Doctor visits 52 SUPER SERIES Cape Town
Published on March 5th, 2020
Cape Town, South Africa (March 5, 2020) – As predicted, the Cape Doctor, the renowned strong, local south-easterly wind came in for the penultimate day of racing at the first event of the 2020 52 SUPER SERIES to produce some thrilling racing.
With Morgan Larson steering, Jonathan McKee on tactics, and Alberto Barovier on strategy, Bronenosec won the only race of the day after making the best of a significant wind shift on the first run and choosing the favored turning mark at the leeward gate.
But while the Russian-flagged team ran out winners ahead of Quantum Racing, a fourth for Hasso Plattner’s local favorites on Phoenix 11 ensures the South African team – steered by the hugely experienced Plattner – closes the gap on regatta leaders Azzurra. The defending champions lead into the last day by seven points.
Azzurra could only make a seventh today, their worst score of the event so far. But with the breeze forecast to return to light to medium conditions for tomorrow’s finale, the Italian-Argentine team of the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda have a fighting chance of landing the first title of the 2020 season.
Azzurra’s new tactician Michele Paoletti was smarting on the dock having not really achieved the result Azzurra team had hoped for.
“We did not have a race that was as nice as the others” noted Paoletti. “We had too many things that were not so good today. We have some confused situations with other boats, we did not manage them properly. We did not have really nice manoeuvres, which is unusual for us. We have a little lead for the last day so we will try not to do anything extreme and sail consistently.”
With the wind on the start line at over 20 knots, this time the shift and the pressure was better on the right of the course upwind. This was recognized early by Andy Soriano’s Alegre, Quantum Racing, and Tina Plattner’s Phoenix 12, which rounded first, second, and third.
The race leaders lost out on the downwind shift in direction while Bronenosec gained at the leeward gate rounding, establishing a lead that was never challenged, recording their second win of the week.
“Obviously this is what people expected from Cape Town that we would have strong breeze at some point,” noted Tina Plattner. “These boats are such great fun when the puff comes on and you are going downwind at 21 or 22 knots, so today was awesome.
“We have sailed in these conditions before of course but not in this fleet and so the pressure is always higher at the top marks and the bottom. When it is close and everyone is pushing then it gets the heart rate up and the adrenalin pumping.”
Peter Holmberg, tactician on Phoenix 11, recognizes how they will need to replicate the form they showed on the opening day if they are to run out home team winners.
“With that much breeze today you’ve got to make sure you keep the boat together, and don’t make any big blunders,” said Holmberg. “The boat’s fast, the crew did a good job, and Hasso did a great job.
“I’ve got a great team around me, I’ve got Andy Horton – we’ve got two tacticians on this boat – so we make a strategy each day – look at the weather and we’ve got some good local input, so we put our heads together and make a plan.”
Racing is from March 2 to 6.
Day Four Results (7 races)
1. Azzurra (ARG/ITA) (Alberto/Pablo Roemmers) (4,2,2,2,5,2,7) 24 p.
2. Phoenix 11 (RSA) (Hasso Plattner) (1,3,1,7,8,7,4) 31 p.
3. Quantum Racing (USA) (Doug DeVos) (5,8,4,5,1,6,2) 31 p.
4. Bronenosec (RUS) (Vladimir Liubomirov) (2,10,7,1,6,8,1) 35 p.
5. Sled (USA) (Takashi Okura) (3,4,RDG6,RDG5.5, RDG5.5, RDG5.5, RDG5.5) 35 p.
6. Platoon (GER) (Harm Müller-Spreer) (9,7,8,3,2,1,6) 36 p.
7. Alegre (USA/GBR) (Andrés Soriano) (7,1,DNF11+2,4,3,3,9) 40 p.
8. Provezza (TUR) (Ergin Imre) (6,6,3,8,9,4,5) 41 p.
9. Phoenix 12 (RSA) (Tina Plattner) (8,5,5,9,7,5,3) 42 p.
10. Paprec (FRA) (Jean-Luc Petithuguenin) (10,9,6,6,4,9,8) 52 p.
The 2020 season marks the ninth edition of the 52 SUPER SERIES which is established as the world’s leading grand prix monohull yacht racing circuit.
March 2-6 – Cape Town 52 SUPER SERIES Sailing Week, Cape Town, South Africa
March 31-April 4 – Rolex TP52 World Championship Cape Town 2020, Cape Town, South Africa
May 12-16 – Royal Cup 52 SUPER SERIES Scarlino 2020, Scarlino, Italy
June 17-21 – Audi 52 SUPER SERIES Porto Cervo & TP52 20th Anniversary Invitational, Porto Cervo, Italy
July 18-22 – 52 SUPER SERIES Valencia Sailing Week, Valencia, Spain
September 15-19 – Puerto Portals 52 SUPER SERIES Sailing Week, Puerto Portals, Spain
Alegre – Andy Soriano (USA/GBR), 2018 Botin
Azzurra – Roemmers Family (ARG/ITA), 2018 Botin
Bronenosec – Vladimir Liubomirov (RUS), 2019 Botin
Gladiator – Tony Langley (GBR), 2017 Botin
Paprec Recyclage – Jean-Luc Petithuguenin (FRA), 2015 Judel/Vrolijk
Phoenix 11 – Hasso/Tina Plattner (RSA), 2018 Botin
Phoenix 12 – Hasso/Tina Plattner (RSA), 2014 Botin
Platoon – Harm Müller-Spreer (GER), 2018 Judel/Vrolijk
Provezza – Ergin Imre (TUR), 2018 Judel/Vrolijk
Quantum Racing – Doug DeVos (USA), 2018 Botin
Sled – Takashi Okura (USA), 2018 Botin
Team Vision Future – Jean Jacques Chaubard (FRA), 2015 Botin
Source: 52 Super Series