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Sunday, April 28, 2013

Moth European Championships KIck Off In A Sirocco Wind

Marsala, Italy
Sunday 28 April

An 18 knot Sirocco wind (south-east) with gusts up to 23 knots has greeted the beginning of the 2013 Moth European Championships 2013 in Marsala, Italy. Marsala has a unique coastline shape, thanks to the Lilybeo Cape, that allows the race committee to lay a race course sheltered from the Sirocco in almost flat water.
Photo: Martina Orsini
Today's practice race was held in these conditions with only 16 of the 36 entrants participating. The practice race is not addressed with the same competitive spirit as a standard race. The best tend not to be aggressive at the start and don't care less about tactics and more about on speed and maneuvers. Despite this it is clear who is faster by between 4-5 knots.
Photo: Martina Orsini
Chris Rast (SUI 3990) ruled yesterday in training by setting the new world speed record in the Moth Class. Equipped with a Velocitek, he recorded a top speed of 32.2 knots and an average of 29.1.
Photo: Martina Orsini
For Italians the only one to finish the race was the great Stefano Rizzi, team leader of the Italian Mothies, with a respectable fourth place hinting that this year he has found the pace. Lanulfi Mark, Luke and Thomas Rizzotti Freddi, the other Italian, abandoned the race before the finish to avoid risking their equipment.
Photo: Martina Orsini
The European Championship trophy is on display at the Marsala Sailing Club Marsala with reigning European champion Chris Rashley's name already engraved twice. Since 1955 the trophy has changed hands and on it are inscribed the names of sailors like Simon Payne, Mark Thorpe and Rohan Veal who are not only known for their accomplishments on a Moth but also for the active contribution to the world of sailing and it's evolution.

The Moths hit the water tomorrow with the Sirocco's intensity is expected to peak between 20 and 30 knots. The Kuehne + Nagel 2013 International Moth European Championship is being held over six days where  the foils of the Moths are expected to blast through the Marsala waters.

Lulu Roseman

Team Beau Geste Wins TP52 Southern Cross Cup

Sunday, 28 April 2013
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Team Beau Geste from the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club have won the TP52 Southern Cross Cup held on Port Phillip Bay by a 15 margin over Marcus Blackmore’s Hooligan on 26 points followed by Jason Van Der Slot’s Calm 2 on 29 points.
Team Beau Geste Photo: Teri Dodds
“The competition was very keen and the standard of racing very high. Mother Nature threw in some variety, particularly yesterday.It was like a Hobart race just two miles off the beach, I’ve never seen anything like it," owner Karl Kwok said
Shogun V Photo: Teri Dodds
“The fact this is an owner driven association makes it most friendly. The race management and the facilities were world class. Sandringham Yacht Club is probably the best looking club I’ve ever been to,” Kwok added.
Scarlet Runner and Calm Photo: Teri Dodds
It was the second regatta in the four-stage circuit devised by Australian TP52 owners.

In WSW winds, which started out at 16 knots moderating to 10 knots by the final race, plus a nasty chop at times, Team Beau Geste used the final four races to put daylight between them and second on the IRC overall pointscore.
Hooligan  Photo: Teri Dodds
Marcus Blackmore’s TP52 Hooligan, helmed for two of the three day regatta by one of the country’s best known maxi yacht skippers, Mark Richards, encountered a major problem in race six when their mainsail developed a half-metre tear, rendering them a DNF.

“We had three sail makers and a good sail repair kit on board. The boys did a great job of fixing the sail and that got us back in the next couple of races,” Hooligan’s tactician Stu Bannatyne said.

“Beau Geste sailed a safe, smart regatta and didn’t make mistakes when others did, including us. They showed that consistent, conservative sailing wins regattas, sometimes by a big margin. All in all there were a lot of positives for us to take away. The potential is there, we are only half way through the series,” Bannatyne added.

Final PHS results put Tony Lyall’s Cougar II from Tasmania ahead of Rob Date’s Scarlet Runner (SYC) and John Williams’ Calm (SYC).

Conditions varied wildly over the three-day, eight boat class wrangle. Friday saw an average 10 knot WNW breeze while in contrast a forecast northerly hit the track on Saturday with a vengeance. Gusts up to 36 knots were recorded by SYC’s tower before the wind settled down to 22-24 knots for that day’s one and only start on a white-capped Port Phillip. The breeze then steadily climbed over the owners’ agreed upper limit of 24 knots and the fleet was given an early mark by Principal Race Officer Denis Thompson.
Lisa Ratcliff

Aussies Rock The Boat at ISAF Sailing World Cup in Hyeres, France

Australian sailors have won two gold medals on the final day of the ISAF Sailing World Cup in Hyeres, France, with Tom Burton claiming a come from behind Laser gold while Mathew Belcher and Will Ryan continued their dominant run to win the 470 men’s class.
Photo: Jean-Marie Liot /DPPI / FFVOILE
Persistent rain and incredibly light winds made for two challenging Laser medal races with Burton starting the day third overall, behind Croatia’s Tonci Stipanovic and dual Olympic gold medallist Robert Scheidt of Brazil.

Burton came out on top after finishing fourth in medal race one, and sixth in race two, giving him gold by nine points over Scheidt with Stipanovic third.

“It feels good to win here, after not having the best result in qualifying I wanted to be back in the game and got there right on the last day with some consistent results. One of my goals for the season was to retain my world number one ranking and win the ISAF Sailing World Cup again so it’s all looking good at the moment," Burton said.

“The conditions today were very soft and tricky, after waking up this morning to see some nice wind the rain came in and the breeze swung and died. Our first race was in about five knots, but the second started in around three knots and glassed out halfway through," he added.

“Although it was looking like a joke at some point it was something I was a little familiar with after Sail Melbourne in 2010 which was my first major podium where I beat Tom Slingsby in similar conditions. I had great starts in both races and was able to put a little pressure on the other guys from the get go. I was up in second in the final race but fell out of the pressure on the last run to lose a few boats but made sure I would stay in front of the main guys.”

Burton was joined in the medal races by fellow Australian Ryan Palk who moved up from his overnight ninth to finish the regatta eighth overall. Palk was at the front of the fleet in both races, finishing third and fourth in the light conditions in his fourth straight ISAF Sailing World Cup round medal race.

Mathew Belcher and Will Ryan went into the final day with a 16 point lead at the head of the 470 men’s fleet but with two double point medal races scheduled knew they would have to keep racing hard to finish on the top step of the podium.

Belcher and Ryan did exactly that, winning both medal races in the best breeze of the day to claim gold by 32 points over local sailors Sofian Bouvet and Jeremie Mion.

“It was a long day of waiting for us but we were fortunate to certainly get the best breeze of the day. Race one was non-pumping and we were able to have a good start to be in the top group at the top mark, Mat did a great job weaving us a nice pathway downwind in the fickle pressure and we were able to lead around the bottom mark and for the rest of the racing, sealing the win for us," Ryan said.

“It opened the second race for us as we were able to just go out there and have fun. You always sail your best when you’re enjoying it and we were able to lead from start to finish and extend throughout the race for a great win,” he added.

“It’s certainly great to have the racing form that we have at the moment. To be able to continue Mat’s winning streak which goes back to November 2011 is something special and not something that has been done before at such a high level. Racing here is still about building our skills as a team and this event gave us a big range of wind conditions which was great from that perspective. We had some tough races which required us to dig deep and it’s nice to find that element to our sailing.”

Oliver Tweddell contested his first European ISAF Sailing World Cup Finn medal race on Saturday with the 22-year-old finishing the regatta in 10th position. Tweddell was 10th in race one and sixth in race two, an impressive finish as he continues to recover from an arm injury.

Full results are available at http://swc.ffvoile.com/

Craig Heydon

Friday, April 26, 2013

Aussies Are Climbing Up The Leaderboard At Sailing World Cup - Hyeres, France

Australian crews have made their way up the leader board on day four of racing at the ISAF Sailing World Cup in Hyeres, France.
Photo: Thom Touw Photography/www.ThomThow.com
Mathew Belcher and Will Ryan have moved into the lead in the 470 men’s class, while Tom Burton has worked his way into fourth in the Laser fleet.

Belcher and Ryan began the day second overall, with a 13th in race one and a win in race two giving them the lead. The pair is now nine points clear of French crew Pierre Leboucher and Nicholas Le Berre with two fleet races and two medal races remaining.

“Today was a tricky day, the breeze didn’t really live up to the forecast and it was hard to have a good understanding of the pressure, but it was really tight racing. We were able to develop our racing skills and teamwork in the variable conditions which was really positive, and on top of that we were able to record another win," Ryan said.

“We struggled again at the start of the first race, and with a slightly one-sided racetrack at times it makes it tough work trying to work our way back through the fleet. The fact that we were able to do this is certainly very satisfying for us. The pressure built in the second race but again we had some very close racing," he added.

“We were in the top group for most of the racing but only managed to sneak through on the final downwind for the win. Tomorrow the forecast again looks a bit varied but we are scheduled for afternoon races so we’ll enjoy a bit of a relaxing morning before the final two fleet races.”

Tom Burton continues to work his way up the leader board in the Laser class, finishing day four in fourth position. He won the opening race of the day and was 11th in race two, moving him to within nine points of the final podium position, currently held by dual Olympic gold medallist, Robert Scheidt of Brazil.

“Today ended up being pretty good. I had some nice starts and got to the front in the first race of the day to take the bullet. It got a little shiftier in the second race and I didn’t find the right side and ended up in the bunch around the top but managed to pull to back for an 11th which is pretty solid in the gold fleet," Burton said.

“So I’m still in the game with a day of fleet racing to go and hopefully I can get a little closer to the lead heading into the medal race,” he added.

Ashley Brunning is currently 10th overall, closely followed by Ryan Palk and Jared West who are 14th and 15th respectively. With two races scheduled for Friday ahead of Saturday’s double medal race all three sailors are in with a chance of making the top 10.

Matthew Wearn is currently in 19th position with Luke Elliott in 58th. Oliver Tweddell is 13th in the Finn fleet following a 10th and a 19th on Thursday, ahead of Brendan Casey in 18th, Jake Lilley in 33rdand Rob McMillan in 58th.Jason Waterhouse and Lisa Darmanin sit 18th in their first regatta in the Nacra 17 mixed multihull, continuing to learn with every race start.

Matthew and Robert Crawford are 44th in the 470 men’s fleet, ahead of Angus Galloway and Tim Hannah in 50th. In the RS:X women’s class Joanna Sterling is 25th, with Paris Stowell 36th and Annalise Gilbert 38th. Patrick Vos is 32nd in the RS:X men.

Racing continues in Hyeres on Friday, ahead of Saturday’s medal races.

For full results http://swc.ffvoile.com/

Craig Heydon

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Wild Conditions Expected For TP52 Southern Cross Cup Regatta

Strong westerly winds in Bass Strait hold the key to the all-important forecast for stage two of the TP52 Southern Cross Cup this weekend. If they push north into Victoria’s Port Phillip there could be plenty of bump and grind to potentially mix up the stage one results. If the high pressure system wins the arm wrestle, yacht crews will have to rely on brains more than brawn.
Photo: Teri Dodds
Light winds and warm temperatures were a feature of February’s opening bout hosted by Sandringham Yacht Club. Autumn has since brought a chill to the waters of what’s commonly called ‘the Bay’, and the current season can also mean wide variations in local breezes.
Photo: Teri Dodds
Barney Walker, helmsman on local boat Calm 2, owned and skippered by Jason Van Der Slot, says the forecast for gradient NW-W winds looks likely to bring decent pressure to the race track, particularly on Saturday. If there’s some SW influence that can stir up a fetch, meaning choppy conditions for the eight TP52s contesting the three-day regatta.

“It’s going to be a tricky weekend for sure,” says Walker. “How much breeze we get on the day will vary on how far north the westerlies come up from Bass Strait into Victoria. If there’s cloud cover this can also change the Bureau’s forecast day-by-day, and even hour-by-hour.”

Shogun 5’s skipper Rob Hanna is well aware of the local vagaries at this time of year. “Forecasts really don't mean much other than to help with sail selection. There could be five knots of nothing or 15-20 knots, and not much in the middle,” he said earlier in the week. Of one thing he was certain: “On the day there will be weather.”

Now that the regatta is imminent, Hanna has a more reliable set of figures and he’s predicting Saturday will be the heavy air day, potentially a “sail maker’s dream day” with plenty of torn kites, though manageable seas.

Off the back of their Audi IRC Australian Championship win at Geelong’s Festival of Sails in January, Shogun V was one of the red hot favourites going into round one of the TP series. Racing without instruments and sluggish starts had the newly crowned IRC champions and those looking on scratching their heads in the first half.

As the breeze increased and their start sequences improved, the Geelong champion climbed impressively back up through the pecking order. Their two wins on the final day put them back in familiar territory and were enough to give them a fourth place overall behind Team Beau Geste (HKG), Hooligan (NSW) and Calm 2 (VIC).

Shogun V will race this weekend with a new addition, seasoned navigator Bryan Northcote, plus regular tactician Steve McConaghy among the gun crew. “It will be very tight racing and starts once again will be critical,” added Hanna.

Rob Date, weddings and TP52 regattas don’t seem to mix. Date will miss the entire round this weekend while attending a country wedding while for round one he was whisked ashore as soon as Scarlet Runner crossed the finish line on the last of the Saturday races so he could attend a family friend’s evening nuptials.

In charge of the RP52 in the owner’s absence this weekend will be veteran yachtsman Ross Lloyd on the wheel and boat manager Brett Avery.

Date’s still monitoring the forecast of course, and given Scarlet Runner beat Shogun V around the track in a recent Association Cup light air race, he was hopeful of another perfect window for the Reichel Pugh design, 5-11 knots and flat seas. “Friday’s forecast 15-20 knot nor’wester is not great news for the red boat. This weekend looks like Shogun’s weather for sure,” Date ventured.

This will be the RP52’s final batter up for the Southern Cross Cup before Date switches the boat back to ocean racing mode and sets off on an epic journey of hopefully many downhill runs starting with July’s Audi Sydney Gold Coast yacht race. Next on Scarlet Runner’s itinerary is the Brisbane to Keppel Island race then on to Cape Town for the Cape Town to Rio Race starting January 4, 2014. Antigua Race Week in the Caribbean is on the calendar and finally the Pacific Cup in July, billed as the ‘fun race’ from San Francisco to Hawaii.

Today, ANZAC Day, is the official crew training day for the eight TP52 crews, among them multiple America’s Cup, Olympic and Volvo Ocean Race sailors.The Bureau of Meteorology’s forecast for tomorrow’s opening day is W-NW 15-20 knots tending westerly at 10-15 knots in the afternoon. Saturday is likely to deliver NW winds 15-20 knots during the morning and 20-25 knots by early afternoon.

The competition will run through to Sunday with up to three races scheduled daily starting from midday on Friday and Saturday and the family friendly time of 10am on Sunday so interstate and international crews can be home that evening.

The stakes are high for Karl Kwok’s Team Beau Geste sailing for the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club, which is one up in the four-part series. Beau Geste’s helmsman Gavin Brady is looking forward to a pressured-up rematch, “52 sailors love the breeze, there is no other keel boat in the world that perform like a 52 downwind in wind and waves.”

List of entries:

Boat name
Skipper’s name
Yacht club
Frantic
Michael Martin
LMYC / NCYC
Calm 2
Jason Van Der Slot
SYC
Team Beau Geste
Karl Kwok
RHKYC
Scarlet Runner
Rob Date
SYC
Shogun V
Rob Hanna
RGYV / RYCV
Calm
John Williams
SYC
Hooligan
Marcus Blackmore
RPAYC
Cougar II
Anthony Lyall
RYCT

 Lisa Ratcliff

ORACLE TEAM USA boat two launch - AC UNCUT

Perfect Score on Day One For Belcher and Ryan at Sailing World Cup Hyeres, France

Mathew Belcher and Will Ryan have made the perfect start to finals racing at the ISAF Sailing World Cup in Hyeres, France, with two wins from two starts in the 470 men’s class.
Photo: Thom Touw Photography/www.ThomThow.com
After two days of light conditions the breeze finally picked up in Hyeres, getting up towards 20 knots in the afternoon, allowing the crews to stretch their legs.

Belcher and Ryan went into the finals in fourth positions with their two wins moving them up to second, two points behind Great Britain’s Luke Patience and Joe Glanfield.

“It was postcard sailing today here in Hyeres with sunshine and a building breeze up to about 20 knots. We started the first race well and were able to sail smart to extend nicely and win, it’s always great to start the finals with a win," Ryan said.

“The second race didn’t start as well as we didn’t have a very good lane, and at the same time Mat lost his last Olympic hat. We were able to get clear though and quickly get back in phase with the fleet, there were lots of small shifts and pressure lines across the course keeping the racing pretty tight, but we were able to just slip into second place around the top mark,” he added.

“We were quite a way back from the leading British crew but we were slowly able to work our way up to them and overtook them on the final downwind which was very satisfying and a great way to finish the opening day of finals.”

Belcher said that the day went pretty well to plan as himself and Ryan continue to develop their partnership in the boat.

“Most things went our way today, with good speed we managed to win both races. We had to work quite hard during the second race to catch the British but got them in the end, we’ve got such a great rivalry with them," Belcher said.

“With the new scoring system allowing a drop after two races things are quite close but we hope to continue our performance during the rest of the finals series. We’re expecting similar conditions tomorrow, so it’ll be nice to have the opportunity to continue developing ourselves in these conditions," he added.

Tom Burton was the big mover in the Laser fleet, ending day one of the finals series seventh, up from his overnight 21st. He won silver at the last World Cup round in Palma and was second over the line in both of Wednesday’s races. Two days of racing remaining before the medal races and he will be keen to continue moving up the leader board.

Fellow Australian Ashley Brunning is one place further behind in eighth, tied on points with Burton. Brunning started the day 15th, with a 14th and an eighth allowing him to move up.

Ryan Palk is the next best placed Australian in 13th, one place ahead of Jared West, with Matthew Wearn 26th. Wearn had two good races on Wednesday, opening the day with an eighth before finishing in style, winning the final race of the day. Luke Elliott is currently 59th.

In the Finn fleet Oliver Tweddell continues to be the leading Australian, in eighth overall. Tweddell began the day with an 11th before slipping back in race two to finish 31st.

“I had a nice start to the gold fleet racing posting an 11th but unfortunately my arms blew up in the second race and I limped across the line in 31st,” he said. “I’ve had some treatment and will see how I'm going in the morning, hopefully I can race tomorrow as I’ve been having fun today.”

Brendan Casey ended day one of the finals in 17th overall, picking up a sixth and a 24th from the day’s two races. Jake Lilley is the next best Australian in 32nd, ahead of Rob McMillan in 65th.

Jason Waterhouse and Lisa Darmanin had a tough day in the Nacra 17 fleet, with a couple of capsizes hampering their progress. The Sydney based cousins were 24th in the opening race, before rounding the day out with an 18th and a 21st.

“Not much good news from us today as we had a tough day with two capsizes. We’re still trying to find the limits of the boat and today we pushed them a bit too hard. We’re hoping for more wind tomorrow so we can use what we learnt today and better our heavy weather skills,” Waterhouse said.

In the 470 men’s fleet Angus Galloway and Tim Hannah are currently 44th, ahead of Matthew and Robert Crawford in 48th.

Joanna Sterling ended day one of finals racing 26th in the RS:X women’s fleet, ahead of Paris Stowell in 35th and Annalise Gilbert in 40th. Patrick Vos is 40th in the RS:X men’s.

Full results are available at http://swc.ffvoile.com/

Craig Heydon

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Luna Rossa Finds Success in Napoli at ACWS

Led by helmsman Francesco Bruni, Luna Rossa Swordfish today won the overall championship of the America’s Cup World Series Naples. Bruni posted a thrilling win in the fleet racing finale, coming from behind on the final run in a race that saw the lead change hands three times.
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
The win was cathartic for the emotional Italian helmsman. Earlier in the day Luna Rossa Swordfish lost the match racing championship to Oracle Team USA Slingsby. Bruni was critical of his performance in the loss after leading the match early on.
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
“This win was the only way to forget our mistake in the match racing,” said Bruni, who will be the tactician aboard Luna Rossa Challenge’s AC72 in the upcoming Louis Vuitton Cup, America’s Cup Challenger Series (July 4-Aug. 30).
“The fleet race win really means a lot to me. We had an opportunity for the double win, but just missed out. I can’t thank my crew enough, Paul Campbell-James, Max Sirena, Xabi Fernandez and Manuel Modena. They did a great job today.”

Slingsby delivered on his stated goal: to secure the overall 2012-2013 America’s Cup World Series season championship for Oracle Team USA, the defense team in the upcoming 34th America’s Cup (Sept. 7-21). He wrapped up that championship yesterday and today added the match racing title as well.

“I’m really proud to be getting the America’s Cup World Series trophy for Oracle Team USA,” said Slingsby. Oracle Team USA also won last year’s championship. “Jimmy Spithill and his team set it up for us. We just had to come here, do our best and luckily he gave us enough of a lead to take home the trophy.”

The second America’s Cup World Series Naples surpassed last year’s event in terms of spectators. Local event officials estimate that more than 1 million people have turned out along the Naples waterfront and in the Race Village to enjoy the week-long event.

The crowds began coming out in force last Sunday with some 100,000 people estimated to have lined the shores of the Bay of Naples for the informal coastal race. The fans kept returning, lured by close racing yards from the shoreline and nightly entertainment at the Race Village.

Slingsby won the match racing championship by overtaking Bruni on the second upwind leg. After trailing by 22 seconds at the leeward gate, Slingsby showed the moves that have earned him the nickname “the wind whisperer” due to his ability to sniff out wind shifts and puffs.

“It was so shifty that I honestly thought we had a good chance,” said Slingsby. “I knew if we could get them out of phase on the shifts and we were in phase, huge gains could be made. We said we could catch them and I’m so glad that we did.”

Slingsby passed Bruni when the Italian failed to cover. Until that moment, Bruni had sailed a brilliant match. He showed great patience in the pre-start, stuffing Slingsby and holding him off the course.

“We did everything perfectly until that moment,” said Bruni. “We made a couple of big mistakes on the last upwind leg. The wind was shifting a lot and we had a couple of bad tacks where boat completely stopped.”

Second place in the America’s Cup World Series season championship went to Chris Draper and Luna Rossa Piranha. The defending champions at America’s Cup World Series Naples placed fourth overall this year.

“I think we were going so well just before event, we probably got a little bit expectant and ahead of ourselves,” said Draper, the helmsman of Luna Rossa’s AC72. “But we’re pleased to place second overall in the series. There are a lot of good teams out here.”

America’s Cup World Series Naples wraps up the 2012-13 America’s Cup World Series season. The focus now shifts to the “Summer of Racing” planned for San Francisco. It begins in July with the Louis Vuitton Cup, the America’s Cup Challenger Series, and concludes in September with the America’s Cup Finals.

America’s Cup World Series Naples Championship Standings
1. Luna Rossa Swordfish (Francesco Bruni) – 80 points
2. Oracle Team USA (Tom Slingsby) – 80
3. Emirates Team New Zealand (Dean Barker) – 71
4. Luna Rossa Piranha (Chris Draper) – 70
5. J.P. Morgan BAR (Ben Ainslie) – 65
6. Energy Team (Yann Guichard) – 58
7. Artemis Racing White (Charlie Ekberg) – 40
8. HS Racing (R. Hagara/H.S. Steinacher) – 36
9. China Team (Mitch Booth) – 30

America’s Cup World Series Naples Match Racing Championship
1. Oracle Team USA Slingsby, 2. Luna Rossa Swordfish, 3. J.P. Morgan BAR, 4. Luna Rossa Piranha, 5. Emirates Team New Zealand, 6. Artemis Racing White, 7. Energy Team, 8. HS Racing, 9.China Team

2012-2013 America's Cup World Series Season Championship
1. Oracle Team USA SPITHILL/SLINGSBY – 245 points
2. Luna Rossa Piranha – 191
3. J.P. Morgan BAR – 181
4. Emirates Team New Zealand – 171
5. Energy Team – 160
6. Artemis Racing White – 160
7. Luna Rossa Swordfish – 151
8. Team Korea – 105
9. Oracle Team USA Coutts – 98
10. Artemis Racing Red – 90
11. China Team – 73
12. HS Racing – 36

2012-2013 America’s Cup World Series Match Racing Championship
1. Oracle Team USA Spithill/Slingsby 29 points, 2. Emirates Team New Zealand – 22, 3.Artemis Racing White – 21, 4. Oracle Team USA Coutts – 16, 5. J.P. Morgan BAR – 15, 6.Energy Team – 15, 7. Luna Rossa Swordfish – 14, 8. Luna Rossa Piranha – 13, 9. Artemis Racing Red – 8, 10. China Team – 5, 11. Team Korea – 5, 12. HS Racing – 3

America's Cup Media

Aussie/Kiwi Showdown Set for ACWS in Naples

Dean Barker’s Emirates Team New Zealand won today’s fisticuffs on the Bay of Naples, but it was Oracle Team USA’s Australian helmsman Tom Slingsby who is on the verge of securing the season-long battle for the 2012-2013 America’s Cup World Series Championship in his fellow Aussie Jimmy Spithill’s No. 4 boat.
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
Spithill led Oracle Team USA to the inaugural America’s Cup World Series season championship last year, and opened a 44-point lead through the first two regattas in the second season of racing.
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
He couldn’t attend this week’s regatta because the team is about to launch its second AC72 in preparation for the upcoming 34th America’s Cup in San Francisco (Sept. 7-21) so in stepped Slingsby, the Laser class Gold medalist at last summer’s Olympics.
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
Slingsby has shown a steady hand in his first America’s Cup World Series regatta, leading the team into tomorrow’s match racing championship and also eyeing a chance to win the fleet racing championship. But regardless of how he finishes tomorrow, Oracle Team USA is in a strong position for the overall season championship (barring an unforeseen circumstance).
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
“It’s great for the team, winning the America’s Cup World Series for the second year in a row,” said Slingsby. “I’m glad I could help in some way, but this championship doesn’t belong to me. It belongs to Jimmy and his team for setting it all up. I came in with a nice big lead.”
In some of the most challenging conditions seen yet at America’s Cup World Series Naples, Emirates Team New Zealand showed jet-like speed in winning both of today’s fleet races. The wind strength ranged between 7 and 12 knots but there was a nasty chop on the bay that placed added emphasis on smooth boathandling.

After scoring the double firsts, Emirates Team New Zealand is the third overall leader of the series in as many days. Barker’s crew led the first race from start to finish and then pulled off a nifty pass on Luna Rossa Swordfish (Francesco Bruni) to win the second race.

“I feel like all through training and racing we’ve had good pace through all the conditions,” said Barker. “But there’s a bit of a mistral pushing a little bit of seaway into the bay. It makes these boats nasty to sail, they don’t like waves. But it rewards good crew work and I think that’s a strength of our team.”

Slingsby placed 2-5 in the two fleet races and trails Emirates Team New Zealand by 5 points. The ORACLE TEAM USA tactician/strategist began his day with a victory in the match racing semi final over Ben Ainslie’s J.P. Morgan BAR. Although the two are brothers in arms in ORACLE TEAM USA, there was no quarter given in their quick, 11-minute match race.

The pair was locked in battle up the first beat when Slingsby won the first cross. He gained a bit of control over Ainslie but almost gave it away at the windward mark. Ainslie was on port tack in the three-boatlength circle ahead of Slingsby on starboard tack. Under the racing rules Ainslie had rights to round the mark, but Slingsby crossed and rounded the left-hand mark while Ainslie bore away to round the right-hand mark.

“We peeled off on the gate. The left-hand side of the course seemed to be working. It was pretty close,” said Ainslie. “Full credit to them, hopefully they can win tomorrow.”

ORACLE TEAM USA races Luna Rossa Swordfish in tomorrow’s match racing championship. Bruni also won an in-house battle in the semi finals when he beat Chris Draper and the Luna Rossa Piranha crew. The two squared off after an extended training period in New Zealand.

“I feel comfortable, I feel all the training we have done in Auckland was very useful,” said Bruni. “We really put a lot of hours into our match racing skills. I think Chris has improved a lot and I’ve improved a lot steering.”

Slingsby, who has overcome the pressure of winning a Gold medal as a heavy favorite, has his sights set high for tomorrow.

“I want to win tomorrow,” Slingsby said. “New Zealand has a nice lead right now, but if we win tomorrow we’ll take the glory. For the team it’s great, but for me personally my job’s not done yet. I want to win tomorrow.

“This is my one chance in an America’s Cup World Series. Who knows when the next event will be so I’m trying to make most of it,” he said.

America’s Cup World Series Naples Championship Standings
(Provisional, after 6 of 7 scheduled races)
1. Emirates Team New Zealand (Dean Barker) – 60 points
2. Oracle Team USA (Tom Slingsby) – 55
3. J.P. Morgan BAR (Ben Ainslie) – 52
4. Luna Rossa Piranha (Chris Draper) – 50
5. Energy Team (Yann Guichard) – 42
6. Luna Rossa Swordfish (Francesco Bruni) – 40
7. Artemis Racing White (Charlie Ekberg) – 31
8. HS Racing (R. Hagara/H.S. Steinacher) – 26
9. China Team (Mitch Booth) – 22

2012-2013 America's Cup World Series Season Championship
(Provisional, after 20 of 21 races)
1. Oracle Team USA Spithill/Slingsby – 220 points
2. Luna Rossa Piranha – 171
3. J.P. Morgan BAR – 168
4. Emirates Team New Zealand – 160
5. Artemis Racing White – 151
6. Energy Team – 144
7. Luna Rossa Swordfish – 111
8. Team Korea – 105
9. ORACLE TEAM USA COUTTS – 98
10. Artemis Racing Red – 90
11. China Team – 65
12. HS Racing – 26

Sunday’s Match Racing Schedule

Final: Oracle Team USA Slingsby vs. Luna Rossa Swordfish

Provisional Match Racing Standings
3rd place – J.P. Morgan BAR, 4th – Luna Rossa Piranha, 5th – Emirates Team New Zealand, 6th – Artemis Racing White, 7th – Energy Team, 8th – HS Racing, 9th – China Team

America's Cup Media

Friday, April 19, 2013

Slingsby Rocks Among The Carnage - ACWS - Day 2 - Naples

Helmsman Tom Slingsby led Oracle Team USA into the top spot in the standings with finishes of 1-2 in today’s two fleet races. Slingsby, filling in for team skipper Jimmy Spithill, also won his first competitive match race, a 34-second victory over HS Racing led by co-skippers Roman Hagara and Hans-Peter Steinacher.
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
“It was an ideal day for us, we’re really happy,” said Slingsby, the 28-year-old Australian who won the Gold medal in the Laser class at last year’s London Olympics.
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
“The wind was a bit steadier today so you just had to worry about getting a good start, boathandling and positioning,” Slingsby continued. “You didn’t have to read into watching the wind and everything it did. It was a beautiful seabreeze with small shifts and made things a bit easier.”
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
Slingsby’s performance impressed even the U.S. Ambassador to Italy, David Thorne, who was guest racer aboard Oracle Team USA.

“Looking at the racing, it’s really spectacular,” said Thorne. “Being in it, doing it, it's so much fun to get engaged in something like this. These are not really sailboats, they're airplanes. It's a spectacular feeling of speed and movement. It's completely thrilling.”

Led by skipper Yann Guichard, France’s Energy Team posted a 2-1. They were overtaken by Slingsby on the second upwind leg in the first fleet race, but rebounded for a 26-second win in the second race.

“Yesterday was difficult to understand the race course, it was very shifty. Today the wind was very steady so I could really focus on the speed of the boat, especially on the start,” said Guichard, who led Energy Team to 4th place at last year’s AC World Series Naples.

“It will all come down to Sunday, but it's really important to do well day after day so we can be confident going into the last day,” Guichard said.

While the fleet races were tame in terms of boats banging off each other, the same cannot be said of the day’s first match race between Luna Rossa Swordfish and Emirates Team New Zealand.

The rival crews who spent the winter training on AC72s in New Zealand were involved in a collision at the windward mark that flattened the starboard bow of Luna Rossa Swordfish and damaged the port stern scoop of Emirates Team New Zealand.

Dean Barker got Emirates Team New Zealand off to a good start when he forced Francesco Bruni and Luna Rossa Swordfish over the start line early. Barker led by 5 seconds around the leeward mark but Bruni steadily chipped away at that lead upwind.

As the two crews aimed to round the left side windward mark, Barker approached on starboard with Bruni on port. Video replays show that Bruni got to the three-boatlength circle a split second before Barker, which gave Bruni rights to round the mark free of interference from Barker.

Barker, however, continued sailing straight to the mark and Bruni crashed into him as he started to tack towards the mark. Barker was penalized on the ensuing run and Bruni won the match.

But the damage to the boats was done and later Luna Rossa Swordfish retired from the second fleet race due to the damage despite finishing 3rd in the first fleet race.

“We are happy with our win over Team New Zealand because they are one of the best teams on the water so to beat them is a nice thing to do,” said Luna Rossa Challenge skipper Max Sirena, a trimmer aboard Swordfish.

“In the second race we broke the headstay bracket on the bowsprit, it dragged back 10 centimeters. We think it’s because of the damage in the collision,” Sirena said.

Barker was upset that Luna Rossa Swordfish didn’t do more to avoid the collision.

“Normally, even if you're in the right you avoid collisions resulting in serious damage and it doesn't seem like they did a lot,” said Barker, a past match racing world champion. “I think it's pretty poor to be honest. But the umpires see it the way they see it and our guys have a long night to fix the boat.”

Both boats were hauled from the water for their shore teams to affect repairs.

Racing resumes tomorrow at 14:00 local time (CEST).

America’s Cup World Series Naples Championship Standings
(Provisional, after 4 of 7 scheduled races)
1. ORACLE TEAM USA (Tom Slingsby) – 38 points
2. Energy Team (Yann Guichard) – 36
3. Emirates Team New Zealand (Dean Barker) – 36
4. J.P. Morgan BAR (Ben Ainslie) – 35
5. Luna Rossa Piranha (Chris Draper) – 33
6. Luna Rossa Swordfish (Francesco Bruni) – 23
7. Artemis Racing White (Charlie Ekberg) – 21
8. HS Racing (R. Hagara/H.S. Steinacher) – 17
9. China Team (Mitch Booth) – 14

Saturday’s Match Racing Schedule
Semifinal 1: Luna Rossa Piranha vs. Luna Rossa Swordfish
Semifinal 2: Oracle Team USA Slingsby vs. J.P. Morgan BAR

America's Cup Media

Story of the Day, April 19 - ACWS Naples 2013

Race Highlights, April 18 - ACWS Naples 2013

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Ainslie On Fire In Naples - AC45

A competitive fleet of nine AC45 catamarans skippered by some of the world’s best sailors combined with unsettled wind conditions to produce an exciting opening day at the America’s Cup World Series Naples.
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
Ben Ainslie’s J.P. Morgan BAR crew hold the early lead in the series. They scored 21 points after placing 3-1 in the two fleet races and lead Dean Barker’s Emirates Team New Zealand crew by 1 point. The Kiwis finished 1-4.
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
J.P. Morgan BAR also scored a come-from-behind win in its quarterfinal race of the match racing championship in testing conditions that kept all 45 of the sailors piqued trying to decipher the tricky wind conditions.
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
“It was one of those days when you want to survive because it would have been easy to pick up some bad results,” said Ainslie, the four-time Olympic Gold medalist who had the British Ambassador to Italy, Christopher Prentice, aboard as a guest racer. “The wind was so shifty today coming over the headland. That was the biggest challenge.”
Photo: © ACEA 2013/ Photo Gilles Martin-Raget
Reports from the race course on the Bay of Naples indicated that the wind was shifting from south/southwest to nearly west, an arc of some 35 degrees, and ranged in strength from 8 to 12 knots. Barker echoed Ainslie in finding the conditions challenging.

“There was no real rhythm to it today,” said Barker, an America’s Cup and Louis Vuitton Cup champion. “At times there were big gains to be had on the right side, and other times you could sail yourself into no wind. There were big gains and losses, particularly at the top of the course. I think we managed the course as well as we could today.”

Holding third place with 18 points is Chris Draper’s Luna Rossa Piranha crew. Draper, a world champion in the 49er class, is looking to recapture the lightning in a bottle that saw him win last year’s AC World Series Naples in a thrilling debut performance.

“I would say we had a good day,” said Draper. “We missed a couple of opportunities in the fleet racing and wound up with a 4-2. We’ll work on that for tomorrow. I didn’t trust my instincts enough when I should have and then tried to make things happen that weren’t there. But it was a good day.”

While the conditions were challenging, so was the race course for some of the new helmsmen in the fleet. Both Tom Slingsby of ORACLE TEAM USA and Roman Hagara of HS Racing were penalized for exceeding the course boundary.

In Slingsby’s case, it meant the difference between winning the first fleet race and placing second.

“We were off to a nice lead in the first race, but being a bit of a rookie in the class I didn’t see one of the boundaries and apparently we just crossed over it,” said Slingsby, the Olympic Gold medalist in the Laser class. “After that race I told the boys to remind me about the boundaries.”

In today’s match racing action, newcomer HS Racing, led by co-skippers Roman Hagara and Hans-Peter Steinacher, won the qualifier match in a “walkover” when opponent China Team was disqualified for failing to start properly.

Two of four quarterfinal matches were also held today. Luna Rossa Piranha defeated Artemis Racing White (Charlie Ekberg) in one match while J.P. Morgan BAR defeated Energy Team (Yann Guichard) in another.

The quarterfinals will conclude tomorrow with HS Racing squaring off against ORACLE TEAM USA SLINGSBY and Emirates Team New Zealand racing Luna Rossa Swordfish (Francesco Bruni).

“It’s really nice racing here in Napoli,” said Hagara, a double Olympic Gold medalist. “It’s really good sport and especially for the spectators. It’s unbelievable the amount of people who turned out. I've never seen so many people watching sailing.”

Tomorrow’s racing will be streamed live on YouTube worldwide (subject to territorial rights agreements) beginning at 14:00 local time (CEST).

America’s Cup World Series Naples Championship Standings

(Provisional, after 2 of 7 scheduled races)
1. J.P. Morgan BAR (Ben Ainslie) – 21 points
2. Emirates Team New Zealand (Dean Barker) – 20
3. Luna Rossa Piranha (Chris Draper) – 18
4. ORACLE TEAM USA (Tom Slingsby) – 16
5. Energy Team (Yann Guichard) – 14
6. Luna Rossa Swordfish (Francesco Bruni) – 14
7. Artemis Racing White (Charlie Ekberg) – 11
8. China Team (Mitch Booth) – 7
9. HS Racing (R. Hagara/H.S. Steinacher) – 7

America's Cup Media

Monday, April 15, 2013

Slingsby & Co Prepare To Take Naples

Oracle Team USA arrived in Naples over the weekend in preparation for this week’s America's Cup World Series AC45 regatta that kicks off on Tuesday. Led by Australian Skipper Tom Slingsby the crew includes Sam Newton (wing trimmer), Kinley Fowler (jib trimmer), Rome Kirby (runner) and Piet van Nieuwenhuijzen (bowman).
Photo: Guilain Grenier/Oracle Team USA
“All of our focus has been on the AC72 and on the days that we are not sailing on the AC72, we have been able to get out on the AC45s. We’ve had a few training sessions over the last couple of weeks which have been really important,” Slingsby said. 

“We’ll have a few days of training and hopefully improve as much as we can before racing starts. And I know to expect huge crowds. Last year was the biggest crowd I’ve seen in sailing so I’ll be ready for that, which will hopefully take away some of the nerves.”

Slingsby, who won a gold medal in the Laser class at the London 2012 Olympic Games, will helm the team’s entry, marking his first time as an ACWS skipper. His previous role in America's Cup World Series regattas has been as tactician.

“I’m really excited. I’ve been given an opportunity that I’m taking with both hands and trying to run with it. It won’t be easy. Any skipper in their first event in the AC45s hasn’t traditionally done too well, and it’s always quite tough. But, we’ll do our best. We’re a young, motivated team and we’ll see how it goes.”

Nine boats will compete in the ACWS Naples, including Artemis Racing, China Team, Emirates Team New Zealand, Energy Team, HS Racing, JP Morgan BAR, two crews from Luna Rossa and Oracle Team USA SLINGSBY. 

The first match race gets underway at on Thursday followed by fleet racing. The first match race for Slingsby and his crew will take place on Friday.

“Obviously we’ve been busy with the AC72, and our focus, for the most part, has been on the Cup. Training on the AC45s has been put on the back burner a bit,” said Rome Kirby. 

“We’ve all raced in World Series events but not as a team. We have been out training, but things change when you get around other boats. Now that the Naples event is here, we’re all excited to go racing again. We have a good team so we’ll see what happens. It should be fun," he added.

Lulu Roseman

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Team Synergy Win Melges 32 Audi Series in Gaeta

Gaeta, Italy
Sunday 15 April, 2013

From the moment that Valentin Zavadnikov's Team Synergy with tactician Tommaso Chieffi onboard arrived at the Gulf of Gaeta they commanded the event.
Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi/BPSE
As the final day of racing unfolded, Zavadnikov held off attacks from a combative, second place finisher Andrea Pozzi on Bombarda alongside of tactician Lorenzo Bressani to take the overall win.
Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi/BPSE
Zavadnikov, in addition to Chieffi were accompanied by Anton Sergeev, Pavel Mshenski, Konstantin Besputin, Alexander Ekimov, Valeriy Zatsarinskiy and Filippo Ardito as crew.
Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi/BPSE
Rounding out the top three was 2011 Series Champion Lanfranco Cirillo aboard Fantastica. Spain's Marc de Antonio's Bribon Movistar finished fourth, followed by Carlo Alberini's Calvi Network in fifth. Deneen Demourkas on Groovederci closed the event in sixth.
Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi/BPSE
It was a very disappointing day for Edoardo Lupi on Torpyone and Edoardo Pavesio's Fra Martina and as they fell from top three positions overnight to end the event in seventh and eighth.
Photo: © Carlo Borlenghi/BPSE
TOP TEN RESULTS (FINAL, After eight races and one discard)

1.) Valetin Zavadinkov/Tommaso Chieffi, Team Synergy; 3-1-3-8-3-6-4-[15] = 28
2.) Andrea Pozzi/Lorenzo Bressani, Bombarda; [10]-3-6-7-6-2-1-4 = 29
3.) Lanfranco Cirillo/Michele Paoletti, Fantastica; [12]-11-1-9-4-3-3-7 = 38
4.) Marc de Antonio/Gustavo Martinez Doreste, Bribon Movistar; [13]-12-7-4-8-1-7-3 = 42
5.) Carlo Alberini/Flavio Favini, Calvi Network; 2-14-9-11-2-[15]-5-1 = 44
6.) Deneen Demourkas/Mark Mendelblatt, Groovederci; 6-2-16-6-[16]-5-2-8 = 45
7.) Edoardo Lupi/Branko Brcin, Torpyone; 1-10-8-2-7-11-9-[14] = 48
8.) Edoardo Pavesio/Chris Rust, Fra Martina; 4 (ZULU)-4-2-3-11-13-[16]-12 = 52
9.) Vincenzo Onorato/Gabriele Benussi, Mascalzone Latino; 8-5-13-[15]-1-10-6-10 = 53
10.) Naofumi Kamei/Manuel Weiller, Mamma Aiuto!; 7-6-12-5(DPI)-5-8-8-[16] = 54

Joy Dunigan

José Matoso wins 2013 BMW Dragon European Championship in Cascais

Portugal’s Drago, José Matoso / Gustavo Lima / Frederico Melo, won the Cascais BMW Dragon European Championship 2013, which came to an end today in Cascais Bay. The crew was 19th in the seventh and final race and conquered the title. German Markus Wieser, last edition’s winner, was second, while the Dane Jens Christensen was third.
The event was sponsored by the Câmara Municipal de Cascais and BMW with the Clube Naval de Cascais and the International Dragon Association were the organizing authorities.
Photo: Fernando Algarvio
José Matoso,Gustavo Lima and Frederico Melo created another historic moment in the Portuguese sailing by winning the 2013 BMW Cascais Dragon European Championship. Drago’s crew claimed the title despite finishing 19th in the final race of the championship.
Photo: Fernando Algarvio
"I am very happy. Winning a European Championship is a unique moment. It was a very tough regatta and every point counted. Our result was decided in the last downwind leg of the final race," José Matoso said.
Photo: Fernando Algarvio
Nerves of steel were required as the excitement heated up and before the start of the seventh race only six points separated the top three teams.

The race committee was forced to abandon the first race of the day due to a light easterly wind and the 62 Dragons waited it out on the water.  Racing finally got underway once the the eight knot westerly wind kicked in for the seventh - and what turned out to be the final - race of the championship.

The British boat Aimee featuring Graham Bailey, Julia Bailey, Richard Powell and William Heritage took line honours and won the Corinthian title. The German crew of Markus Wieser, Sergey Pugachev and Georgii Leonchuk on Bunker Queen too second ahead of Germany’s Troika with Tim Ladehof,Tim Jesse, Arne Brugge.

Overall victory went to Drago followed by Bunker Queen and Out of Bounce in third.

Top Five after Seven races

1st Drago - José Matoso/Gustavo Lima/Frederico Melo – Portugal
2nd Bunker Queen - Marcus Wieser/Sergey Pugachev/Georgii Leonchuk - Alemanha
3rd Out of Bounce - Jens Christensen/Kim Andersen/Anders Bagger – Dinamarca
4th Fever – Klaus Diederichs/Andy Beadsworth/Jamie Lea – Grã-Bretanha
5th Dottore Amore – Ingo Ehrlicher/Werner Fritz/Thomas Auracher - Alemanha

Rodrigo Moreira Rato

Swiss Take The Title In SIngapore - Extreme Sailing Series - Act 2

Alinghi  has claimed overall victory at Act 2 of the Extreme Sailing Series in Singapore in a nail-biting finish in light conditions.
Photo: © Lloyd Images
Due to the lack of breeze, the Race Committee made the call to run non-point scoring exhibition races. With racing all but abandoned, when the wind did fill in the committee did a u-turn and held one more race to determine the final result. 
Photo: © Lloyd Images
According to the SAP analytics, at different stages during the final race, four teams including Alinghi (SUI), Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT), SAP Extreme Sailing (DEN) and Realteam (SUI) were all in podium positions with the constant shuffling of the leader board making it anyone’s game. 
Morgan Larson Photo: © Lloyd Images
Alinghi Skipper Morgan Larson, who held the lead since race six, steered his Swiss team to a well deserved win.
Photo: © Lloyd Images
“We’re ecstatic It’s just been a great week for the team. We had a great time here in Singapore which really helped us to perform. It’s a great city, with tough sailing conditions, but that’s the same for everybody and we just had that little bit of luck along the way and we also did a great job,” Larson said.
Photo: © Lloyd Images
Roman Hagara’s Red Bull Sailing Team were breathing down Larson's neck all day, but Hagara knew it was a big call to oust the Swiss in a single race and held his nerve to finish second.

“It’s always tough when you don’t know when the last race is going to happen, but it worked out well for us and it’s great for the team. They did a great job on the boat. I think they really deserved it and it’s great for the overall standing now.” 
Photo: © Lloyd Images
Red Bull Sailing Team are now tied on points with Alinghi at the top of the overall standings.

Four days of challenging, light winds on Marina Bay required patience, nerves of steel and a cool head from the Extreme 40 sailors, which SAP Extreme Sailing Team had is spades. The Danish squad came into the final day tied on points with The Wave, Muscat in third place after their best performance on the Series to date yesterday. A third place in today’s race saw the team secure their first ever podium position in third. 
Photo: © Lloyd Images
“It’s fantastic, I think it is a real milestone for SAP Extreme Sailing Team and we’re really happy with a podium finish here. We’ve been looking for that for a long time.” Co-Skipper and tactician Rasmus Kostner. 

The icing on the cake for the Danish team is to upgrade from seventh to fourth on the overall Series leader board.
Photo: © Lloyd Images
Jérome Clerc, in what is only his second Extreme 40 Act at the helm of Realteam, may have had a hard start to the regatta finishing the second day in seventh place, but over the last two days the 2012 D35 champion hit the accelerate button and a second place in today’s race ultimately led his team to a fourth place finish overall. 
Photo: © Lloyd Images
“We really didn’t expect to see these kind of results so early on in the season but it’s really great. We’ve made a lot of improvements since Oman, the crew did a great job the last two days and I think after today we can confirm we are really improving as a team. We can play against the best for the podium position in the light wind conditions, so now we will have to see if we can manage this in Qingdao,” Clerc said.
Photo: © Lloyd Images
The biggest surprise of the day came from The Wave, Muscat renowned for their ability to fight back on the final day. Today’s single race wasn’t enough for skipper Leigh McMillan and a poor start ultimately cost them the podium. 

“That race was all decided on the start. We thought we had a good strategy, it just didn’t quite pan-out for us. The fleet got away and there were no options to come back into the race so it was decided there and then,” McMillan said.

Extreme Sailing Series 2013 Act 2, Singapore standings after Day 4, 23 races (14.04.13)
Position / Team / Points

1st Alinghi (SUI) Morgan Larson, Stuart Pollard, Pierre-Yves Jorand, Nils Frei, Yves Detrey 198 points.
2nd Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) Roman Hagara, Hans Peter Steinacher, Matthew Adams, Pierre Le Clainche, Graeme Spence 163 points.
3rd SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) Jes Gram-Hansen, Rasmus Kostner, Pete Cumming, Mikkel Røssberg, Nicolai Sehested 161 points.
4th Realteam (SUI) Jérome Clerc, Bruno Barbarin, Arnaud Psarofaghis, Cédric Schmidt, Bryan Mettraux 159 points.
5th The Wave, Muscat (OMA) Leigh McMillan, Ed Smyth, Pete Greenhalgh, Musab Al Hadi, Hashim Al Rashdi 153 points.
6th Team Korea (KOR) Peter Burling, Blair Tuke, Mark Bulkeley, Sungwok Kim, Sung Ahn Jung 144 points.
7th GAC Pindar (NZL) Will Tiller, Brad Farrand, Stewart Dodson, Harry Thurston, Matt Steven 143 points.
8th Team Aberdeen Singapore (SIN) Scott Glen Sydney, Robert Greenhalgh, Andrew Walsh, Justin Wong, Rick Peacock 127 points.

Extreme Sailing Series 2013 overall standings after Act 2, Singapore
Position / Team / Points
1st Alinghi (SUI) 18 points.
2nd Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) 18 points.
3rd The Wave, Muscat (OMA) 16 points.
4th SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) 12 points.
5th Team Korea (KOR) 11 points.
6th Team X Invitational 10 points.
7th Realteam (SUI) 10 points.
8th GAC Pindar (NZL) 9 points.

Extreme Racing Series Media