The third day of racing at the SNIM took place under the still shining sun of the Provence capital. One surprise - the Mistral left!
Instead the Melges sailors had to cope with a West to South West 230 degree wind, which rose from very light (about 5 knots) in the first race to about 6-7 knots in the second and a good 12 knots in the 3rd race. The conditions made it a very tactical day, full of surprises.
In the first race Blue Moon and Joe Fly had a very tight match, which Blue Moon seemed to control but Joe Fly finally wins. Some surprises in this race, where the wind arrived from the left side, whereas some top players like Gill were on the right. As the president of the French class mentions, the first race was hard for the nerves!
The second race is won by Roberto MARMNEZ on Fire Bolt, in front of Joe Fly and Transtec. Fire Bolt is creating a surprise since it is his first season in Melges. But some factors have to be taken into account : the helmsman, Roberto, is the 2003 world champion in Mumm 30 and a former main sail trimmer aboard Il Moro di Venezia. Flavio Grassi - the tactician - is a tailer aboard Mascalzone Latino. It seems that a new excellent crew is coming into the game…
Big Ship, with Maxime Paul, had an excellent start, with good speed, in the third race and then made the right decisions, conserving his edge during the whole race. Just behind him Partners & Partners and Blu Moon were fighting hard : Flavio took the advantage on Sebastien Col. Chasing them was the very young and sympathetic crew of Minnie the Mooncher - unfortunately not enough present on the Melges circuit. In spite of two minor results by light wind, they are definitely performing well in this 2004 SNIM.
A little focus on the Norwegians from Lek who drove a long way down to Marseilles : they are discovering the SNIM, which is also their first regatta of the season. Though they declare to have missed opportunities, at least their trend for today is good : 26 - 25 and 5! They appreciate the excellent conditions they are discovering in the bay, especially with the wind, and also find the committee very efficient. No doubt they will be back next year!