BMW Oracle Racing teams excel in Austria
In fact both the lead boats, which are tied on points at the end of racing today are manned by BMW Oracle Racing personnel with with Ian Vickers and John Kostecki on RC 44 Challenge and of course Larry Ellison and Russell Coutts on BMW Oracle Racing.
The wind was northeasterly and 5-12 knots this afternoon. Generally the wind was such that it favoured the RC 44s heading for the coast and stay as close as possible to the shore in order to benefit from land effects there. However, occasionally the right was favoured allowing some spectacular come-backs.
It was definitely a tough day for the tacticians and the results show it clearly: except for RC 44 Challenge - which finished all the races in the top five – all the teams scored at least one bad result.
James Spithill was relegated to grinding on RC 44 Challenge today: “I find it awesome to sail on this lake, it is beautiful but also very interesting. The strategy is very different, we need to play with the land effects and John Kostecki did a good job at putting us in the right place.”
Some top teams such as Torbjorn Tornqvist’s Artemis or Chris Bake’s Team Aqua didn’t manage to score a top three today.
Pieter Heerema, owner of No Way Back said: “You are never safe on this lake and the sailing is really difficult, but I enjoy it immensely. This lake is less predictable than the sea and there is a portion of luck, good or bad. You just need to accept it and to be patient. The organisers of this event are doing a tremendous job. Nobody knows anything about sailing here but there is a huge crowd; people are passionate and very friendly. The atmosphere is great.”
Chris Bake, owner of Team Aqua added: “I was asleep during the first race; we got stuck in a tree in the second, took a premature start in the third and started sailing decently in the last race. This summarises our day pretty well.”
Igor Lah and his team onboard Ceeref started the day with a disastrous tenth place but finished with two consecutive wins. "“We did a good job after an embarrassing first regatta," said Lah. "The racing here is very interesting; we really need to sail close to the shore in order to catch the lifts, it’s very exciting.”
Katusha’s owner Guennadi Timtchenko also had an interesting time- today he discovered the sport of sailing, the RC 44 Class and yacht racing! Benefititng from Paul Cayard’s advice, Timichenko spent most of the day fighting in the middle of the pack, racing hard and discovering why this sport - and this particular Class – are such a passion for its members.
“This is all new for me and I will remember this first regatta all my life!" said Timtchenko, who is Torbjorn Tornqvist's co-founder and partner in Geneva-based oil trading company, Guvnor. "It is an absolute pleasure to sail on this lake with Paul and the other guys; the place is absolutely beautiful and the sport is very interesting. My only regret is to discover it so late!”
The RC 44 Class for the first time is using live GPS tracking so racing can be viewed on its website.
Fleet race, provisional results after four races:
Ranking, name of team, helmsman, results, points (no discard)
1) BMW ORACLE Racing, Larry Ellison, 1, 2, 8, 2 – 13 points
2) RC 44 Challenge, Ian Vickers3, 5, 2, 3 – 13 points
3) Team No Way Back, Pieter Heerema, 2, 1, 3, 8 – 14 points
4) CEEREF, Igor Lah, 10, 3, 1, 1 – 15 points
5) Artemis, Torbjorn Tornqvist, 4, 9, 4, 5 – 22 points
6) Team Sea Dubai, Harm Muller Spreer, 6, 4, 10, 6 – 26 points
7) Team Islas Canarias Puerto Calero, Daniel Calero, 5, 7, 5, 10 – 27 points
8) Team Aqua, Chris Bake, 7, 10, 7, 4 – 28 points
9) Katusha, Guennadi Timtchenko, 8, 6, 9, 7 – 30 points
10) Team Austria, René Mangold, 9, 8, 6, 9 – 32 points