MOD70 TOUR NEWS – Just a few days ago Musandam-Oman Sail edged on to the podium after finishing 3rd in offshore leg 2 from Dublin, Ireland to Cascais, Portugal, so this – their first win – is a welcome step up for the relatively inexperienced team.
“It’s just so good. You know I would like to party with the team but we cannot because tomorrow we go again. That’s the rhythm and the pace of this European Tour. But it’s great. We won three races of the six. It’s a great win. We are very glad,” said Gavignet.
“It is hard to pinpoint one improvement. I mean we are improving from the beginning. We started far behind but we improve. From the beginning we had some trouble. We lost one of our crew to injury, another was sick and we lost our daggerboard in Dublin. But we kept going with a positive spirit. We are just trying to make some progress little by little and that’s it you know. Nothing special. We are just trying to work well in a good atmosphere to get the best out of everyone.
“The Omani sailors still need to progress a lot, just like all of us. I am hard with them and hard on myself and it’s a balance between pushing them too much and keeping them very positive. I need to show them what the problems are so they can learn so it is a constant discussion, sometimes pushing, sometimes being softer, but always trying to help them improve.
“It is a great adventure. It is not easy every day but it is a great adventure to sail on the Omani boat, to sail with Omani crew and with an international team,” said Gavignet.
Oman’s Moshin Al Busaidi was delighted with the result today as he watched his crew mates Fahad and Khamisget thrown into the water in celebration.
“We had been leading the group here in Cascais and we were torn about racing today and the possibility of losing our position! But I think the team and the skipper have worked very hard to stay in first place.
“Coming third in Leg 2 gave us a boost and made us feel more positive and optimistic. We did a good job and I hope tomorrow, in the 3rd leg, that we will do better again,” said Al Busaidi.
Musandam-Oman Sail was top of the leaderboard in Cascais from Friday through Saturday but a fifth place in Sunday’s first race of the day saw them slipping by just one point to Spindrift racing. However the win in the sixth and final race put them back up to the top spot with a two point lead over Spindrift racing.
It was a nail-biting finale to the Cascais City races as three boats, FONCIA, Race for Water and Groupe Edmond de Rothschild, were called over the start line early. Musandam-Oman Sail managed to emerge from the melee with the lead and stay ahead around the two lap course. But not without pressure from Race for Water who after making a good recovery at the top end of the first windward leg were breathing down the neck ofMusandam-Oman Sail until the finish.
Thick fog and very light five knot winds delayed the start of racing on Sunday. The first race was shortened as the sea mist started to roll in again. Racing was postponed for a further thirty minutes for conditions to improve and for the tide to turn before Sunday’s second race, the sixth and final race of the series finally got away in building 8-10 knot breeze.
Monday sees the start of the MOD70 European Tour Leg 3 which will take the fleet around Portugal on a course from Cascais to Porto back to Cascais to Sines and back to Cascais for the finish on Tuesday afternoon. Weather depending the Sines leg may be dropped.
Cascais City Race results after six races
1 Musandam Oman Sail 64 pts (10, 10, 12, 12, 8, 12)
2 Spindrift racing 62 pts (11, 11, 9, 10, 12, 9)
3 Groupe Edmond de Rothschild 59 pts (12, 9, 10, 9, 9, 10)
4 Race for Water 58pts (9,12, 8, 8, 10,11)
5 FONCIA 57pts (8, 8, 11,11, 11, 8)