Thursday, June 27, 2013

Britannia Rules at RC44 Sweden Cup, Marstrand - Day 3

For the third day of racing at the RC44 Sweden Cup in Marstrand the wind kicked in and with conditions not dissimilar to The Solent the British boats reigned supreme. Aegir Racing, Nika and Synergy all won races and a consistent day by Team Aqua (GBR) has catapulted them to the top of the leaderboard at the halfway stage of the regatta. Team Aegir’s (GBR) top performance moved them into second overall and day one leaders, Peninsula Petroleum (GBR), slipped back to third.
After a general recall racing got underway in a building 14 knot southerly breeze. The 12 strong fleet split in two up the first beat, as they converged on the top mark, it was the boats favouring the left who had the advantage. 
Massimo Barranco and Flavio Favini onboard Team Italia, rounded first closely followed by Brian Benjamin’s Aegir Racing. With the breeze increasing the British team took the advantage, Team Italia gybed inside Aegir at the leeward gate but were unable to get the overlap. Aegir’s tactician Ian Williams, who knows these waters well having match raced in the Stena Cup on many occasions, defended well for the rest of the race to finish just ahead of the Italians. Team Aqua recovered from seventh to third and Artemis Racing slotted into sixth after trailing the fleet for much of the race.
By the start of race two the breeze had steadily increased to 16-18 knots with gusts over 20. Katusha were called over early at the start. After another close beat the first three to round the windward mark were Team Nika, Aegir Racing and Team Aqua. Nika took advantage of some clear air and proved to have good boat speed by extending her lead to over 200 metres by the finish line.  Team Aqua passed Aegir to take second while Brian Benjamin’s team hung on to post their second top three result of the day.
For the day's final race, conditions remained at16-18 knots of breeze with a big swell. At the top mark Aleph Racing led from Team Italia who rounded overlapped with Synergy. The Russian team gybed early and tactician Ed Baird chose the favoured leeward gate to head right up the next beat followed by Aqua hot on his heels. Synergy took control to win the race.
Team Aqua proved the most consistent team of the day, scoring 3,2,2, to giving them a six-point lead over fellow Brits, Aegir Racing, whose 1,3,4 scoreline moves them up into second overall on equal points with day one leaders Peninsula Petroleum.
“We knew it would be tricky with the breeze building and the waves confused. Chris [Bake] had a good day on the helm; the crew did an excellent job of keeping the boat consistent. We got away unscathed damage wise today considering the conditions, but for sure you have to push hard and if you make one small mistake it can be disastrous. I think a couple of boats blew up shoots because of that. We had a small wipe out on the last run of the last race and we were lucky not to blow our shoot, but you have to push and be on the edge, but if you cross the line it can go bad,” Team Aqua's tactician Cameron Appleton  said.

RC44 Sweden Cup Fleet Race Results (After six races)

1. Team Aqua 11 3 1 3 2 2 – 22
2. Aegir Racing 6 6 8 1 3 4 – 28
3. Peninsula Petroleum Sailing Team 2 2 7 7 5 5 – 28
4. Synergy Russian Sailing Team 7 4 2 12 4 1 – 30
5. Artemis Racing 3 1 9 6 8 6 – 33
6. Team Italia 1 9 6 2 10 8 – 36
7. Aleph Racing 8 10 3 5 12 3 – 41
8. Katusha 12 5 5 4 9 9 – 44
9. Team Nika 5 7 10 10 1 12 – 45
10. Ironbound 9 12 4 8 6 7 – 46
11. Bronenosec Sailing Team 4 8 12 9 11 10 – 54
12. RUS7 Sail Racing Team 10 11 11 11 7 11 – 61

RC44 Media

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