Oman Air win Extreme Sailing Series Hamburg
Published on August 13th, 2017
Hamburg, Germany (August 13, 2017) – Oman Air took its second Act victory in a row in a thrilling Hamburg finale, despite last minute pressure from SAP Extreme Sailing Team. The triumph sees the Omani syndicate move into pole position in the overall rankings.
Red Bull Sailing Team rounds off the podium while early season leader Alinghi posted its worst result since 2012, following an action-packed, crowd-pleasing day on the River Elbe for Extreme Sailing Series™ Act 5, Hamburg, presented by Land Rover.
“We’re over the moon,” said a grinning Phil Robertson, skipper and helm of the Omani-flagged squad, who adds to his growing tally of recent sailing successes, which include wins in the World Match Racing Tour and M32 World Championship, as well as in the previous Extreme Sailing Series Act in Barcelona.
“The fight was on today and the boys fought hard. SAP Extreme Sailing Team was sailing well and getting win after win so we knew our lead was getting smaller, but we didn’t panic, which was key,” commented Robertson, whose team has sat top of the Act podium since race one.
“I’m going to put my feet up for a week, that’s for sure,” added Robertson, whose winning crew included Pete Greenhalgh, Ed Smyth, James Wierzbowski and Nasser al Mashari.
The battle for glory between SAP Extreme Sailing Team and Oman Air went down to the wire, however, even a win in the final double-points race wasn’t enough for the Danes, who needed to put at least two boats between them and their rival to finish ahead.
“It was super close out there. We started off strong but Oman Air sailed really cleanly and we just couldn’t catch them,” said Adam Minoprio, helm of SAP Extreme Sailing Team, whose team finishes just three points shy of the Act champion having started the day with an eight-point deficit.
“It was good to take the final race for bragging rights as you’re only as good as your last race. We look forward to Cardiff and to getting one back on Phil, and we’re really enjoying the close competition,” added the Kiwi sailor, whose team drops from first to second on the 2017 podium, tied on points with the leader.
Red Bull Sailing Team finishes third and was awarded the Zhik Speed Machine Trophy, with insights from SAP, for the second Act running, for reaching the top speed of the regatta at 23.9 knots. The team remains fourth overall.
At some point during the Act, each of the top six finishers have had a turn on the podium, with the constantly shifting scoreboard demonstrating just how tricky the racing has been for the international fleet of world-class sailors.
The biggest upset of the Act sees Alinghi finish sixth and drop to third on the season scoreboard, a devastating blow for the 2016 champion, who led the 2017 rankings for the first three Acts.
“We feel really disappointed because we didn’t sail well at all, but the other teams deserve it. It wasn’t our regatta and we need to work harder for the next one to come back in to the game,” said co-skipper Arnaud Psarofaghis.
“The crew did a good job the whole regatta but we were just off pace, made some bad decisions tactically, and that put us in a bad situation.”
NZ Extreme Sailing Team follows the Swiss in fourth, having suffered a damaging blow to its scorecard in race 14.
“We were launched off the first race but we got pretty beaten up and ended up last, so it was tricky to bounce back from that. Just as we got some momentum going, we ran into the ground in the pre-start and weren’t able to race so that was hard to build from,” explained co-skipper Chris Steele.
“Fourth is the best result for the team so far this year, the learning curve this week has been awesome. I really feel like we’ve taken two steps forward, so hopefully we can take them to Cardiff,” added Steele, whose team leapfrogs Land Rover BAR Academy on the overall scoreboard to take fifth.
Despite a strong start to the day for Land Rover BAR Academy, who posted a first and a second in the opening races, the young British syndicate finishes the Act in fifth, two points ahead of Alinghi and tied on points with the Kiwis.
Local wildcard entry Team Extreme, whose crew line-up featured German 49er sailor Linov Scheel, finishes at the bottom of the table.
The international fleet of GC32s will reconvene in Cardiff in less than two weeks for the sixth Act of the eight-Act season, headlining the Cardiff Harbour Festival.
To relive the broadcast footage from Hamburg, click here.
Final Standings (16 races)
1st Oman Air (OMA) Phil Robertson, Pete Greenhalgh, James Wierzbowski, Ed Smyth, Nasser Al Mashari 177 points.
2nd SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) Rasmus Køstner, Adam Minoprio, Mads Emil Stephensen, Pierluigi de Felice, Richard Mason 174 points.
3rd Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) Roman Hagara, Hans Peter Steinacher, Stewart Dodson, Adam Piggott, Will Tiller 158 points.
4th NZ Extreme Sailing Team (NZL) Chris Steele, Josh Junior, Harry Hull, Shane Diviney, Josh Salthouse 149 points.
5th Land Rover BAR Academy (GBR) Rob Bunce, Chris Taylor, Oli Greber, Sam Batten, Matt Brushwood 149 points.
6th Alinghi (SUI) Arnaud Psarofaghis, Nicolas Charbonnier, Timothé Lapauw, Nils Frei, Yves Detrey 147 points.
7th Team Extreme (GBR) Stevie Morrison, Luís Brito, Frederico Melo, Tom Buggy, Linov Scheel 117 points.
Crew line-up for 2017 Extreme Sailing Series™ Act 5, Hamburg presented by Land Rover
Co-skipper/helm: Arnaud Psarofaghis (SUI)
Tactician/mainsail trimmer: Nicolas Charbonnier (FRA)
Headsail trimmer: Nils Frei (SUI)
Bowman: Yves Detrey (SUI)
Floater/foil trimmer: Timothé Lapauw (FRA)
Land Rover BAR Academy (GBR)
Skipper/bowman: Rob Bunce (GBR)
Helm: Chris Taylor (GBR)
Mainsail trimmer: Sam Batten (GBR)
Headsail trimmer: Oli Greber (GBR)
Floater: Adam Kay (GBR)
Reserve: Matt Brushwood (GBR)
NZ Extreme Sailing Team (NZL)
Co-skipper/helm: Chris Steele (NZL)
Mainsail trimmer: Josh Junior (NZL)
Headsail trimmer: Harry Hull (NZL)
Foil trimmer: Josh Salthouse (NZL)
Bowman: Shane Diviney (IRL)
Oman Air (OMA)
Skipper/helm: Phil Robertson (NZL)
Mainsail trimmer: Pete Greenhalgh (GBR)
Headsail trimmer: Ed Smyth (NZL/AUS)
Bowman: James Wierzbowski (AUS)
Bowman: Nasser Al Mashari (OMA)
Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT)
Skipper/helm: Roman Hagara (AUT)
Tactician: Hans Peter Steinacher (AUT)
Mainsail trimmer: Stewart Dodson (NZL)
Headsail trimmer: Adam Piggott (GBR)
Bowman: Will Tiller (NZL)
SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN)
Co-skipper/coach: Jes Gram-Hansen (DEN)
Co-skipper/tactician/mainsail trimmer: Rasmus Køstner (DEN)
Helm: Adam Minoprio (NZL)
Headsail trimmer: Pierluigi de Felice (ITA)
Bowman: Richard Mason (GBR)
Trim assist/grinder: Mads Emil Stephensen (DEN)
Team Extreme (GBR)
Skipper/helm: Stevie Morrison (GBR)
Mainsail trimmer: Frederico Melo (POR)
Headsail trimmer: Tom Buggy (GBR/IRL)
Foil trimmer/bowman: Luís Brito (POR)
Bowman/floater: Linov Scheel (GER)
Extreme Sailing Series™ 2017 overall standings (After 4 of 8 Acts
Position / Team / Points
1st SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) 43 points.
2nd Alinghi (SUI) 43 points.
3rd Oman Air (OMA) 42 points.
4th Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) 37 points.
5th Land Rover BAR Academy (GBR) 32 points.
6th NZ Extreme Sailing Team (NZL) 31 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 – Barcelona, Spain
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 Middle East, Asia, Europe and the Americas. The platform used is the one design foiling GC32 catamaran, with the format highlighting ‘stadium’ short-course racing in front of the public.