG4200
3CAMPER with Emirates Team NZ5196
4Team Telefónica3194
5Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing2124
6Team Sanya140
In-Port SeriesBretagne In-Port RaceTotal
1CAMPER with Emirates Team NZ539
2PUMA Ocean Racing by BERG439
3Groupama sailing team638
4Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing235
5Team Telefónica323
6Team Sanya115
Volvo Ocean Race Media

Latest News From Groupama In The Volvo Ocean Race

After the longest stopover of the Volvo Ocean Race, Lorient is proposing a dense and lively programme this weekend, with an In-Port race in the Coureaux de Groix on Saturday and Sunday's start of the shortest offshore leg (550 miles) to Galway. Despite a 23-point lead, Groupama 4 must not and cannot ease off the pace if she is to be in with a chance of outright victory in Ireland.
Photo: © Yvan Zedda
With a break of over two weeks in Brittany, the crew of Groupama 4 have been spoilt on home soil to celebrate their victory in the eighth leg between Lisbon and Lorient. In this way, they've been able to build up their strength again and spend some time with their loved ones, as well as concentrating on the final stage of this match, which will link together two In-Port races in Lorient (Saturday 30 June) and Galway (Saturday 7 July) and a final offshore leg. Indeed, their main focus has been on this shortest offshore leg of the round the world race, which will take them some 550 miles along the coast of Brittany, the Iroise Sea, the English Channel, the Irish Sea and Galway...

Some Wind To End
Photo: © Yvan Zedda
Over this past week in Lorient, the weather conditions have been highly varied, with some very light airs on Tuesday and Wednesday, and a good old blow on Thursday and this Friday as a Scottish depression rolled onto the scene. The situation will change dramatically on Saturday with a moderate westerly wind for the In-Port race, which will consist of a triangular course between Larmor Plage, Groix and the Pointe du Talud.
Photo: © Yvan Zedda
An hour of intensive racing, which will force Franck Cammas and his men into an aggressive stance as they try to fend off their three closest pursuers, who are going to be doing their utmost to outmanoeuvre them. They're really going to have to be on their guard to avoid a penalty, which might result in a 360° turn and make a podium place nigh on impossible. However, the crew of Groupama 4 (219 points) are primarily focusing on keeping the pressure on their rivals by leaving the minimum number of points up for grabs for one of their three most dangerous adversaries: Puma (196 points), Camper and Telefonica (both 191 points).
Photo: © Yvan Zedda
The French team has a considerable edge, given that they'll be sailing on home waters, at the end of the rising tide (High Tide at 1434 hours, coefficient 65), in a disturbed westerly breeze, and Charles Caudrelier, in charge of the navigation during the In-Port race, is very familiar with this zone. However, this short hour-long format doesn't allow for the slightest mistake, particularly at the start, where it'll be vital to latch onto some clean breeze, unhindered by the other competitors. 
Photo: © Yvan Zedda
Whatever the result of this race, it won't have a huge impact on the standing (6 points for the winner), though it could jostle things up for Groupama 4's three hottest rivals. However, there's no denying that a good score in Lorient would give Franck Cammas and his men a little more room for manoeuvre and it would also be a psychological boost of course.

On Home Waters

Following on from this, 1102 UTC on Sunday will see the start of the ninth and final offshore leg of the Volvo Ocean Race. After a short preliminary course off Lorient, the six crews will leave the islands of Groix and Belle-Île to starboard, before diving towards the island of Sein and climbing up to the Fastnet, to the South-West of Ireland. 

Once again they'll have to make their way along the coast (Irish shores this time), then leave the Aran Islands to starboard before making towards the finish line off Galway. As such it's a short leg which awaits the teams, though one which is packed with traps, since the course has a number of coastal parameters framing their movements: the effects of land, tidal currents, fishing nets, shipping.

As regards the weather, Saturday's depression is set to distance itself from the race zone, to leave the way clear for another Atlantic disturbance which will propel the fleet along fairly quickly, as soon as it's clear of the North-West tip of Brittany. However, it's the section of the course between Belle-Île and Sein, which will prove to be the most technical, as a north-westerly breeze of around ten knots or so on leaving Lorient, is due to ease as it shifts round to the WSW as the fleet approach the Glénan Islands. 

The first to make the Penmarch' headland will be in with a serious chance of a leg victory because, following on from this, the south-westerly breeze of around twenty knots is set to last all the way to the finish in Galway (Monday night or the early hours of Tuesday). This long reach across the English Channel and then the Irish Sea is good news for Groupama 4, which is especially fond of this point of sail, but as Jean-Luc Nélias explains before the start: "our most dangerous adversary is ourselves!"

(Provisional) general standing after eight offshore legs and eight In-Port races:

1-Groupama 4 (Franck Cammas) : 2+20+2+18+5+24+2+30+4+20+6+20+5+25+6+30 = 219 points
2-Puma (Ken Read) : 5+0+4+19+3+17+5+25+5+30+4+30+4+20+5+20 = 196 points
Tied 3rd-Camper (Chris Nicholson) : 4+25+5+24+4+18+3+15+6+15+5+25+3+10+4+25 = 191 points
Tied 3rd-Telefonica (Iker Martinez) : 1+30+6+29+2+27+6+20+1+25+2+15+1+15+1+10 = 191 points
5-Abu Dhabi (Ian Walker) : 6+0+3+10+6+14+4+10+2+0+3+10+6+30+3+15 = 122 points
6-Sanya (Mike Sanderson) : 3+0+1+5+2+5+1+5+3+0+0+0+2+5+2+5 = 39 points

Groupama Media