HOME MOVIES – Cross the Atlantic ocean in under 6 minutes with an average family onboard an average boat but having an un-average great time – 16.5 days to cross. This is ‘real world’ sailing for the average sailor. Are you up for it?
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VOR – It wasn’t the arrival they wanted on Leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race – but despite the frustration, they managed a smile or two.
As Team SCA finally reached Abu Dhabi in the middle of the night to a chorus of cheers from their adoring fans, who had been waiting patiently in the dark for the arrival of their heroes, the sigh of relief was almost audible.
Crossing the line at 2223 UTC, 0123 local time in Abu Dhabi, celebrations on board were muted – every lost mile, every lost minute, etched in their exhausted faces.
And having finally ended this tricky and drawn-out leg, the girls were looking forward to some much deserved rest and recuperation before the start of the next leg to Sanya on January 3.
“It’s tough when you can’t see anyone,” admits navigator Libby Greenhalgh.
“But in the first leg, we were miles behind MAPFRE and we came back to beat them.
“You know that things can always change. There was a chance coming into the Gulf that we possibly could’ve caught them up, but it was a question of timing. If we’d have got there three or six hours earlier it would’ve been a different kettle of fish.”
She continues. “In two legs now, we’ve started so well, and we’ve not finished so great.
“Hopefully we’ll have a good break, some time to reflect, and come back firing on all cylinders – to show the world what we can do.”
Onboard reporter Corinna Halloran spoke for them all in her last blog from the boat on the final day before they completed the leg in 25 days 6 hours and 23 minutes.
“We are here to race, not to watch,” she wrote, the defiance reflected in every word. “We are here to lead, not to follow. Yes, we are paving a road for the future of everyday women who dare to dream big.
“But we are also competitive athletes and coming in last, regardless, is always tough.”
By the time they had crossed the finish line not long after midnight in barely a breath of wind, they had mustered some smiles to greet their welcoming shore crew, decked out in blue and magenta and holding aloft Team SCA battle flags.
By three-quarters of the way through the 5,200 nautical mile leg, it was a game of catch-up with the five other boats still in the stage after Team Vestas Wind’s grounding.
“It’s still a learning process. We’re all learning together, applying what we learned from Leg 1 and putting that into practice for Leg 2,” said skipper Sam Davies.
“Every condition is a good opportunity to keep learning and keep making the boat go a bit faster. We made a navigational mistake which put us behind and then it became a procession. That was hard.
“We’re focusing on everything. It’s all new to us. Our debriefs are packed with everything you can think of.”
“The hard bits (as a skipper) are the communications, maybe that’s because I come from single-handed sailing. There are a lot of things I’m trying to learn and trying to do better.”
Nobody said offshore sailing was easy and certainly not the Volvo Ocean Race. But these women will never give up. They will be back, wiser, tougher and more determined than ever.
Team SCA finish time: 22 23 34 UTC / Elapsed time: 025d 06h 23m 34s
PHOTO BY LILY QIAN – ABOVE IMAGE MESSAGE BY THE TEAM: We can not be more in love with this lovely illustration from Lily Qian, a New York artist who made this beautiful piece for the team. Read what inspired her to collaborate with us: My fiancee loves sailing and he took me sailing for the first time this year in the Chesapeake Bay. Ever since that trip I love it as well and want to know everything about sailing. He told me about the around-the-world races and when I heard about the Volvo Ocean Race and that there is an all woman team in the race, I began following the preparations and the first leg closely. I am inspired by the individual sailors, their stories, and the whole team effort to make this project happen. I’m also very impressed by the dynamics of these boats and the strength and performance of the team to handle this pink beast! http://www.lily-qian.com/
SYDNEY HOBART RACE – In what is touted to be one of the most hotly contested Rolex Sydney Hobart line honours battles in recent history, there’s been plenty of on-water supermaxi activity over the last week. So for those looking for some warm-up action to whet the appetite while we wait for Boxing Day to arrive, here’s a video taster from the Bow Caddy team featuring Comanche duking it out with Wild Oats XI and Perpetual Loyal on Sydney Harbour. ENJOY!
AC NEWS – See what the teams are saying about the announcement of Bermuda as the venue for the 2017 America’s Cup. Is it propaganda or for real? Vote in our XS Poll over there on the right… will Bermuda produce a better, worse or same event as the last America’s Cup?
What they said:
Jimmy Spithill, ORACLE TEAM USA: “It’s fantastic. I’ve spent a bit of time there and really enjoyed the racing, the people. We bring a whole family. It’s not just the athletes. It’s the shore team, the engineers, their families, their kids. The cool thing about Bermuda is, if you live in Bermuda, you are associated with the nautical theme, with the water. And that’s our life. So that integration of the whole America’s Cup community is going to be a very nice fit.”
Ben Ainslie, Ben Ainslie Racing: “We’re absolutely delighted. I’ve had some great experiences racing there with the Gold Cup on and off the water. It’s a great venue, so I’m looking forward to it.”
Nathan Outteridge, Artemis Racing: “Since the Cup ended last year we’ve kept a strong team together doing design and sailing in our AC45s. But now that we know the venue we can study the weather patterns for that place. Hopefully we’ll get there as much as we can to sail there in the May, June, July weather window to understand what will be secret to winning the America’s Cup. In every Cup there is one key thing that gets you over the line… So we’ll be focusing our efforts on understanding what the weather range is and working on designing a fast boat.”
Kevin Shoebridge, Emirates Team New Zealand: “Bermuda is a fantastic sailing venue. It’s an island with a huge maritime history and I think there will be engagement by all the Bermuda public to support the event, so I think that will be fantastic.”
Franck Cammas, Team France: “I’ve never been to Bermuda, but I hear it’s a good place to race and sail and it’s good for the show and the television. It’s not so far from Europe so it’s good for us and our sponsors to be able to see the race.”
Max Sirena, Luna Rossa Challenge: “It’s great news. Our team is very happy. We can focus on Bermuda now. It’s a great place to sail. It’s something new that should give us an opportunity to move forward in this new evolution of the America’s Cup. We’ll start to plan for the next couple of years now and we look forward to moving there as soon as we can.”
CRUISING – Sailing with a poled out headsail on one side and your main secured on a preventer on the other is a very stable and comfortable set up for long distance downwind sailing, and it’s how most cruisers cover stress-free long miles. Check out how to set this up safely and the key dos and don’ts.
WOW – In this week’s World on Water US Super-Maxi Comanche had its first race in the CYCA SOLAS Big Boat Challenge on Sydney Harbour, the final Act for 2014 and the ExSS boats were also crashing round the harbour, the medals are won at the ISAF Sailing World Cup in Melbourne, the Stars starred in the Bahamas, the PWA Dream Cup was in tropical French Noumea and Team Brunel was first home in Abu Dhabi in the controversial Leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race.
XS WORLD NEWS – Stay updated! Go to our XS World News page for sailing news from 40 different Sailing News websites. We keep adding links, RSS feeds and forums so you can get sailing news and events from around the world. The page is constantly being updated everyday and every hour thru RSS feeds. Check back a couple of times daily for up to minute news. XS Sailing -Where Sailing Lives!
EXTREME SAILING – It is mission accomplished for Ernesto Bertarelli’s Swiss team Alinghi, as Morgan Larson and the team grabbed victory with both hands at Act 8 Sydney, presented by Land Rover, and with it the 2014 Extreme Sailing Series™ title – and Larson’s words say it all:
“We’ve had an amazing season with an amazing team. To win the season and the Act on the last day in the conditions we had here in Sydney, which is the best sailing venue in the world, is a special moment that’s going to take a long time to sink in. The level of confidence that we have on our boat just made me realise I can win anything with these guys. This is the best feeling I’ve had all year and probably in the whole of my sailing career, so I’m going to cherish it.”
With the breeze cranking around Sydney Harbour at 15 knots and the brilliant Aussie sun beating down, racing was as good as it gets and the thousands of spectators witnessed not only the best racing of the year, but also a capsize for their home team GAC Pindar in the sixth race of the day, when damage to their rudders following a collision caused them to lose control of their Extreme 40. Coming into the Act, Morgan Larson, Stuart Pollard, Pierre-Yves Jorand, Nils Frei, Yves Detrey and Anna Tunnicliffe, were the hot favourites to win the Series – with four Act wins already under their belts and having never finished worse than third – they just had to play it safe and finish sixth or above. Comfortable going into the final double points race of the Series victory, winning the Act was the challenge, and Leigh McMillan and his team on The Wave, Muscat came into battle determined, flexing their muscles and giving it their all. Solid boat handling throughout the day meant the Act was almost theirs, denied only by the final double pointer, and the two-times Series winning skipper picking up second in Sydney, and in 2014.
“It didn’t go how we wanted, but it’s been a great season and a fantastic effort by the whole team – the shore team, our coach and the crew. It hasn’t been easy, we had to dig deep on many occasion this year and Alinghi were just to good for us. They are relentless and were more consistent. Focused on this event, it’s been fantastic. It’s great to be part of it and beating a lot of the best guys in the sport. We’ll be back next year, and absolutely fighting for the win. He got the jump this year, we will try and take it back next year.”
In their second year on the circuit, Realteam have proved themselves a force to be reckoned with, and today’s battle for third in Sydney was between them, J.P. Morgan BAR and Oman Air. Tagged the ‘light air specialists’, Jerome Clerc and his team proved they are much more than that, and four race wins in Sydney and a consistent set of results secured them not only third place Down Under – but third place in 2014.
“It has been an incredible season for us. What we have achieved this year is huge. We were the rookies of the circuit and this result just shows what an amazing year we have had. It has been great to sail on this racecourse in Sydney, the conditions were perfect and this podium just makes all our hard work worth while.”
Sailing with the confidence of a man who has been racing in the circuit for years, Tom Slingsby was unstoppable today. An extraordinary performance by him and the team on Oman Air saw them clock up 70 points from a possible 90 today, and they were the fastest average team on the water according to the SAP Sailing analytics, helping them on their way to fourth place in Sydney – no doubt turning a few heads amongst the more experienced fleet as well as receiving the biggest cheers from their home crowd.
For Slingsby’s fellow country man and Olympic champion Nathan Wilmot, their regatta was cut short following a collision with Realteam as the Aussies tried to cross in front of the Swiss, misjudged it and got their port rudder knocked off, leaving them without steering and no control of the boat, resulting in the capsize. Wilmot, who won Olympic gold in 2008 in the 470 class was disappointed to have his event cut short.
“We were hit hard, with the impact just ripping off the rudder and then the capsize was imminent but everyone is fine. It’s a disappointing end to the week for us but it’s been incredible sailing on Sydney Harbour and we’ve enjoyed all the support from our home fans”.
Sydney joins a list of spectacular and iconic locations as an Extreme Sailing Series Host Venue, that this year has included a whirlwind tour of the globe taking in Singapore, Muscat (Oman), Qingdao (China), Saint Petersburg (Russia), Cardiff (UK), Istanbul (Turkey) and Nice on the French Riviera. 11 top international teams have battled in one of the most hard-fought Series to date, with five of them claiming podium positions throughout the year.
The eighth season of the Extreme Sailing Series comes to a close after 231 races, with the 2015 global tour confirmed to kick start in just over seven weeks, in Singapore – the first of eight Host Venues for this pioneering Stadium Racing circuit, that gets better ever year.
What they Said:
Tom Slingsby, Oman Air:
“We did as well as we could have done today, and the points worked out well. The atmosphere out there was great, with all the spectator boats, the people on the shore cheering as you went passed was pretty amazing. After coming last in day one to come back and win the next two days to get fourth overall is fantastic – I wish I had adapted to these boats one day earlier! It was tricky the first day, I felt I was out of my league.”
Paul Campbell-James, J.P. Morgan BAR:
“Sydney is without a doubt the best venue the Extreme Sailing Series has ever been to. You can’t beat the backdrop, you can’t beat the breeze, the locals… the whole package is perfect Extreme Sailing Series conditions.”
Phil Robertson, Gazprom Team Russia:
“The last few events have been good for us and we’ve definitely improved as a team. We keep getting stronger and stronger and we had a pretty good event here in Sydney. We had a really strong day today, so that’s a great way to end the season, and hopefully we can carry it on into next year. It was awesome conditions here, lots of wind and today was just perfect especially with that sea breeze direction, we couldn’t have asked for more.”
Roman Hagara, Red Bull Sailing Team:
“Our highlight of the year was Nice and we had a really good battle with the top guys and we were close behind J.P. Morgan BAR. The final Act in Sydney was definitely another highlight, coming back to the place where we won our Olympic gold medal. We had quite a good start to the season and then in Qingdao we had a big crash with Alinghi and we dropped from fourth place to ninth I think, and after that it didn’t work out so well for us. I think it was still in our heads and we weren’t aggressive enough. Towards the end of the season everything worked out a little bit better, but still we weren’t where we should have been.”
Jes Gram Hansen, SAP Extreme Sailing Team:
“It has been a though year for us, that’s no secret. We had some good regattas but also some though ones, that’s the way it is. We have a strong team, there are a lot of good sailors in the team and I am sure we can come back stronger, that’s definitely our goal.”
Extreme Sailing Series™ Act 8 Sydney presented by Land Rover standings after Day 4, 26 races (14.12.14)
Position / Team / Points
1st Alinghi (SUI) Morgan Larson, Stuart Pollard, Pierre-Yves Jorand, Nils Frei, Yves Detrey 189 points.
2nd The Wave, Muscat (OMA) Leigh McMillan, Sarah Ayton, Pete Greenhalgh, Ed Smyth, Nasser Al Mashari 177 points.
3rd Realteam by Realstone (SUI) Jérôme Clerc, Arnaud Psarofaghis, Bruno Barbarin, Bryan Mettraux, Thierry Wasem 168 points.
4th Oman Air (OMA) Tom Slingsby, Ted Hackney, Kyle Langford, Joey Newton, Ali Al Balashi 157 points.
5th J.P. Morgan BAR (GBR) Ben Ainslie, Nick Hutton, Paul Campbell-James, Bleddyn Mon, Matt Cornwell 156 points.
6th Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) Roman Hagara, Hans Peter Steinacher, Mark Bulkeley, Shaun Mason, Stewart Dodson 151 points.
7th SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) Jes Gram-Hansen, Rasmus Køstner, Thierry Douillard, Christian Kamp, Brad Farrand 145 points.
8th Gazprom Team Russia (RUS) Igor Lisovenko, Phil Robertson, Matt Adams, Pete Cumming, Aleksey Kulakov 143 points.
9th Groupama sailing team (FRA) Franck Cammas, Tanguy Cariou, Romain Motteau, Thierry Fouchier, Hervé Cunningham 124 points.
10th GAC Pindar (AUS) Nathan Wilmot, Seve Jarvin, Matt Mitchell, Tyson Lamond, James Wierzbowski 90 points.
Extreme Sailing Series™ 2014 overall standings
Position / Team / Points
1st Alinghi (SUI) 85 points.
2nd The Wave, Muscat (OMA) 75 points.
3rd Realteam by Realstone (SUI) 61 points.
4th Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL) 49 points.
5th J.P. Morgan BAR (GBR) 49 points.
6th Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) 40 points.
7th Oman Air (OMA) 38 points.
8th SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) 36 points.
9th Gazprom Team Russia (RUS) 30 points.
10th Groupama sailing team (FRA) 26 points.
11th GAC Pindar (AUS) 13 points.
ISAF WORLD CUP – The wind picked up for the Finn, Nacra 17 and 470 Medal Racing at ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne as the World Cup honours and ISAF Sailing World Cup Final Abu Dhabi spots were decided. CHECK OUT THE UPPER VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS!
Tom Burton (AUS) and Alison Young (GBR) hit the right note in the Laser and Laser Radial at ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne as they took out the top honours and qualification spots to the 2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Final. CHECK OUT THE LOWER VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS
ISAF WORLD CUP UPDATE:
A second and final set of medal winning performances brought the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup -Melbourne to a close on Sunday December 14.
Some of the day’s highlights on the Stadium course included Tom Burton’s trifecta of gold medal Laser wins at this World Cup event, the Australian identical twins out-sailing the Portuguese brothers in the 470s and the final epic Finn grudge match between Great Britain’s Ed Wright and Oli Tweddell that went the Brit’s way.
Racing began in cool and gusty southerly 15-20 knot winds on Port Phillip Bay and similar to yesterday’s first round of Medal Races dialed back to light and patchy by the time the top ten Laser Medal Race contenders took their starting positions.
Unlike Saturday the fan cranked back up again to a consistent 17 knot and the Medal Race sequence carried on without delay through to perfect regatta closer, the final Men’s and Women’s Kiteboard Medal Race in brilliant summer sunshine and 20 knots.
Hundreds of competitors are this evening making their way home, whether driving a couple of kilometres to a nearby suburb or boarding international flights back to one of the 33 countries with their flag flying proudly at the longstanding World Cup host, Sandringham Yacht Club.
The next events of international significance on the calendar for the region are the International 14 World Championship at Geelong and the McDougall and McConaghy Moth World Championships at Sorrento, both in January.
Miami, USA hosts the second stop of the six part World Cup, from January 26-31, 2015.
The following sailors have qualified in Melbourne either as class winners or the home country representative for the Abu Dhabi Final, from October 29 – November 1, 2015;
Nacra 17 – Jason Waterhouse and Lisa Darmanin (AUS)
Men’s 470 – Alexander and Patrick Conway (AUS)
Women’s 470 – Sasha Ryan and Amelia Catt (AUS)
Finn – Edward Wright (GBR) and Oliver Tweddell (AUS)
Laser – Tom Burton (AUS)
Laser Radial – Alison Young (GBR) and Ashley Stoddart (AUS)
Australian Sailing Team (AST) athletes and cousins, Jason Waterhouse and Lisa Darmanin, were the powerhouse multihull crew at the ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne. Their ample point advantage going into the Medal Race meant the gold medal was already theirs. Up the track from them in the Medal Race and before a full house at Sandringham Yacht Club, a thrilling sail-off for second unfolded.
“We had a big point advantage so we just went out there to get around the course and stay out of trouble,” said Darmanin. “We tried to sail our own race and put a bit of action in there for the spectators. We are really happy to come home with the gold; it’s a really good way to start the season, to get back on top of the podium.
“I was pretty disappointed we couldn’t make Abu Dhabi, now we know we’ve qualified it will be nice to put that one on the calendar and to lock it in,” Darmanin added.
The dynamics in a two-person boat can’t be underrated. Waterhouse says Lisa’s structured approach and his natural instinct are complementary. “We know the dynamic is a huge thing, we see it as an advantage for us.” From this first round of the 2015 World Cup Waterhouse says their takeaway is trialing new sail, rig and board configurations, and their heavy air boat speed.
Olympic silver medallists and AST teammates, Darren Bundock and Nina Curtis, finished silver medallists in Melbourne by one point. “It’s our first week back since the championships in Santander,” said ‘Bundy’. “This week has been a good mix of conditions. We still have a few challenges to go. Jason and Lisa are sailing really well and that lifts the bar for us.”
Euan McNichol and Lucinda Whitty from the Australian Sailing Squad (ASS) finished bronze medallists.
It was game on between brothers Alexander and Patrick Conway (AUS/ASS) and the Portuguese team of Antonio and Joao Rosa in the Medal Race. The wind was up to 15 knots from the SW by the time the men’s and women’s fleet lined up for the final battle.
The Rosas had the advantage at the start, but the Conways went tack-for-tack with them to gain the advantage by the top mark the second time around. From there they blasted down the last run and across the finish line, leaving the rest of the fleet well clear.
Their Medal Race victory assured them of the first Men’s 470 qualifying slot for the 2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Final in Abu Dhabi in 2015.
“It’s been a very good battle all week; we have been very close to each other every race. It’s been exciting, and interesting,” Patrick said. “We are excited and relieved. It’s really exciting for us to have qualified. It’s another regatta where it’s going to be the top 15 or 20 boats in the world, it’s going to be a Medal Race every single race.”
The Rosa brothers held onto second place overall and Angus Galloway and Joshua Dawson (AUS) finished third.
It might have been a two-boat race, but Sasha Ryan and Amelia Catt (AUS) still pushed their hardest racing in among the men’s fleet. They won the Medal Race while two-time Australian Olympian Jeni Lidgett-Danks and her crew Jaime Ryan (AUS) finished with a U flag penalty.
Both Ryan and Catt were surprised by the news that their result secured them the first Women’s 470 qualifying spot for the 2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Final in Abu Dhabi.
“We’ve only just teamed up earlier in the year so it has all been about processes and building the team at this regatta,” Ryan said. “We feel like a lot of things have come together this week and it’s been good to race with the boys. I think they’re a little bit more aggressive than the women usually. It’s been a real challenge for us, but really good fun too,” Ryan added.
“It’s awesome to qualify for the World Cup final and we’re really excited. It’s a big bonus for us and something to work towards over the next year.”
The contest in the big man’s division at the World Cup between Ed Wright, his mate and former countryman now living in and sailing for Australia, Oli Tweddell, and 21 year-old Jake Lilley captivated the boat park and the following international audience.
Prior to the pointscore leader Ed Wright (GBR) and second-placed Oli Tweddell (AUS) leaving the boat ramp, the housemates for the week openly discussed their strategy and the fact they were both gunning for the win. Tweddell, the hometown hero, was sick of finishing runner-up at his local regatta and Wright, on form in a borrowed boat, had no qualms relegating Tweddell to the silver medal position for the fourth consecutive year.
“Oli was the only threat I had to cover. I didn’t care about winning the Medal Race, but I did!” Wright said on his way to the medal presentation at SYC.
On the conditions Wright said, “the first upwind was really lovely with breeze up to 20 knots, then it dropped out. I was quite upset because when we were out there practising before the start the downwind conditions were epic. In the race I managed to hold onto the lead and cover Oli quite tightly on the on the second beat, then pulled away in some nice waves. I chartered a boat and the old girl went well this week…. I think I might take her home with me,” he joked.
“I should have given him a worse boat, it was already leaking but I should have made sure it leaked a bit more,” offered the good natured Tweddell, silver medallist and Australia’s country qualifier for Abu Dhabi. “Ed sailed really all week he didn’t drop out of the top two, he deserved the win. I’ve been working on quite a few things with my coaches and on my fitness. I’ve got a lot more work to do to get to where I want to be. I’m stoked about qualifying for Abu Dhabi.”
Tweddell is an ISAF Sailing World Cup – Melbourne ambassador with this message, “Melbourne has hosted a great event yet again. It’s great to see so many international sailors here racing in the full range of Melbourne conditions. Hopefully next year we can get more of the overseas Finn boys and internationals from other classes.”
Third overall at the end of the Finn’s eight race series was Jake Lilley (AST).
World number one Laser sailor Tom Burton wore the yellow pointscore leader vest from day two onwards. Lemon yellow turned to yellow gold when Burton stood on the dais to accept the highest honour at the opening round of the 2015 World Cup series, his third consecutive gold medal in Melbourne.
Burton had the series and his trifecta of wins sewn-up prior to the Medal Race, commenting, “it was pretty interesting, we launched in 20 knots and big waves and winds and we were watching the Finns duke it out then the breeze shifted and died. We raced at 5 knots or even less. I sailed well all week, Abu Dhabi was a good lead up for here. It’s good to qualify for Abu Dhabi next year and be able to defend the title.”
Second placed by 21 points was ASS athlete Matt Wearn who believes Burton is beatable. “I think I’ve proved he can be beaten. We were closer in the stronger winds. Another year of sailing is my best shot. Today was light airs and close racing. I’m happy to consolidate for second and to go into next year fighting and ready to take him [Tom] on. Things get heated out on the water as you’d expect when it’s tight racing but on shore we are good mates and it’s great for the team to have good training partners going into 2016.”
Third was New Zealand’s Michael Bullot.
The final Olympic class Medal Race for the 10 Laser Radial sailors from the qualifying series went head-to-head in a fast race. Alison Young (GBR) came to the start line with an unassailable pointscore lead, but there was a good chance of the minor podium places shuffling as the talented fleet took off in fresh conditions.
“It was quite a tricky Medal Race we had there,” Young suggested. “It was pretty light beforehand and then the breeze pumped in and there were pretty big gains on the right hand side. It was quite tense on the first beat,” Young said.
On securing a place in the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final she added, “it’s a nice way to end the year, or start the season, depending on how you want to look at it. I am pleased about how the week has gone. I will take the lessons from here forward.”
Holding onto second overall after a disappointing final race was Tatiana Drozdovskaya (BLR) and the bronze medal went to Norway’s Line Flem Host.
Ashley Stoddart (AUS) was the best placed Australian, finishing fourth overall and qualifying for the Laser Radial class at the Abu Dhabi Final given her country hosted this World Cup round.
The Men’s and Women’s Kiteboard fleet put on a spectacular exhibition in the pressured-up conditions on the Stadium course right in front SYC where those all packed up and enjoying some downtime gathered.
The top four in the Men’s 22-board fleet went through to the Medal Race. The fleet just couldn’t break Riccardo Leccese’s title hold, the Italian surging to take his tenth consecutive race win of the series and the gold medal.
In second place was last year’s winner, Florian Gruber (GER) and third was Ivan Doronin (RUS).
The Women’s fleet was dominated by Ariane Imbert (FRA). In second place was Australia’s Lisa Hickman who was determined to compete today having missed the rest of the series nursing a tendon strain. Third overall went to fellow Aussie Gina Hewson.
Kiteboarding was added to the Sailing World Cup after the ISAF Council approved their inclusion at the 2013 ISAF Annual Conference in Muscat, Sultanate of Oman. The Abu Dhabi Final last month was the first time Kiteboarding was added to the program.
Kiteboarding is part of the Melbourne Sailing World Cup and kiters will be at Weymouth and Portland, Great Britain and Abu Dhabi, UAE and possibly other rounds.
Full list of results: www.sailing.org/worldcup/results/
By Lisa Ratcliff
18 FOOTERS – Ash Rooklyn replaced Jonathan Whitty on Lumix and scored his first 18ft Skiff win as a skipper when he teamed with Aron Everett and Daniel Nixon to win the Syd. Barnett Memorial Trophy race on Sydney Harbour today.
Lumix grabbed the lead after rounding the first set of windward marks and was never in any real danger of defeat as the team sailed faultlessly around the North-East course.
Appliancesonline.com.au (Micah Lane, Tom Anderson, Paul Montague) was 33s behind the winner, in second place, with Compassmarkets.com (Keagan York, Greg Dixon, Matt Stenta) a further 1m25s back in thid place.
From the scratch start, Thurlow Fisher Lawyers (Michael Coxon) led narrowly over a group of challengers including Smeg (David Witt), De’Longhi (Simon Nearn), Coopers 62-Rag & Famish Hotel (Jack Macartney) and Appliancesonline.com.au.
Mojo Wine, skippered by Australian 16 Footer champion Lee Knapton, was also well placed at the start but a gear problem forced last week’s winner back to the tail of the fleet.
Smeg was the first skiff to its windward mark (blue) but Lumix took advantage of a red buoy mark rounding to grab a narrow lead as spinnakers were set for the run to the wing mark off Shark Island.
Thurlow Fisher Lawyers had to travel further to the white buoy, which allowed Appliancesonline.com.au and Compassmarkets.com to slip inside.
Rooklyn and his young team showed their class as they sailed a perfect course to open up a clear break over De’Longhi, Appliancesonline, Compassmarkets, Smeg, Fisher & Paykel (Rob Flanagan) and Thurlow Fisher Lawyers.
These placings remained unchanged at the bottom mark (end of first lap) where Lumix held a 45s margin over De’Longhi.
At the second set of windward marks, Lumix lead had blown out to 1m10s over Appliancesonline and Compassmarkets which were only secs. Apart.
Smeg was fourth and clearly ahead of a large group on the second spinnaker run.
Over the final lap of the course, the top four positions remained unchanged.
The Kitchen Maker (John Sweeny) finished in fifth place, ahead of Fisher & Paykel, De’Longhi and Asko Appliances (Marcus Ashley-Jones).
Gotta Love It 7 didn’t start in today’s race as Seve Jarvin and his crew were involved in the final of the Extreme Sailing Series off the Opera House.
Seve’s day didn’t work out too well on PINDAR.
Today’s result sheet and nine images are attached.
This was the final race before the Christmas-New Year break. Racing will resume on 11 January with Race 1 of the NSW Championship.
THE J.J. GILTINAN 18ft SKIFF CHAMPIONSHIP WILL BE SAILED FROM 14-22 FEBRUARY 2015.
Video coverage and live stream is on www.18footerstv.com
Australian 18 Footers League
EXTREME SAILING – It was an action-packed, full pressure day on Sydney Harbour for the Extreme 40s at the penultimate day’s racing of the 2014 global tour, where the grudge match between Alinghi and The Wave, Muscat was rife. Two race wins for the Swiss to the Omanis one, means it’s advantage Alinghi as they head into tomorrow’s final day – with their fellow countrymen Realteam in second place and The Wave, Muscat just two points back in third. Cool as ever, Larson commented:
“We came out fighting and feel like we got hold of the event again. There’s still one more day to go and I think history has proven that things can get shaken up pretty quick so we’ve got to keep the focus on the win. It’s the end of the season, it’s been a long year, but now’s the time to sail at the highest level we can.”
The double-defending champions on The Wave, Muscat have to win in Sydney and Alinghi has to be sixth or worse for the British Olympian McMillan and his team to make it a hatrick of Series wins – a tough but not impossible ask. The team’s tactician Sarah Ayton, who sailed at the Sydney Olympic Games as a training partner before going onto compete and win gold at the 2004 and 2008 Games, commented:
“If there was an opportunity to make it difficult for Alinghi today then you would take it, but there’s a lot of racing and you still very much have to do your own thing, and that’s what we were doing. We have a lot to do, and we’ll almost have to put the pressure on to Alinghi tomorrow and let them make the mistakes.”
Every podium place is still open at Act 8 Sydney presented by Land Rover – but with 20 points up for the taking for the Act win, the implications on the Series leaderboard are huge. Ben Ainslie and J.P. Morgan BAR will be hoping they can mount a late charge and clinch a podium place – in their way are Realteam, in pursuit of their first ever Act win to secure their position. For skipper Jerome Clerc, the team’s performance so far this year has exceeded his expectations:
“It would be great for the team to finish on the podium. This was not our main target at the beginning of the year; we just wanted to get a podium on one of the venues. But if we are on the podium on Sunday, it would be a great victory. We have come a long way but I think now we are now sailing at our best.”
Softening but no less testing conditions caused a shuffle on the leaderboard, with five different teams claiming maximum points (10) in the eight races sailed. J.P Morgan BAR started the day on the back foot, when Realteam slammed into their back beam during the tight windward mark rounding, knocking out their rudders and the team out of the following three races. A points redress for the team limited the damage ahead of tomorrow’s final day and the Brits are five points ahead of a seemingly revitalized SAP Extreme Sailing Team. The Danes found some of their best form of the season with an impressive four second place finishes elevating the team to fourth from seventh place at the beginning of the day. Co-skipper Jes Gram Hansen is looking to finish the season on a high.
“Our speed is good, the crew handling is good, it’s a tricky place to sail but overall the day was pretty good for us. We hope we can finish the season with a good regatta here in Sydney. It’s been a difficult year for us, that’s no secret. So it will mean a lot for our progression for next year if we sail well here.”
It was also an impressive day by GAC Pindar, whose skipper Nathan Wilmot also celebrated his 35th birthday today. Two race wins from the boys from Down Under was impressive, but not as impressive as his former Australian Olympic team mate Tom Slingsby on Oman Air, who was rarely out of the top three. The Omani team finish the day in seventh place, four points ahead of Phil Robertson and Gazprom Team Russia, who lead GAC Pindar by another four points, with Groupama sailing team languishing in tenth.
As the fleet head into the end game, tonight’s team debriefs will be some of the most important of the season, with points, the Act and the championship at stake. With the Act and the final race worth double points, it is going down to the wire. Will Realteam win their first ever Act and secure their place on the 2014 podium? Can the four-times Olympic champion Ben Ainslie and the Brits pull off their best day of the season? Can Alinghi take victory in the 2014 Series, or will Leigh McMillan and The Wave, Muscat ruin their plans? Watch the final races of the Series live at 1530 local time (GMT+11), www.extremesailingseries.com to find out!
Extreme Sailing Series™ Act 8 Sydney presented by Land Rover standings after Day 3, 18 races (13.12.14)
Position / Team / Points
1st Alinghi (SUI) Morgan Larson, Stuart Pollard, Pierre-Yves Jorand, Nils Frei, Yves Detrey 127 points.
2nd Realteam by Realstone (SUI) Jérôme Clerc, Arnaud Psarofaghis, Bruno Barbarin, Bryan Mettraux, Thierry Wasem 125 points.
3rd The Wave, Muscat (OMA) Leigh McMillan, Sarah Ayton, Pete Greenhalgh, Ed Smyth, Nasser Al Mashari 120 points.
4th J.P. Morgan BAR (GBR) Ben Ainslie, Nick Hutton, Paul Campbell-James, Bleddyn Mon, Matt Cornwell 108 points.
5th SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) Jes Gram-Hansen, Rasmus Køstner, Thierry Douillard, Christian Kamp, Brad Farrand 103 points.
6th Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) Roman Hagara, Hans Peter Steinacher, Mark Bulkeley, Shaun Mason, Stewart Dodson 100 points.
7th Oman Air (OMA) Tom Slingsby, Ted Hackney, Kyle Langford, Joey Newton, Ali Al Balashi 87 points.
8th Gazprom Team Russia (RUS) Igor Lisovenko, Phil Robertson, Garth Ellingham, Pete Cumming, Aleksey Kulakov 83 points.
9th GAC Pindar (AUS) Nathan Wilmot, Seve Jarvin, Matt Mitchell, Tyson Lamond, James Wierzbowski 79 points.
10th Groupama sailing team (FRA) Franck Cammas, Tanguy Cariou, Romain Motteau, Thierry Fouchier, Hervé Cunningham 73 points.
VOR – If you missed the ‘LIVE’ coverage last night here on XS Sailing, here is the replay. Team Brunel has won Leg 2 by passing Dongfeng and finishing ahead by less than 2 miles! Abu Dhabi finished just 17 miles behind. After Leg 1 and 2, all three boats are tied in first place. Watch the replay above and follow the rest of the fleet by clicking HERE!
ISAF WORLDS – There was some fast paced action in the 49er and 49erFX Medal Races at ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne as Nathan Outteridge & Iain Jensen (AUS) and Maia & Ragna Agerup (NOR) claimed the honours and Abu Dhabi final spots. CHECK IT OUT ABOVE!
VOR – The finish is imminent! Dongfeng Race Team gives us a peek into the very tight (and very light) battle to Abu Dhabi. See video above!
VOR UPDATE – Dongfeng has overtaken Team Brunel. But it’s still anyone’s race – Team Brunel is only 1 mile behind and Abu Dhabi is just 4 miles behind the leader. It’s anyone’s race as they race to the finish line! Follow the battle by clicking HERE!
STAR SAILING – The Star Sailors League Finals concluded in triumphant style at the Nassau Yacht Club in the Bahamas last Saturday after a thrilling series of quarter finals, semi finals and finals. The US’s Mark Mendleblatt and his crew Brian Faith won the regatta winning $40,000 after a nail-biting final in which Sweden’s Freddy Loof and Anders Ekstrom claimed second place and Poland’s Mateuz Kusznierewicz and Dominik Zycki took the third step on the podium. Highlights of the final day above!
1) Mark Mendlebaltt and Brain Faith (USA)
2) Freddy Loof and Anders Ekstrom (SWE)
3) Mateusz Kusznierewicz and Dominik Zycki (POL)
4) Jorge Zarif and Henry Boening (BRA)
5) Robert Scheidt and Bruno Prada (BRA)
6) Xavier Rohart and Pierre-Alexis Ponsot (BRA)
7) Giles Scott (GBR) and Stephen Milne (IRL)
8) Johannes Polgar and Markus Koy (GER)
9) Diego Negri and Sergio Lambertenghi (ITA)
10) Robert Stanjek (GER) and Claus Olesen (DEN)
11) Ivan Kliakovic Gaspic and Ante Sitic (CRO)
12) Eivind Melleby (NOR) and Mark Strube (USA)
13) Torben Grael and Guillerme De Almeida (BRA)
14) Josh Junior (NZL) and Myles Pritchard (BAH)
15) George Szabo (USA) and Edoardo Natucci (ITA)
16) Emilios Papathanasiou and Antonis Tsotras (GER)
17) Luke Lawrence and Joshua Revkin (USA)
18) Augie Diaz and Arnis Baltins (USA)
19) Luke Patience (GBR) and Jamie Buchan (USA)
20) Marcelo Fuchs and Ronald Seifert (BRA)
ISAF WORLDS – Catch up on the action from the Finn, 470s and Kiteboarding from ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne.
SYDNEY HOBART RACE – Supermodel Kristy Hinze and husband Jim Clark talk to Mark Beretta about their inclusion in this year’s Sydney to Hobart with their new boat Comanche. Check it out above.
HAPPY HOUR FRIDAY – This one is a classic and popular worldwide…..THE DARK AND STORMY! This is one potent drink, and it’s also super spicy from the strong flavor of the ginger beer. The Dark and Stormy is the perfect thirst quencher while riding out a storm, or, in honor of its nautical history, is particularly enjoyable while on a boat! But if you like strong drinks, you’ll love it anywhere, anytime! DRINK RESPONSIBLY!
LANDSAILERS – Ok… it’s not really a conventional landsailer – but what do you call it? It is powered by the wind and does move over the land. It just uses creepy wooden legs instead of wheels to move over the sand. It’s called a Strandbeest. Check it out!
FOILERS – While the GC32 Racing Tour for 2015 has been unveiled with a program of five events taking place across Europe next summer, focus before then shifts to Florida where four of the one design foiling catamarans will be training in Miami before heading south for Quantum Key West Race Week.
Using the event as a demonstration for the class in the USA, four GC32s are entered in Quantum Key West Race Week. Taking place over 18-23rd January, this is the northern hemisphere’s first major regatta of the year, sailed in the azure blue waters off the so-called ‘Conch Republic’, perched on the southernmost tip of the Florida Keys.
The four will include two of the longest-standing GC32 teams: Team Spax Solutions of GC32 Founder Laurent Lenne, and Armin Strom Sailing Team, skippered by Swiss former Olympic Star sailor Flavio Marazzi. However it will be the first competitive outing in the GC32 for French skipper Erik Maris and Zoulou and for New Yorker Jason Carroll’s ARGO team.
Fresh from his second consecutive victory at the Melges 32 World Championship in Miami last week, Carroll says that he became interested in the GC32 after sailing a foiling Moth, while he is already familiar with catamarans having raced his Gunboat 62 Elvis at events in the Caribbean (Elvis otherwise is used as the ARGO team’s mothership at regattas).
Carroll, who used to sail for Harvard while at college, adds that he got absorbed by foiling catamaran racing during last year’s America’s Cup.“It was the most watchable America’s Cup we’ve ever seen. The fact that the boats are foiling makes the sport something people can get excited about, which is great, because sailing typically has never been a sport that attracts viewers.”
Before acquiring his latest ARGO, Carroll and some of his crew, travelled to La Baule, France to test sail the GC32. “I was impressed with how stable the boat was in non-ideal circumstances,” he recalls. “We were sailing in very choppy conditions in a relatively constrained area for safe sailing, but the boat handled very well. In the Moth when there is over 6in of swell, it dramatically changes how you sail and how you approach the waves, but the GC handles that very well.”
Chad Corning also remembers that first sail. “We didn’t know what to expect,” he admits. “Conditions were pretty big, so we sailed conservatively in low-riding mode to get some runway. When we got to a point where we could have a nice long downwind run, we were all advised to hang on tight prior to tuning downwind – good advice. It was mind-blowing: We bore away, got right up on the foils, riding very high and doing mid-30s. A window opened on a totally new style of sailing – fast, exhilarating and a little bit scary!.”
Since acquiring their own GC32 the ARGO team has been training aboard her in Newport and Miami. “Sailing it has been a thrill – it can scare you, but it can certainly put a big smile on your face,” says Carroll.
During training in Newport in October, ARGO made an attempt on the Mount Gay Rum Around Jamestown Record. Setting new time of 58 minutes and 31 seconds for the 21 mile course, they took 4 minutes and 7 seconds off the previous time. On the attempt the breeze was between 20 and 30 knots and they touched a top speed of 37.1 knots.
In addition to Carroll and Corning, sailing on board the ARGO GC32 will be Moth sailor Anthony Kotoun, Mike Kuscher – both regulars on the World Championship-winning ARGO Melges 32 – plus Dutch catamaran specialist Mischa Heemskerk, who campaigned the Magic Marine GC32 at Marseille One Design in September.
As to the advent of GC32 competition as his regatta, Peter Craig, President of Quantum Key West Race Week’s organisers, Premier Racing, commented: “We are really pleased to have the GC32 class at the 2015 edition of Quantum Key West Race Week. While multihull racing is not new to Key West, foiling cats are and they will certainly add an element of excitement. We’ll do our homework with VPPs as we do every year to keep the classes on Division 1 apart at the corners.”