Brazilians not named Grael lead Bacardi Cup

Published on March 3rd, 2015

Miami, FL (March 3, 2015) – A beautiful tropical day was on tap for the Star sailors competing in the 88th Bacardi Cup, with the 57 teams facing 14 knots out of the ESE on Biscayne Bay. The course for day two was set a bit farther away, 3 miles South of Dinner Key Channel, and the windward leg was stretched to 2.4 miles.

The Race Committee continued needing the black flag in today’s race, which led to a successful start with only one boat called over, bow 37, Hubert Merkelbach and Gerrit Bartel (Ueberlingen, GER).

The first boats to make it to the weather mark were Torkel Borgstrom and Juan Pablo Engelhard (ARG), followed by Peter Vessella and Phil Trinter (USA), and Alexander Jorissen and Erik Veldhuizen (NED), respectively. Once the fleet reached the downwind gates it seemed that Vessella/ Trinter had fallen out of the top three, while Jorge Joao Zarif and Bruno Prada (BRA) moved up to third, eventually taking second and ultimately first place, passing Torkel Borgstrom and Juan Pablo Engelhard who lead the entire day.

“We lost in the downwind leg,” says Borgstrom. “Jorge and Bruno definitely had a better downwind by being more aggressive and sailing ‘Laser’ style. When we found out, it was too late. In any case we round all marks in first and we had a great day.”

Jorge Joao Zarif, now the overall leader with a second yesterday and a first today, commented: “At the first weather mark we were 4th, we then passed 3 boats and we positioned ourselves in a good place for the win and we did it despite a problem we had with a block on the boom. We had a very good strategy today and our choice to go to the left was right on target. We now are first in the cumulative results and we will fight for every position without risking too much.”

Second after two days of racing is the duo of Mark Reynolds and Magnus Liljedahl (USA). “Finishing fifth and fourth respectively is a good result for the series which still has four days of racing,” noted Liljedahl. “Today we were lucky as some sailed way too far and we were able to hang in there with a solid performance. Most of all I really enjoyed today’s sailing conditions which were spectacular and great for the Star boats.”

Third overall are Lars Grael and crew Samuel Goncalves (BRA). “We are happy to have finished 10th today,” says 2014 Bacardi Cup Champion Grael, “but we were penalized by the wrong strategy we chose at the start. We went right and it ended up we were on the wrong side. We round the first mark in the 20th position and worked our way up to 10th. The Series is still long and being third is a good spot.”

Racing will resume tomorrow with a noon start. Plenty of wind and sun is forecast for the third day in a row.

Report by event media. Photos by Cory Silken.

Complete resultsEvent directoryBACARDI Miami Sailing WeekBACARDI Cup

Background: The 88th Bacardi Cup for the Star Class is March 2-7, while racing for the 6th BACARDI Miami Sailing Week is March 5-7 for the J/70, Viper 640, VX One and M32 classes. On the water activities are coordinated by Coral Reef Yacht Club in collaboration with the Biscayne Bay Yacht Club and with the help of the U.S. Sailing Center and Shake-A-Leg Miami.

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