Hurakan still ahead
There were two inshore races...and rain...today here on the Le Marche coast, which means there are enough races completed for a valid official championship with one day left of racing tomorrow at the Adria Ferries ORCi World Championship. The cool and rainy conditions were driven by a low pressure system affecting the weather throughout northern Italy today.
The uncharacteristically cool conditions did not reduce the heat on the race course, as over 50 boats in each class battled for position in the 12 knot northwesterly breeze in the racing area just north of the venue at Marina Dorica. Starts and mark roundings were extremely crowded and hard-fought, particularly among entries in Class B.
The first race of 9.4 miles for Class A and 8.0 miles for Class B came off well after an early start to the day. But a dark cloud approaching the course area from the north brought with it a significant right shift in the second race, where the runs became reaches and beats became fetches on both courses. So race managers shortened the course at the top mark for Class B, and the scorers on both courses adjusted their Performance Curve scoring models to reflect the shift.
But those that were caught out on the wrong side of the shift could not recover, so there was some turnover in results in both classes for this second race.
With help from former America's Cup tactician Tommaso Chieffi, Marco Serafini's TP52 team on Hurakan (ex-Powerplay) has overtaken their rivals to now lead Class A by 5 points on the strength of today's 1-2 scores. This is an impressive performance in what has proven to be a very competitive class.
As part of the event's measurement controls, Hurakan was re-measured last night and some minor discrepancies were found that resulted in a change in rating of 0.22% (about 1 sec/mile), not enough to trigger any penalty under ORC rules. But all races were re-scored with Hurakan's new certificate, and her scores remain the same except for one change of place in Race 2.
Another Class A entry who had a phenomenal day on 2-1 scores was Vodni Doprava Evropska's mixed Czech/Brazilian team on the GS 42 Bohemia Express. This team lies fifth in the standings, but on the inshore races alone would be runner-up to Hurakan and the only non-50-footer in the top five places.
Ironically, the other class leader, Giuseppe Giuffre's M37 Low Noise, is ahead by only 6 points, but was also caught by measurers last night to be out of compliance with a rule in the Offshore Special Regulations. The International Jury is still reviewing the case at press time, so it is uncertain yet if there will be any change of scores to affect the current standings and her slim lead over the reigning Class B World Champion, Vincenzo de Blasio's NM38 Scugnizza.
The top Corinthian entry in Class B had great positioning in the last race relative to the new wind shift, and so Alessandro Consiglio's First 35 South Kensington has another bullet to match the one they earned in the short offshore race. This has them sitting in third place in Class B overall, an impressive position for what the team has described as "just a stock production boat."
So, it's all to play for in tomorrow's final day of inshore racing to determine the new Class A and Class B World Champions. If conditions permit two or more races to be held, a discard will be allowed, and any race but the long offshore race may be discarded from each team's scores. This may re-shuffle the deck for the final podium positions in each class, as well as for the all-amateur teams vying for the Corinthian Trophies also awarded in each class.
Like today, inshore racing will resume 1.5 hours earlier tomorrow, with the first warning signal scheduled at 10:25 local time.