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Bressani v Porter

As Uka Uka Racing takes the lead at the Melges 24 World Championship

Tuesday May 17th 2011, Author: Justin Chisholm, Location: United States

Day two of the 2011 Melges 24 Worlds in Corpus Christi, Texas delivered two races sailed in near perfect conditions, under crystal clear skies and in a solid breeze which built from 15 up to around 19 knots throughout the day.

Lorenzo Bressani's near perfect performance today on Uka Uka Racing means that he tops the leaderboard tonight with an 11 point lead over Kristen Lane on Brick House 812, whose 10, 3, scoreline sees her in second overall, tied on points with Flavio Favini on the Swiss entry Blu Moon in third, and Andrea Racchelli on Altea.

Revelling in the windier conditions on Day 2, American Brian Porter on Full Throttle and Bressani spent both of today's races engaged in their own private battle at the front of the fleet. Bressani led the first race of the day from start to finish, with Porter chasing hard throughout in second. In the second race of the day, it was Porter who led at the windward mark ahead of Bressani who arrived at the buoy on port tack, just a couple of boat lengths behind. With no gap to tack into, Bressani was forced to duck behind two boats before then rounding in fourth.

By the leeward gate, a charging Bressani was up to second and clearly focused on closing Porter down even further. As the leading pair blasted down the final run, Bressani had reduced Porter's lead to just a few lengths, and the Italian appeared to be gaining with every gust.

In the last few feet to the finish, Porter, coming in at pace from the right, just managed to pull off a gybe in front Bressani, who was hurtling in from the left. With Bressani arriving at full speed on the layline to the finish, Porter was just able to complete his gybe in time enough to surf home, only a few feet ahead.

Despite finishing tenth in the first of today's races, Kristen Lane on Brick House 812, proved that her race win on the opening day was no flash in the pan, when in the second race of the day she clawed her way back from a poor windward mark rounding to ultimately take third. Rounding the final windward mark in seventh place, Lane showed blistering pace down the last leg to move within striking distance of the pack of boats all scrapping for third.

Nailing the port layline into the finish with absolute precision, Lane came in very hot from the left to snatch third place, after just managing to thread herself between the pin end line boat and the fast approaching bowsprits of Andrea Racchelli on Altea, Blu Moon and Moth World Champion Bora Gulari on New England Ropes/West Marine. Lane's gutsy manoeure earned her second place overall at the end of Day 2.

It is a testimony to the extremely close nature of the racing at this championship that second placed Lane is in a three way tie on points with both Favini and Racchelli, who are in third and fourth places respectively. Indeed just six points separate second from seventh overall. A fifth and an 11th today for yesterday's regatta leader Nathan Wilmot on Embarr sees the Irish team drop to fifth place overall, with a four point advantage over Alec Cutler on Hedgehog in sixth. After a poor opening day by his own standards, Brian Porter has moved up to 7th by way of his 2,1 performance today.

Now holding an 11 point advantage at the top of the standings, the reigning world champions on Uka Uka Racing, were looking understandably calm and relaxed after racing today.

"Yes it was a good day for us." commented tactician Jonathan McKee. "We are obviously very happy with the way things went today. We managed to get off the line quickly and we felt we had good boatspeed in those conditions."

Asked if he had been following a particular strategy today, he had this to say "It was all surprisingly subtle out there. The wind was pretty steady and there wasn't a consistent side of the racecourse which seemed to pay. It was more about finding the best pressure downwind and avoiding the bad sets of waves upwind."

Trimmer Federico Michetti, paid this tongue in cheek tribute to his helmsman. "Rufo (Lorenzo Bressani) likes the breezy conditions, so this makes it very easy for the rest of us. He is like a racehorse, we just take the blinkers off his eyes at the start, and off he goes!"

In the all amateur Corinthian Division, Japana's Eiichiro Hamazaki continued to dominate with another pair of bullets to give him an 11 point overall lead over American August Hernandez on High Voltage in second and Germany's Christof Wieland on Unsponsored in third.

With the normal weather system in Corpus Christi now appearing to have re-established itself, local opinion suggests that tomorrow may bring windier conditions still. Racing on Day 3 is scheduled to start at 11 AM local time with two more races scheduled. Racing at the 2011 Melges 24 World Championship in Corpus Christi Texas continues until Saturday 21 May.

Results:

Pos Bow/Sail   Boat   Skipper R1 R2 R3 R4 Tot
1   21 / ITA 817   UkaUka Racing   Lorenzo Bressani   6   2   1   2   11  
2   02 / USA 812   Brick House 812   Kristen Lane   8   1   10   3   22T  
3   20 / SUI 596   Blu Moon   Flavio Favini   3   6   8   5   22T  
4   15 / ITA 735   ALTEA   Andrea Racchelli   4   7   7   4   22T  
5   04 / IRL 607   Embarr   Conor Clarke   2   5   5   11   23  
6   17 / BER655   hedgehog   Alec Cutler   9   8   3   7   27  
7   29 / USA-749   FULL THROTTLE   Brian Porter   16   9   2   1   28  
8   01 / USA 811   WTF   Alan Field   1   11   11   8   31  
9   16 / ITA 819   AUDI   Riccardo Simoneschi   7   12   4   9   32  
10   32 / JPN 783   Esprit   Eiichiro Hamazaki 11   4   9   15   39  
11   25 / USA 820   New England Ropes/West Marine   Bora Gulari   15   10   12   6   43  
12   06 / USA 623   Brick House 623   Peter Lane   18   18   6   10   52  
13   27 / NOR 804   Full Medal Jacket   Eivind Melleby   5   3   33/DSQ   12   53T  
14   08 / AUS 553   Bandit   Warwick Rooklyn   14   13   13   13   53T  
15   22 / FRA 644   ZIG ZAG 18   Henri Samuel   12   16   15   17   60  
16   24 / USA 786   BATTLE RHYTHM   Guy Mossman   22   15   17   14   68  
17   26 / USA 604   Tom Slick   Jeff Wittenberg   10   23   16   22   71  
18   07 / AUS 686   Coco   Heath Walters   13   17   19   26   75T  
19   10 / USA 533   High Voltage   August Hernandez 28   14   14   19   75T  
20   31 / USA 379   Team Velocitek   Daniel Kaseler   20   21   20   18   79  
21   05 / USA 700   ARDOR/C.R.E.A.M.   David O'Reilly   19   20   23   20   82  
22   28 / GER 635   Unsponsored   Christof Wieland 33/RAF   19   18   16   86  
23   13 / USA 615   Funtech Racing   Charlie Hess 24   27   21   21   93  
24   03 / USA 674   Rosebud   Scott Holmgren 23   26   22   23   94  
25   14 / USA 24   Smokin   Kevin Clark 21   24   28   24   97  
26   09 / USA 344   Cold Shot   Steve Eller 17   28   25   29   99T  
27   12 / USA675   12happythoughts   David Brede   25   25   24   25   99T  
28   11 / CAN 121   Black Dog   Dave Black 27   22   27   28   104  
29   33 / USA 480   Monsoon II   Mark Hulings 26   30   26   31   113  
30   18 / USA 494   Wee Jaggie   Andrew Walford 30   31   29   27   117  
31   23 / USA 15   Abordage   Erwan le Gall 29   29   30   30   118  
32  30 / USA 201   Mako   Stephen McMillan   31   32   31   32   126  
 

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