New leader at 93rd Bacardi Cup
Published on March 3rd, 2020
Miami, FL (March 3, 2020) – On the second day of the 93rd Bacardi Cup, the 64 teams in the Star Class were greeted by warmer temperatures, a cloudy sky, and a tricky 8-10 knots of breeze from the southeast.
The Race Committee hoisted the ‘U’ flag but that didn’t cool down the fiery fleet as the first start ended up in a general recall. Principal Race Officer Carl Schellbach opted for the penalty threat of the black flag for the second attempt and got race two off to a clean start.
While most of the big names opted for the Committee end of the line, only local super hero Augie Diaz (USA) sniffed out a preference for the left side of the track, but by the windward mark all the best players were in the leading pack anyway.
The light air guru George Szabo (USA) with crew Guy Avellon (USA) rounded the mark first, hunted down by the Danish/German team of Jorgen Shoenherr and Markus Koy, then the reigning Star World Champions Mateusz Kusznierewicz and Bruno Prada (POL/BRA), and finally Diaz and Henry Boening (BRA) in fourth.
By the downwind gate the order of play was the same, with the addition of Star Class newcomer Manu Hens (BEL), who is usually found racing a Snipe, showing his talent at the helm and gearing up to sixth.
However, Kusznierewicz and Prada took control of the fleet ahead of mark three and extended to the finish line to claim race two. Adding a win to their second place from yesterday places them at the top of the leaderboard.
“It feels great,” said five-time Star World Champion and Olympic medalist Bruno Prada. “In today’s conditions our boat is super fast and that makes our job much easier, but also today we executed what we had planned and this always feels very rewarding.”
Five-time Olympian Kusznierewicz, who also counts Olympic and World Championship medals in the Finn Class to his tally of successes, was pleased with the communication onboard.
“From the minute the flags are hoisted we know exactly what to do both upwind and downwind, and the tactics comes easy as we move on the racecourse,” notes Kusznierewicz. “It’s a really good feeling and winning the race only shows it’s all working well.”
The 2017 Star Class World Champions Eiind Melleby (NOR) and Joshua Revkin (USA) added a 3rd to their scorecard and leap to second overall, with overnight leaders Peter and Robert O’Leary (IRL) dropping to third after their 7th place.
Diaz/ Boening finished in 2nd to advance to fourth overall, while 2019 Bacardi Cup winners Eric Doyle and Payson Infelise (USA) count two top 10 finishes to sit in 9th overall.
The 93rd Bacardi Cup and Bacardi Invitational Regatta are from March 2-7. Racing for the Star Class gets underway March 2 with the J/70, Melges 24, Viper 640, VXOne, AV8 and Windfoil classes taking to the track on March 5. The Star fleet will contest their traditional one race per day whilst all other fleets will sail up to eight races across three days.
Day Two Results:
Star Class (Top 10 of 64; 2 races)
1. Mateusz Kusznierewicz / Bruno Prada , POL – 2 -1 ; 3
2. Eivind Melleby / Joshua Revkin , NOR – 4 -3 ; 7
3. Peter O’Leary / Robert O’Leary , IRL – 1 -7 ; 8
4. Augie Diaz / Henry Boening , USA – 7 -2 ; 9
5. Diego Negri / Frithjof Kleen , ITA – 5 -6 ; 11
6. Paul Cayard / Pedro Trouch , USA – 3 -9 ; 12
7. Jørgen Schönherr / Markus Koy , DEN – 8 -4 ; 12
8. Manu Hens / Joost Houweling , BEL – 6 -11 ; 17
9. Eric Doyle / Paison Infelise , USA – 9 -8 ; 17
10. George Szabo / Guy Avelon , USA – 13 -5 ; 18
Source: Twelve USA, INC.