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18 January 2006, 10:49 am
Bruschetta Keeps Up The Good Work
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J/24 World Championship 2006
Melbourne, Australia

A perfect day's sail was how competitors described the big gusty south easterly winds on Port Phillip, Australia, and the Brazilians at the J/24 World Championship took full advantage today, continuing to capitalize on their lead at Sail Melbourne winning a further race.
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The Bruschetta crew, skippered by Mauricio SANTA CRUZ, handled the gusty and lumpy seas to finish seventh in race seven and win race eight to lead the twelve race series from Wataru SAKAMOTO's (JPN) Siesta.

There was no napping for the Siesta crew, who moved into second place following the much fancied Italian Luigi RAVIOLI's Black Jack crew's OCS in race seven. The Italians have dropped down to fourth place overall.

Yesterday's third placed Inmarsat of Ian SOUTHWORTH (GBR) still retains that place, despite being disqualified from race seven overnight following a protest by the Brazilians.

Sean WALLIS (AUS) on Fly Emirates, the 2006 J/24 Australian Champion has slipped a place following 12,16 scores today and Sydney sailor Doug MCGAIN on Code Violation has sneaked up into fifth overall following a handy win yesterday and a 6,8 score today.

Winner of race seven was Ben LAMB's (AUS) crew on Kaotic. 'I got a good start quarter way from the boat end - we hit the line with speed. Our tactician Ben MORRISON did a good job of sending us the right way - which was the left side. After that we just kept it simple - we went for speed, but played it safe,' was LAMB's assessment of their win.

In race eight, Olympic bronze medallist in the Laser Michael BLACKBURN (AUS) on J-Spot put a cat amongst the pigeons to finish second. As the Black Jack crew match raced the Brazilians for first place to the finish, BLACKBURN sailed between the two to snatch second place - his years of Laser racing skill showing today.

Reigning NSW champion Sean KIRKJIAN (AUS) on Death Star had a better day, moving up to tenth overall following 8,7 results. 'My two results today add up to less than one of my results yesterday,' said KIRKJIAN, using humour to describe his woeful 22nd place yesterday.

On the other side of the coin, Nev WITTEY (AUS) on Starpac had his worst day. A 19th in race seven looked good after a 31st in race eight. 'We lost our owner [Terry WISE] over the side and it took a while to haul him back onboard - he didn't let go, so that shortened the period somewhat,' WITTEY said, adding, 'conditions were magic, just perfect out there, despite what happened.'

Sandringham Commodore, Phil COOMBS (AUS) on Hyperactive, saw the incident, 'Didn't those guys know that commercial fishing has been stopped in the Bay? They caught an old-boiler instead of a Snapper - maybe Terry can start some prawn-trawling lessons at his sailing school.'

Out on the course, set off Sandringham Yacht Club, Race Director Kevin WILSON described conditions as 'beautiful, really good' - and the images taken today justify his statement.

Winds reached 17-23 knots and there were plenty of waves to surf out on the windward/leeward course, where many broached and wiped out, including the Brazilians. 'Yes, there was a lot of action out there today,' said WILSON, continuing, 'Quite a few broaches coming up to the second mark and a couple of wipe outs under spinnaker as they went through the gybe, then a couple hit the top mark and a further two hit the finish mark, costing them all quite a few places.'

Protests and breakages too. WALLIS is protesting Stephen GIRDIS' (AUS) Convicts Revenge amongst others and the Polish Canadian crew aboard Single Malt, after being holed near their stern yesterday, broke their rudder today, whilst the Kiwi crew of Kicking Bottom, have done everything but that - their mainsail tearing during race seven, they did not finish race eight and now lay at the bottom of the table.

The twelve race series continues from the host venue, Sandringham Yacht Club tomorrow, when officials plan holding two further races starting from 1200 hours local time.

Sail Melbourne is made possible by the support of event sponsors: Sport & Recreation Victoria, Collex, Parks Victoria; associate sponsors Bayside City Council and Menere's BMW Brighton and support sponsors Ronstan International, Schenker Australia, City of Kingston and the City of Port Philip.

Top Ten

Pos Nation Boat Skipper R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 Pts
1 BRA Bruschetta Mauricio SANTA CRUZ 1 7 5 2 5 (13) 7 1 28
2 JPN Siesta Wataru SAKAMOTO (10) 8 3 6 7 5 2 4 35
3 GBR Inmarsat Ian SOUTHWORTH 4 5 4 9 3 (41) DSQ 4 9 38
4 ITA Black Jack Luigi RAVIOLI 2 2 2 18 12 2 (41) OCS 3 41
5 AUS Code Violation Doug MCGAIN (24) 15 8 5 1 8 6 8 51
6 AUS Fly Emirates Sean WALLIS 15 6 9 1 14 1 12 (16) 58
7 JPN Cerezo Yasutaka FUNAZAWA 14 12 (20) 12 2 3 13 5 61
8 USA Brain Cramp Mike INGHAM 11 3 12 (16) 4 10 10 15 65
9 US The Pie David KLATT 9 4 1 (41) SCP 11 18 18 12 73
10 AUS Death Star Sean KIRKJIAN 16 (23) 15 8 22 6 8 7 82

For all the news on Sail Melbourne CLICK HERE.

Di PEARSON (As Amended by ISAF). Image, Sean WALLIS' Fly Emirates leads around the mark:© Andrea FRANCOLINI
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