Skunked at Extreme Sailing Series
Published on April 29th, 2017
Qingdao, China (April 29, 2017) – The Extreme Sailing Series™ fleet will go into the second half of Act 2 in Qingdao split by just 12 points after super-light winds prevented racing on day two.
The lack of action today means the last two days of Act 2 Qingdao “Mazarin” Cup will be even more vital as the seven international crews look to put as many points as possible between them and their rivals before the regatta climax on Monday.
The scoreboard remains unchanged from yesterday – Alinghi top that table with 34 points while SAP Extreme Sailing Team and Red Bull Sailing Team occupy the second and third spots with 30 points apiece.
NZ Extreme Sailing Team lie in fourth on 26 points, with Oman Air two points adrift in fifth. Team Extreme, co-skippered by Qingdao sailing star Black (Liu Xue), are in sixth on 23 points with Land Rover BAR Academy one point behind in seventh.
As the fleet hit the water today with just a couple of knots of wind blowing through Fushan Bay, the hope was for a repeat of yesterday’s Act 2 curtain raiser when a 15-knot breeze materialised midway through the afternoon.
But after three hours of patient waiting, which included a handful of non-scoring exhibition races, Race Director John Craig made the decision to send the fleet back to the dock.
With no points awarded today it means the Act 2 leaderboard is even tighter going into the third and penultimate day of racing tomorrow.
Despite the absent breeze, Land Rover BAR Academy mainsail trimmer Will Alloway said the day gave the crew a chance to practice their light-wind sailing techniques.
“Although we only managed a couple of exhibition races we were really happy with how we sailed,” he said. “Our communication was good and we all worked together.
“We had a frustrating day yesterday so it was good to put into place all the processes we talked about last night. We’re only seven points behind second place despite being last on the leaderboard so that puts it all in perspective.
“I’m sure we will get some racing in over the next couple of days so we’re not too upset at our results from yesterday. After all, this is the Extreme Sailing Series and anything can happen.”
Pete Greenhalgh, mainsail trimmer and tactician on Oman Air, added: “The wind just didn’t play ball today but we have these days every now and again. The nature of sailing is that you’re at the mercy of the weather but for every day where there’s no wind you get a day of champagne sailing.
“We’ve just got to be patient and the wind will come. The forecast is for better wind tomorrow so hopefully Qingdao will turn it on for us.”
Racing resumes tomorrow at 14:00 local time (UTC+8). There will be live video streaming available on April 30 and May 1 as well as graphics provided by SAP analytics on April 25 to May 1. Watch here.
Standings after Day 2, 3 races
1st Alinghi (SUI) Arnaud Psarofaghis, Nicolas Charbonnier, Timothé Lapauw, Bryan Mettraux, Yves Detrey 34 points.
2nd SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) Jes Gram-Hansen, Rasmus Køstner, Mads Emil Stephensen, Pierluigi de Felice, Richard Mason 30 points.
3rd Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) Roman Hagara, Hans Peter Steinacher, Stewart Dodson, Adam Piggott, Will Tiller 30 points.
4th NZ Extreme Sailing Team (NZL) Chris Steele, Graeme Sutherland, Shane Diviney, Leonard Takahashi Fry, Josh Salthouse 26 points.
5th Oman Air (OMA) Phil Robertson, Pete Greenhalgh, James Wierzbowski, Ed Smyth, Nasser Al Mashari 24 points.
6th Team Extreme (CHN) Liu Xue (Black), Bernardo Freitas, Martin Evans, Rob Partridge, Tom Buggy 23 points.
7th Land Rover BAR Academy (GBR) Rob Bunce, Chris Taylor, Will Alloway, Adam Kay, Sam Batten 22 points.
2017 Extreme Sailing Series™ calendar
March 8-11 – Muscat, Oman
April 28-May 1 – Qingdao, China
June 29-July 2 – Madeira Islands, Portugal
July 20-23 – Europe
August 10-13 – Hamburg, Germany
August 25-28 – Cardiff, UK
October 19-22 – San Diego, USA
Nov 30-Dec 3 – Los Cabos, Mexico
Background: The Extreme Sailing Series is in its eleventh season, with this year’s eight event tour travelling through Asia, Europe, and Australia. The platform used is the one design foiling GC32 catamaran, with the format highlighting ‘stadium’ short-course racing in front of the public.