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Friday, July 20, 2012

Wild and Wet Conditions Test Fleet at Copa del Rey, Palma - Day Five

Palma de Mallorca, 20 July, 2012

Strong wind conditions prevailed today on the Bay of Palma for the fifth day of racing in the 31st Copa del Rey Audi Mapfre. Winds peaked at 18 to 20 knots from the south southeast for the start of racing and the combination of wind and wild seas made for some action packed starts and fast sailing.
Photo: © Martinez Studio/31 Copa del Rey Audi Mapfre
In IRC 0 RÁN, took two second places in both races today to hold to first position overall with 13 points. The Swedish 72 footer benefited from Shockwave's lacklustre performance and the mini-maxi skippered by George Sakellaris could only manage a fourth and a fifth, and is now nine points behind RÁN. Today's victories went to 65 footer Stig and 72 footer Jethou, which proved faster in the stronger conditions apic batle nd delivering a fantastic show on the water. Stig is third overall on 26 points.
Photo: © Martinez Studio/31 Copa del Rey Audi Mapfre
In the hotly contested IRC1 class Audi Azzurra Sailing Team got sweet revenge on Schuemann's two wins yesterday by scoring back to back victories today. Audi All4One were hot on their heels in race one crossing the line right after the Italo-Argentinean boat, but IRC52 Provezza 7 got in their way in race two.
Photo: © Fito Carreto/31 Copa del Rey Audi Mapfre
All4One and Audi Azzurra Sailing Team are first and second overall both tied on 18 points, Azzurra have more victories and both discarded their results in race six. Third on the leader board is the English boat Gladiator. An epic battled is expected in this class on the final day of racing.
Photo: © Fito Carreto/31 Copa del Rey Audi Mapfre
The Portuguese Soto 40 crew of Bigamist were joined by owner Pedro Mendonça and scored a first and a fifth to take the third position on the podium overall. Everything seems to be decided between the top two of Alegre and Iberdrola who are separated by only five points overall and despite the Spanish boat winning the second race.
Photo: © Jesus Renedo/31 Copa del Rey Audi Mapfre
In J-80 Mapfre stands out as clear favourite with just two races. Conditions proved tricky for the mono-type class, with 14 knots of wind gusting up to 18 knots and lumpy seas in the first race. Carlos Martínez discarded his result on today's first race, which was won by Jose María van der Ploeg skippering Nilfisk, and was third in the second. Nilfisk and Nextel where eighth and sixth respectively, and Mapfre holds to the hot spot with six points advantage over second classified Nextel.
Photo: © Jesus Renedo/31 Copa del Rey Audi Mapfre; 
The strong winds tested sailors in the X-35 class division, and the committee was forced to restart in the second race, after a general recall in the first attempt. Audi Ultra's bad performance today, 7-9, makes her lose the leadership in the overall classification out to Margherita – Jsteam of Roberto Mazzucato, 7-2, which is followed by Hotelplan – Spirit of Nerina” of Alberto Fusco, 3-3. Mazzucato amasses an advantage of 9 points over Fusco, but the winner will surely come down to the last race in the X-35 division.
Photo: © Jesus Renedo/31 Copa del Rey Audi Mapfre
Power Plate is the virtual class winner of the RI 2 class with a 17 point lead over Movistar. The team of Gustavo Martinez Doreste scored two seconds and now only one point separates second and third after Volmer clocked up a first and a fourth.
Photo: © Jesus Renedo/31 Copa del Rey Audi Mapfre
Time limit for the finish of racing tomorrow is 15:45 hours and the prize giving ceremony at Ses Voltes gardens is set to commence at 21:00 hours.

Eva Dallo and Jaume Soler

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