All at sea
Wednesday August 2nd 2006, Author: Andi Robertson, Location: none selectedWith a choice of the 93.5 mile course, the 20-strong TP52 taking part in the Copa del Rey have a long evening ahead of them. At 1830h local time the fleet were just a few miles off the first scoring gate of Isla de Toro at the far western point of the Bay of Palma.
Siemens have led this first part of the race more or less from the start line. The Ian Walker-skippered boat had a text book start in the middle of the line which meant that were able to take advantage of the breeze, whichever way it went across the course. Siemens, with tactics being called by Vince Brun, got the shifts spot on on the first beat and as they approached the windward mark they were in the lead and were able to set their own pace in terms of sail selection and were able to keep an eye on the chasing pack and sail a safe downwind leg.
Mutua Madrilena, which currently leads the TP52 class in Copa del Rey, did not have such a good start, but were able to make amends on the downwind leg and gain places. However, a third of the way up the second beat a crew member fell off the boat and they lost valuable places recovering him from the water.
Balearia have had an excellent race so far. A good start beside Siemens set them up with clear air and good, consistent boat speed through the range of wind conditions has kept them amongst the leading boats.
From Isla de Toro the fleet will beat back across the Bay of Palma to the island of Cabrera at the south eastern point of the island before coming back into the finish line at Cabo Blanco.