AUDI ORCI WORLDS UPDATE - Moderate breeze and seas yielded perfect conditions today for the resumption of inshore racing in Day Three of the Audi ORCi Offshore World Championship. Class A caught up on their schedule with three races completed, while Class B finished the day with two final races in their qualifying series to determine the teams advancing to the Gold and Silver fleets for the remainder of the event.
Reigning World Champion Alberto Rossi and his Italian team led by America’s Cup tactician Thomasso Chieffi on their Farr 40 Enfant Terrible continue to lead the pack in Class A, but just four points ahead of the 2011 European Champion Silva Hispaniola, Peter Schmidt‘s Evento 42 from Germany.
But by any measure the best boat of the day in Class A was Roberto Monti‘s Felci-designed GP4 Airisfrom Italy on scores of 1-3-1. This impressive performance was in sharp contrast to their first two days of mid-fleet finshes, but has helped vault them up into fourth place, only two points from the third place holder, Juss Ojala‘s Estonian GS 42R Amserv.
In contrast, the early event leader, Jahni Lehti‘s Finnish GS 42R Audi, got caught in the first race’s black flag start to add a whopping 48 points to an otherwise good scoreline. This team will no doubt bounce back into contention once seven races are completed and this score is dropped from their total.
In Class B1, the leading team simply continued their winning ways, adding two more bullets to their scorecard. Mihkel Kosk‘s Estonian NM38S Sugar 2 sailed flawlessly to lead the pack, and enjoys a 7-point lead over runner-up Lenco, Erik van Vuuren’s Salona 37 from Holland. But Juergen Klinghardt‘s 2010 World Champion team from Germany on his X-332 patent3 are tied on points with Lenco, and will no doubt keep the bigger boats worried by continuing to challenge them in corrected time into the next round.
Patrik Forsgren‘s Swedish modified First 36.7 Team Arken Zoo had another good day on two seconds in Class B2, but the day’s winner in this class was Vincenzo de Blasio‘s NM 38S Scugnizza on their impressive double-bullet performance.
The Gold Fleet cut was made at 19th place in Class B1, so Leif Englund‘s Swedish Dehler 34 SV Dehltamade it through, as did Kristen Pugi‘s Estonian First 34.7 Evelyin III at 19th place in Class B2. There are, however, numerous protests being heard this evening by the International Jury led by Lars Nyqvist, so these mid-fleet results may be re-shuffled.
Inshore racing continues tomorrow in Day Four of the championship, with light northerly winds in the forecast.