Snakes and ladders

Another breezy day at the Volvo Melges 24 World Championship

Thursday June 5th 2008, Author: Fiona Brown, Location: United Kingdom
What a difference a day makes, as the 114 competitors from 16 nations found out on the fifth day of the Volvo Melges 24 World Championship, hosted by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda in Porto Cervo.

With the fleet now split into Gold and Silver groups, the Race Committee was able to run races seven through nine on both courses. The skies were somewhat overcast, but there was a great sailing wind from the north west that varied in strength from the low teens up to high 20s for brief periods. The weather challenges combined with the strength of this fleet made for a real 'snakes and ladders' day as the overall results reveal.

Only two boats came out of the day with three top ten scores - Nicola Celon, sailing Marchingenio for Giorgio Marchi who scored 3, 8, 6, and Luca Bursic, sailing Etabeta for Paolo Testolin, who scored 5, 4, 5. As a result they have moved into fifth and seventh place respectively.

In the overall standings Lorenzo Bressani, helming Lorenzo Santini’s Uka Uka Racing, has taken the lead. His day opened with a mediocre 14th, but he made up for this by following it with two wins and now counts 24 points.

Speaking after racing Bressani said "The day didn't start in a great way. In the first race, the second upwind leg wasn't perfect, and an infringement on the second windward mark made us lose about 10 places. We made up for it well in the next two races. The last was really exciting! It was very tiring, especially in the last race of the day where the wind got up to 28/30 knots. It went well though! We need to concentrate hard; it's still wide open, at least for the top 5 boats. I would say we can't complain, even if we've lost a few points here and there."

Alberto Bolzan, sailing Gianni Catalogna’s Pilot Italia, remains in second place having scored 10, 14, 4 in today’s races and counts 32 overall. He commented: "Today we were not very lucky, however we are second in the provisional rating and the games of the World Championship are still all open. Tomorrow, the last day of the regattas, it is as begin again the Championship from the first day, we and another four crews will sail very good during this last three races.”

Flavio Favini, at the helm of Franco Rossini’s Blu Moon, has moved up from fourth into third after an 18th in race seven followed by a third and second, putting him 2 points behind Bolzan. Favini was complimentary about his competitors after sailing: "We still have three races to do. I hope. And it could be heavy air so we still want to sail well tomorrow. We would love to swap places with Uka Uka. They are sailing very well and when you sail that well, you deserve to win. They deserve to be in the top spot. We'll see if we can do better tomorrow, because we still have some racing to do."

Overnight leader Luca Valerio, helming Alina Helly Hansen for Maurizio Abba, has slipped down into fourth overall having started the day well enough with a sixth in race seven, but he then came 20th in race eight before recovering with a third in race nine.

The Gold fleet in particular is so closely matched that there was high drama at many of the marks and constant changes of place on each leg. Perhaps the most spectacular mark incident of the day occurred at a second weather mark when a last minute wind shift threw the approaching boats into chaos. The leading pair - Lorenzo Bressani and Flavio Favini - got around cleanly but behind them boats arriving from the left had nowhere to go and there were collisions galore. Within seconds it was more like watching ballet than yacht racing as several boats took 360o penalties to exonerate themselves. Tonight the jury has 15 protests to hear and will be burning the midnight oil.
Nicola Celon, helming Georgio Marchi’s Marchingenio, was one of those caught up in the incident but his day got even worse when, having extricated himself and set off down the run in fifth place, his spinnaker blew out on hoisting. His well practised team’s high speed sail change saved the day and he only lost four places. With a day’s score of 3, 8, 6 he now lies fifth overall with 41 points and if three races are sailed tomorrow remains in contention.

In the Corinthian Division for all amateur crews Cedric de Kervenoael’s Bouygues Telecom, helmed by Jean-Francois Cruette, has taken the lead by three points from Norwegian Oyvin Peder Jahre, Terra Eindomsmeglng for Stian Briseid. Bruce Ayres and his Monsoon team had another great day coming third in race seven, and winning races eight and nine.

In the overall Corinthian standings he now lies third. After racing an excited Ayres said: "We wanted more! There are a lot of really good teams here. The top 10-20 teams are really, really good."

For Jahre this morning’s race seven was almost but not quite a spectacular double. He not only won the Corinthian Division but he also led the race overall right from the start. Breathing down his neck the whole way round were Gabrio Zandona, helming Joe Fly for Giovanni Maspero, and Nicola Celon, but he managed to hold them off all the way into the closing seconds of the race when the Joe Fly crew timed their final gybe perfectly and slid up neck and neck alongside. On the line it was too close to call from the press boat and only the Race Committee could confirmed Zandona had beaten Jahre. After racing Jahre confirmed: "We had a very good start and a lot of good speed. We managed to get ahead at the first mark. Downwind we were very fast, but at the end it was very close with Joe Fly."

On the Silver Course there were three different winners in the shape of Paolo Brescia in ITA585; Enrico Sinibaldi, helming Masamantes for Renato Vallivero; and Alain Settler, helming Meister Ropes Switzerland for Amrein Hansmartin. The overall standings on the Silver Course are first Emmanuel Nebout on Mu, second ITA585 helmed by Paolo Brescia and third Matthias Keller helming Acqua for Gianluca Tribo.

The Race Committee, headed by Principle Race Officers Peter Reggio on the Gold Course and Hank Stuart on the Silver Course, has confirmed that racing has again been brought forward to 10.30 tomorrow to give the best possible opportunity of running all three remaining races before the 15.30 final start time cut off. The forecast is for more good wind and with five teams going head to head for the Overall Volvo Melges 24 World Championship and three serious contenders for the Corinthian Championship it’s going to be a thrilling finish to the series.

More photos on the following pages....

Results - Gold Fleet
 
Pos Boat Helmsman/Owner Sail No. R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 R9 Tot
1 UKA UKA RACING Lorenzo Bressani/Lorenzo Santini ITA 715 10 6 1 2 2 1 14 1 1 24
2 PILOT ITALIA Alberto Bolzan/Gianni Catalogna ITA 727 2 1 3 1 7 4 10 14 4 32
3 BLU MOON ( 4)(BK)(N) Flavio Favini/Franco Rossini SUI 521 11 5 6 3 1 3 18 3 2 34
4 ALINA HELLY HANSEN ( 85)(O )(N) Luca Valerio/Maurizio Abba ITA 722 1 30 1 2 3 1 6 20 3 37
5 MARCHINGENIO (102)(W )(N) Nicola Celon/Giorgio Marchi ITA 638 7 50 7 1 3 6 3 8 6 41
6 ETABETA ( 86)(O )(N) Luca Bursic/Paolo Testolin ITA 730 29 4 18 4 9 9 5 4 5 58
7 BRONTOLO AB MEDICA (118)(BK)(N) Matteo Ivaldi/Filippo Pacinotti ITA 667 6 13 9 5 6 5 15 7 7 58
8 JOEFLY (113)(W )(N) Gabrio Zandona/Giovanni Maspero ITA 633 22 27 8 8 1 2 1 6 11 59
9 FULL THROTTLE ( 30)(BL)(N) Brian Porter/Brian Porter USA 649 5 3 2 13 8 6 12 18 14 63
10 POIZON ROUGE ( 34)(BL)(N) Jean/Jean-Marc Monnard SUI 599 3 5 10 9 5 8 19 16 12 68
11 COTES D'ARMOR ( 96)(W )(N) Ronan Dreano/Troel Simon FRA 470 2 9 4 20 7 13 23 2 15 72
12 GULLISARA ( 2)(BK)(N) Carlo Fracassoli/Comerio Giuseppe ITA 673 3 20 12 7 5 13 7 13 22 80
13 ALFA SPIDER ( 58)(BL)(N) Gabriele Benussi/Vanni Edoardo Pavesio ITA 742 25 10 4 7 6 9 9 31 10 80
14 EURO-VOILE ( 59)(O )(N) Christophe Barrue/Denis Infante FRA 639 16 10 10 5 8 16 31 12 8 85
15 WOLFPACK RACING TEAM ( 57)(BL)(N) Geir Dhal Andersen/Team Lek NOR 733 6 32 3 17 14 4 4 15 23 86
16 ALTEA ( 87)(O )(N) Andrea Racchelli/Andrea Racchelli ITA 735 36 7 2 3 4 15 22 25 9 87
17 SAETTA ( 55)(BL)(N) Nicolo Bianchi/Nose Sailing Team Ass. Sport ITA 716 27 1 11 6 4 2 34 21 17 89
18 SEVENSTAR SLAM ( 90)(W )(N) Simon Strauss/Simon Strauss GBR 592 29 14 19 4 2 5 17 22 13 96
19 A-TEAM WESTAWAY ( 88)(W )(N) John Pollard/John Pollard GBR 690 5 28 5 10 15 10 8 17 45 98
20 TERRA EINDOMSMEGLNG ( 93)(W )(Y) Oyvind Peder Jahre/Stian Briseid NOR 554 15 4 6 12 18 20 2 34 25 102
21 TEAM BARBARIANS ( 1)(BK)(N) Jamie Lea/Stuart Simpson GBR 691 1 8 29 6 11 10 38 19 21 105
22 BOUYGUES TELECOM ( 35)(BL)(Y) Cruette/De Kervenoael FRA 612 7 16 5 21 11 7 58 11 31 109
23 ONLINE -SIM FIREBOLT ( 97)(W )(N) Roberto Martinez/Carla Ubertalli ITA 574 9 2 12 14 38 7 24 5 58 111
24 MONSOON ( 63)(O )(Y) Bruce Ayres/Bruce Ayres USA 637 20 24 23 12 10 3 20 9 16 113
25 MELLNOSE (104)(W )(N) Pablo Soldano/Pablo Soldano ITA 609 27 13 14 25 9 8 16 27 19 131
26 LENNY ( 31)(BL)(Y) Tonu Toniste/Tonu Toniste EST 646 24 8 7 14 12 26 27 32 58 150
27 GAZOO ( 61)(O )(N) Doug Clark/Geoffery Pierini USA 551 17 9 29 35 23 24 28 10 18 158
28 PROFIL (117)(W )(N) Bruno Jourdren/Bruno Jourdren FRA 756 31 20 17 9 19 11 26 39 27 160
29 MAIDOLLIS ( 40)(BL)(Y) Giovanni Pizzatti/Gian Luca Perego ITA 664 8 12 13 11 16 21 47 58 34 162
30 RETT RUNDT HJORNET ( 25)(BK)(N) Herman Horn-Johannesse/Team Rett Rundt Hjornet NOR 732 4 2 16 58 27 20 29 36 35 169
31 ROCAD RACING ( 18)(BK)(Y) Mikael Lindqvist/Ingemar Sundstedt SWE 532 13 12 17 15 32 39 32 24 26 171
32 RIVERSTONE ( 11)(BK)(Y) Tommaso Del Rio/Alessandro Bagnoli SLO 689 8 45 40 13 12 12 11 46 36 177
33 SECRET MEN'S BUSINESS (111)(W )(Y) Houdek Rudolf/Houdek Rudolf GER 731 14 11 20 24 24 12 35 41 38 178
34 RAT PACK ( 38)(BL)(N) Oliver Schwall/Oliver Schwall GER 627 34 30 8 8 17 11 13 58 58 179
35 DUMBO ( 24)(BK)(Y) Giovanni Debiasi/Giovanni Debiasi ITA 682 30 49 19 21 22 19 21 25.9 25.9 183.8
36 PROXIMO ( 28)(BK)(N) Arpad Litkey/Xsailing HUN 728 17 3 21 23 14 35 45 45 28 186
37 CODE ZERO ( 3)(BK)(N) Geoff Carveth/Miles Quinton GBR 654 26 14 28 17 25 22 37 33 30 195
38 GIVE ME FIVE ( 94)(W )(N) Adrien Follin/GM5 Racing Team FRA 451 18 7 22 26 27 32 49 23 46 201
39 BLOW ( 92)(W )(N) Peder Nergaard/Peder Nergaard NOR 600 52 37 9 39 13 14 25 44 24 205
40 PERROS-GUIREC ( 22)(BK)(Y) Albaret/srPerros FRA 261 25 11 18 22 16 32 46 38 43 205
41 ZIG ZAG 18 ( 32)(BL)(N) Henri Samuel/Henri Samuel FRA 644 12 17 37 23 10 30 21.5 58 58 208.5
42 TRESVALLES.COM.AR ( 48)(BL)(N) Benoit Cheron . FRABC1/Benoit Charon FRA 381 14 23 22 32 32 16 41 42 29 209
43 FRANZ ROCKS ( 43)(BL)(Y) Christoph Skolaut/Christoph Skolaut AUT 406 4 60 46 18 21 14 33 43 41 220
44 SWEATY BETTY ( 60)(O )(Y) Stephen Alex Shafer/Stephen Shafer USA 677 9 39 13 26 20 59 48 29 37 221
45 TORPYONE (106)(W )(N) Edoardo Lupi/"I Lupi di Mare" ITA 681 20 34 16 11 39 18 44 48 39 221
46 MARGARITA (114)(W )(N) Jakub Kozelsky/Petr Matuska CZE 704 12 22 25 40 22 26 39 37 50 223
47 O\'TOMATE ( 98)(W )(Y) Lebourdais/Paul Coirre FRA 375 23 19 15 41 25 41 36 28 48 228
48 AQUA RACING ( 7)(BK)(Y) John Christian Eriksson/John Christian Eriksson SWE 431 28 33 27 19 36 15 42 49 32 232
49 CONTE OF FLORENCE ( 12)(BK)(Y) Andrea Magni/Arturo Mazzanti ITA 567 16 19 24 58 18 36 30 40 49 232
50 MASAMANTES 628 ( 10)(BK)(N) Lorenzo del Felice/Renato Vallivero ITA 628 24 37 32 27 17 29 40 26 58 232
51 FISHDOG ( 49)(BL)(Y) Mario Ziliani/Augusto Viansson Ponte ITA 571 41 6 15 10 60 33 58 52 20 235
52 MACS ( 99)(W )(N) Dietrich Scheder/Dietrich Scheder Bieschin GER 537 34 15 21 16 60 17 58 35 42 238
53 HYDE SAIL ( 19)(BK)(N) Nigel Grogan/Nigel Grogan GBR 546 50 26 20 32 13 28 50 30 44 243
54 HOOCHY COOCHY ( 73)(O )(Y) Carlo Vroon/Carlo Vroon NED 117 31 15 30 24 21 40 43 50 47 251
55 STORM ( 66)(O )(N) Morten Astrup/Morten Astrup NOR 697 46 43 31 15 26 22 52 47 33 263
56 KA-NALU-NUI ( 70)(O )(Y) Gunter Tzeschlock/Gunter Tzeschlock GER 640 11 36 38 27 28 28 51 51 51 270
57 RODOP ( 54)(BL)(N) Lucas Neumann/Martin Kulik CZE 692 15 38 23 58 31 23 53 58 40 281

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