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23 August 2005, 11:52 am
IMS 600 Offshore Race, Imagine Ahead Of Moonshine
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Rolex Baltic Week 2005
Neustadt, Germany

Sweden and Germany took the bullets of the day in the Rolex Baltic Week yesterday. The crew of Imagine led by Peter RUDBÄCK (SWE) were the top scorers at the IMS 600 world championships. In dreamlike sailing conditions Harm MÜLLER-SPREER (GER) came first in the Dragon worlds. And the Swan Race saw a surprising change in the leader board.
At the end of the 115.3 nautical miles offshore course of the IMS 600 worlds, it was not just matter of minutes, but seconds when the race committee took the times at the gate. After 41 nautical miles, the IMX-40 Moonshine by Matthias Müller von BLUMENCRON (GER) was 21 seconds ahead of Imagine on calculated time. 'During the night, we did ourselves in with the light and fickle winds off Rostock,' said RUDBÄCK to explain why he had to give in to not only the Swedes and the Norwegians.

'We had a fantastic race,' said RUDBÄCK, 'we hade a good run.'

Just before reaching the intermediate finish, only the Germans had overtaken Imagine. In the end, three IMX-40's were on the podium much to the dislike of the other favourites.

Another favourite from Hamburg had a great start at the Hanseatic Lloyd Dragon World Championship. Harm MÜLLER-SPREER steered Ocasione from the left side of the starting line to the favoured left side of the course. His South German crew with the professional skills of Markus WIESER and the Olympic experience of Thomas AURACHER did a great job. Even their Danish competitors were faster at times, MÜLLER-SPREER proved to have the better tactics. 'On the second beat we managed to shake them off for good,' said the helmsman. Frank BERG (DEN) finished second, ahead of Oleg KAPERSKY (RUS).

'The strongest competitor came fourth,' said MÜLLER-SPREER about Jorgen SCHÖNHERR. Prior to the worlds, the Danish sailor had won the Gold Cup in the Dragon class and planned to double his success in Neustadt. Current world champion Dieter SCHÖN slipped badly. The German who lives in Austria came only 41 out of 73 entrants. And it was even worse for Thomas MÜLLER (GER) who had a premature start and are now at the back of the fleet.

Another favourite slipped at the Swan Race, presented by Deutsche Bank. Following three wins in the days before, Claus BRESSLER (GER) and his Swan 56 Chrila came only seventh in the medium distance race of 33 nautical miles and had to cede the overall lead to Bobby LUCHTE (GER) and his Swan 44 MKII Moriju who is now at the top. Dietrich STAHL's Swan 391 Ivana S. had pushed Harald BAUM's Swan 48 Elan from third to fourth place.

Andreas Kling (As Amended By ISAF), Image: Winner of the day in the Dragon - Mueller-Speer, Wieser, Auracher © Daniel Forster/Rolex
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