In light conditions contrasting sharply with the first two days raced in the northwesterly Mistral, Jochen Schuemann and Sebastien Col retained their new found winning momentum today when Audi Sailing Team powered by ALL4ONE took their second race victory of the Region of Sardinia Trophy and extended their overall lead at this third regatta of the Audi MedCup Circuit to six points. A third place for Quantum Racing sees them rise to second overall in the regatta.
There was joy for the local Cagliari team of Roberto Pardini on XXII-Sardegna when they won their first race on their home waters in the Soto 40 fleet. The local team set themselves up for victory with a punchy start, herding their opposition high of the layline to the committee boat end of the start line. From there they capitalised on their early jump, sailing astutely in the light breeze to stay ahead of Iberdrola Sailing Team to take the winning gun.
After a four hours delay waiting for the sea breeze to settle enough to race, patience was finally rewarded just before 1700 with a good contest in 6-9 knots of southeasterly breeze.
After dueling with Niklas Zennström’s Rán at the pin end of the start line and being outgunned, Audi ALL4ONE tacked and ducked five sterns to get to the right early in the beat. The regatta leaders were rewarded with a good lead at the windward mark. Bribon also gained on the right early and tracked all the way around the course in second.
Audi ALL4ONE’s tactician Sebastien Col later admitted that their had been some extended discussion between their afterguard as to whether the left or right was preferable and their initial call was for the left, offshore side of the track: “Rán did a really good job off the pin end of the line and when we had to get out of there then I could see pressure on the right side of the course and we went for that. That gave us a nice lead. For sure there is a good feeling on the boat now, a nice ambience. We have some speed now, we are not the quickest but now we are starting to be able to do what we want to do, not what we have to do.”
Skipper Jochen Schuemann added: “I think that today we´ve been quite lucky, when we saw that things were not going well on the left side we said ‘okay, let's try the right one then’ and we were lucky enough to go well and pass the rest of the boats really close. There was a strong breeze building there and it helped us stretch the lead from the fleet and we sailed there right until the end. Nothing's really changed - it's going to be difficult in the future, but we are going to try to hold the lead for as long as we can. We have two more days here, let´s see how that goes for us. We have at least three more races and a lot of things can happen, we know how eager the rest of the boats are to come back, let´s see what happens."
In the 40 Series Iberdrola Sailing Team finished only half a boat length behind the victorious XXII-Sardegna and continue to lead the fleet overall by three points.
Saturday sees the planned coastal race for the TP52s carrying a 1.5x points weighing, but in order to try and catch up the one race which was missed today, there will be one windward-leeward first with a proposed start sequence at midday and 1207hrs for the Soto 40s.
Region of Sardinia Trophy - TP52s - results after five races:
1. Audi Sailing Team Powered by All4One (GER/FR), 4+1+3+3+1=12 points
2. Quantum Racing (USA), 6+6+2+1+3=18 points
3. Synergy Russian Sailing Team (RUS), 3+7+1+5+4=20 points
4. Bribón (ESP), 7+4+5+2+2=20 points
5. Container (GER), 1+2+7+4+7=21 points
6. RÁN (SUE), 2+5+4+6+6=23 points
7. Audi Azzurra Sailing Team (ITA), 5+3+6+7+5=26 points
8. Gladiator (GBR), 9(DNC)+9(DNC)+9(DNC)+9(DNC)+9(DNC)=45 points
Soto 40s - results after three races:
1. Iberdrola Team (ESP), 1+1+2=4 points
2. Noticia IV (ESP), 2+2+3=7 points
3. XXII Sardegna (IT), 4+4+1=9 points
4. Ngoni (GBR), 3+3+4=10 points
5. Patagonia (ARG), 6(DNC)+6(DNC)+6(DNC)=18 points
More from Nico Martinez:
From Ian Roman - on board the Soto 40 Ngoni with Tony Buckingham