Luna Rossa holds lead at 52 Super Series
Published on June 21st, 2018
Zadar, Croatia (June 21, 2018) – Tina Plattner won her first 52 SUPER SERIES race today steering Phoenix and Takashi Okura and crew on Sled triumphed for the second consecutive coastal race of this 2018 52 SUPER SERIES season but it is Luna Rossa which still lead the Zadar Royal Cup in Croatia.
The Italian team which wear the Prada colours posted a solid fifth and third from a long, hot and challenging day of light winds to lie three points clear of an ominously consistent Platoon team.
The pair of second places from Harm Müller-Spreer’s German flagged crew, the current world champions, were especially impressive for their steady, patient tactics in the light going, coupled to very good boat speed. Platoon’s one sticky moment was when they struggled to lay the first windward mark of the coastal race during a very busy, tight rounding.
But under tactician John Kostecki and strategist Jordi Calafat Platoon made steady gains on the long second beat and on the following run to chase Sled across the finish line, going 2,2.
“I think the key today really was patience and John and Jordi really did a great job in finding the best breeze. We are not always the most patient team but we did well today,” smiled Platoon’s Pepe Ribes.
For Race 3, once again in the NW’ly light breeze there was no one side of course, set off Zadar town, which paid off. The early left was good but the right came in strong from half way up the first beat.
With Ed Baird calling tactics, Phoenix were clear ahead at the first windward mark and, as the pack tussled behind were able to sail through the finish line with a decent lead over Platoon which only just got the better of Quantum Racing.
Of their first win in their first season on the 52 SUPER SERIES Tina Plattner said:
“I am a little bit lost for words that we have done so well so quickly here. I have to thank the team for getting where we have got to. Everyone on the team is really upbeat and excited. For me it is going a lot better than I expected but it is very shifty and that makes it easier if you are not right up there immediately. But we are taking it a day at a time.”
In Race 4, Sled repeated their coastal race success that they enjoyed last month in Šibenik when they triumphed on a long, slow and mentally exhausting marathon of a ‘short’ 20 miles coastal race. The breeze faded from eight to just five or six knots down the long run to the finish.
Mr Okura’s Sled led early on the first, opening windward leeward circuit and were able to extend away and were never challenged thereafter. During the approach to the first windward mark, Quantum Racing struck Platoon and lost their bowsprit but still managed to rescue seventh place on the water.
Tactician Terry Hutchinson reflected on a bitter sweet kind of day for the Quantum Racing which lies seventh overall after four races:
“It was disappointing to hit Platoon and break our prodder off but at that point if you said we were going to then pass four boats in the race I would have thought you are crazy. But we sailed a really good race from there. And we came off the water averaging a five. Doug kept us all nice and relaxed, at certain times things don’t click and then it is about how you react as a team.”
Platoon took second behind Sled and with Luna Rossa third, the Italian team still lead the regatta by three points over Harm Müller Spreer’s world champions with Phoenix dropping to third.
Standings after four races:
1. Luna Rossa (ITA) (Patrizio Bertelli) (1,2,5,3) 11 p.
2. Platoon (GER) (Harm Müller-Spreer) (5,5,2,2) 14 p.
3. Phoenix (RSA) (Hasso/Tina Plattner) (3,7,1,6) 17 p.
4. Sled (USA) (Takashi Okura) (6,4,7,1) 18 p.
5. Provezza (TUR) (Ergin Imre) (11,3,4,5) 23 p.
6. Alegre (USA/GBR) (Andrés Soriano) (2,9,9,4) 24 p.
7. Quantum Racing (USA) (Doug DeVos) (9,6,3,7) (2 penalti) 27 p.
8. Gladiator (GBR) (Tony Langley) (7,1,11,11) 30 p.
9. Azzurra (ARG/ITA) (Alberto Roemmers) (4,10,10,9) 33 p.
10. Paprec Recyclage (FRA) (Jean Luc Petithuguenin) (8,8,8,10) 34 p.
11. Onda (BRA) (Eduardo de Souza Ramos) (10,11,6,8) 35 p.
The 52 SUPER SERIES is established as the world’s leading grand prix monohull yacht racing circuit. The 2018 season will mark the seventh season of the 52 SUPER SERIES which grew from the ashes of the TP52 MedCup which finished in 2011 when the principal sponsor withdrew.
2018 52 SUPER SERIES Calendar:
Sibenik 52 SUPER SERIES Sailing Week – May 23-27 – Sibenik, Croatia
52 SUPER SERIES Zadar Royal Cup – June 20-24 – Zadar, Croatia
Rolex TP52 World Championship Cascais 2018 – July 17-21 – Cascais, Portugal
Puerto Portals 52 SUPER SERIES Sailing Week – August 21-25 – Mallorca, Spain
52 SUPER SERIES Valencia Sailing Week – September 18-22 – Valencia, Spain
Source: 52 SUPER SERIES