Emerging with a sixth from a scrappy, difficult final race which was contested in conflicting breezes Emirates Team New Zealand clinched the Marseille Trophy by 14 points, the biggest regatta winning margin on the Audi MedCup Circuit since Mean Machine won in Portimao in 2007.
Winning four races and never finishing worse than sixth in the ten races here, the Kiwi team skippered by Dean BARKER
(NZL) with past MedCup winner Ray DAVIES
(NZL) as tactician move 16 points clear at the head of the Audi MedCup TP52 Series standings ahead of defending Circuit champions Quantum Racing (USA).
"It feels better here than losing in Alicante."
Emirates Team New Zealand CEO Grant DALTON (NZL) deadpanned, "And regattas always feel better a couple of days later, and winning is always just a relief that you did not lose. It is really is nothing more than that."
In the Audi MedCup GP42 Series a third in the final race ensured that the team on Roma Mk2 skippered by Paolo CIAN
(ITA) leave France with the Marseille Trophy and head for their native Italy with a lead of four points over Alicante Trophy winners Islas Canarias Peurto Calero on the Audi MedCup Circuit GP42 Series standings
Four winning guns for Emirates Team New Zealand were supported by a consistent string of scores, reflecting as much their fortitude as a team, able to come back better from their occasional visits to the lower depths of the fleet. Typical of that, they pulled back to sixth today from eighth in a final race which was afflicted by two very different, breezes tussling for supremacy on either side of the course.
But in their de-brief the Kiwi circuit leaders will consider that their current leading margin belies how close the racing has been here, and in Alicante and reflects Quantum Racing's two premature starts, and third placed Matador's headfoil failure in the coastal race. They have no room for complacency.
Portugal's Bigamist staged a remarkable come-from-behind victory with two incredible downwind legs to take their second race win this season in race 10, the final race held in Marseille. Pedro MENDONCA's crew lie fifth overall on the TP52 Series and finished fourth overall in the regatta.
The Portuguese team from Cascais had to make a penalty turn at the first windward mark after they tacked on the bow of Cristabella (GBR). They rounded the offset mark a distant last but recognized the stronger breeze on the left, contrasting with the collapse on the right, and rounded the leeward turn in fifth. The same tactic on the second run allowed them to pip Pisco Sour (CHI) to win in the final 200 metres of the race.
Audi MedCup Circuit 2009 - TP52 Series
Overall (after Alicante and Marseille)
1. Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL), 38+27.5= 65.5 points
2. Quantum Racing (USA), 40+41.5= 81.5 points
3. Matador (ARG), 36+47.5= 83.5 points
4. Artemis (SWE), 37+62.5= 99.5 points
5. Bigamist (POR), 46+55.5= 101.5 points
Results - click here