All to Play for tomorrow at ORC World Championship
Published on July 3rd, 2015
Barcelona, Spain (July 3, 2015) – Yet another day of hot sun and light 6-8 knot conditions today allowed just enough breeze to hold one inshore race this afternoon at the 2015 ORC World Championship, hosted by Real Club Nautico de Barcelona. This being the seventh race of the regatta and having both offshore races completed last night allows the standings in each class to shuffle and compress as a discard applies for each entry’s worst race dropped from their scores.
The pressure from this after with a long week of competitive racing may have taken its toll on some teams today, while others rose to the occasion to defend their positions on the top of the leaderboard in each class.
In Class A Marco Serafini’s TP 52 Xio from Italy started out the day on a high: in having earned two bullets last night, they passed fellow Italian and the series leader Alberto Rossi on his TP 52 Enfant Terrible Minoan Lines also from Italy on the water and in points, with the slimmest 0.5 point margin. But traffic problems prompted Xio to tack in the shifty light winds on the second beat, taking its toll on this team who sailed to their 8th place discard today while Rossi and team earned a second, and by discarding fewer points put themselves back into the leas, but only by a 2-point margin.
A heartbreaking 4 seconds in corrected time between 6th and 8th places after just over an hour of racing has put Xio in this position, so it will be all to play for tomorrow between these two for the 2015 Class A World title.
There is also dramatic tension building behind these two front-runners for the remaining podium position tomorrow, as the results took a big re-shuffle in points. Rafael Carbonell’s Swan 45 Rats on Fire from Spain earned their second win in the series today, with a 19-point Race 2 discard placing them in third place on 31 points. But Jean Jacques Chaubard’s French team on his GP 42 Team Vision Future earned a respectable 5th place today, and in discarding a 17th in yesterday’s Race 5 they lie in fourth place only 4 points from the Spanish, tied with Eduardo Wong’s new Soto 48 Kuan Kun from Peru, who finished 6th and discarded a 10th place in the first race of the event.
Also within striking range for Bronze tomorrow is Kevin Whitcraft’s TP 52 THA72 from Thailand and Roberto Monti’s TP 52 Airis from Italy, who won Bronze in the 2012 World Championship held that year in Helsinki.
After a long night and and having coffee with this crew today with his crew, Spanish offshore sailing legend Pedro Campos was worried about the lead they had just earned in Class B on his Swan 42 Movistar.
“They have a shorter keel and smaller main, so they rate better but are just as fast,” he said, referring to their Spanish sistership Swan 42 Pez de Abril, owned by Jose Maria Meseguer. “We don’t owe them much time, but we have to work hard to stay ahead of them, they are good.”
They are so good, in fact, that they won today’s Race 7, and in discarding an 11th in Race 3 they have closed to within 5 points of Campos for the lead in the class. In third is Pier Vettor Grimani’s X-41 Sideracordis from Italy six points back, with another Italian X-41, Gianclaudio Bassetti’s WB Five, yet another six points back within range of the podium tomorrow.
But the real drama on the water and in the standings is the fight in Class C, where another day of recalls and black flags rewarded those who could endure the tactical fights and survive. It may be therefore no surprise that a smaller, nimbler fast boat raced by the reigning Class C World Champion team led by Duccio Colombi from Italy on Giuseppe Giuffre’s Italia 9.98F Low Noise II was able to punch through the mess to finish second today to Michael Mollman’s Danish X-37 Hansen, and in discarding a 14.5 in Race 3 rise to the top of the standings on 17 points.
“Today we started well, keeping to the left,” said Colombi. “We were able to keep us off from the rest of the fleet to enjoy clean air. We arrived seconds behind Hansen the X-37, and this allowed us to win first place in the standings with five points. Tomorrow we must race with an open mind and do what we do well – five points are not much in this fleet because it is large and it is fierce.”
Jose Luis Maldonado’s X-35 Fyord from Spain discarded a DSQ in Race 1 to rocket up through the ranks to third place on 28 points, with the next contender, the Spanish X-37 Solventis and a prior series leader in this class, lying not far behind in fourth on 36.5 points.
The weather forecast for tomorrow looks similar to the last few days, with lots of sun but not lots of wind, so one and maybe two races will be scheduled for a 1200 start. Regardless, three World Champions will be crowned tomorrow in each of three classes, along with winners in the Corinthian divisions of each.
Racing concludes Saturday July 4, 2015.
Report by Dobbs Davis.