Quantum back on form
The 2009 Circuit winning team are back on the Atlantic waters where last season they clinched the overall title and on the evidence of today’s practise race, which they won handily, nearly one minute ahead of Circuit leaders Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL), they should not be written off.
Racing in an unsettled and challenging light breeze of 7-10 knots, Quantum Racing (USA) started smartly off the committee boat end of the start line which allowed them to break early to the right side of the track and gain the benefit as the wind clocked slightly to the right. The black and green hulled Botin Carkeek design lead away at the first windward turn, nine seconds up on Italy’s Audi Q8. A good first run from Emirates Team New Zealand elevated them to second which they held to the finish.
Aboard Spain’s Bribon, Britain’s double Olympic gold medallist Shirley Robertson, guested for today on the helm, combining with fellow double medallists Thierry Pepponnet (FRA) and Ross McDonald (CAN), to take fourth place.
Robertson, who is no stranger to TP52s after steering Eamon Conneely’s Copa del Rey winning Patches in the formative seasons of that programme, is visiting the Audi MedCup Circuit in her role as presenter of CNN’s Mainsail programme, coolly completed interviews and commentary as she steered Bribon around the course.
Emirates Team New Zealand’s second place today once more underlined their potency in the light to moderate conditions after working the left side of the course upwind on the first leg, they proved quick enough in the modest breezes. Tactician Ray Davies (NZL) repeated today that their strategy this week will be simply to ‘survive this regatta in good shape’ and to ‘keep our high averages up.’ The Kiwi team lead overall Audi MedCup Circuit TP52 Series by 32.5 points.
Portugal Trophy, TP52 Series, Practise Race.
1 Quantum Racing (USA)
2 Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL)
3 Matador (ARG)
4 Bribon (ESP)
5 Synergy (RUS)