'We had a very good crew and a good portion of luck,' said Academy skipper Knut FROSTAD (NOR) after he crossed the finish line just outside Sandhamn in the Swedish archipelago.
The Norwegian boat got an early lead on the five other boats in Nokia Oops Cup, but when it was time to sail round the southern tip of Gotland they sailed right in to a windless area. The crew had nothing to do than sit and wait for the others to catch up. They where glued to the spot and the wind came with the competitors. But FROSTAD won the restart with skipper Magnus 'Mange' OLSSON (SWE) on Nokia right behind.
During Tuesday night the headboardcar on Nokia broke and the sail came crashing down. The crew tried to repair it, but they soon realized it was useless. Last year OLSSON also had to pull out of the race when the whole mast came down.
With Nokia out of the game Stena Sovcomflot and her skipper Bruno PEYRON (FRA) proved to be the toughest competitor for FROSTAD. They where in shouting distance from each other and fought hard all the way to the finish line. The other three boats followed just behind most of the way.
Last year the trimarans finished the course in just about 24 hours. This year they had to use double that time and the average speed for Team Academy was 8.8 knots compared to last year's 13.66 knots.
Now the six teams are preparing for the start of the double-handed race between Sandhamn, Sweden and Sopot, Poland at 1400 hours local time today.
Results Eurocard Gotland Runt
(After 8 of 11 races)