In contrast to Sunday's breezy conditions that produced some incredibly close and on the edge of control racing, a gentle breeze of 5-6 knots ruffled the waters inside the port of Almeria requiring maximum concentration and good crew weight distribution to optimize boat speed. Paul Campbell-James and the boys on The Wave, Muscat knew they had to put in a strong performance and they redeemed themselves admirably, posting two wins in the fleet races and winning the final match race against Guichard: "We couldn't be happier! We are back in the game and it's all to play for tomorrow. We are on a come back and they are going down so it should be interesting tomorrow," said Campbell-James. "We're pumped, it's not only overall for this event, it's overall for the whole series that we are playing for tomorrow. The whole year is down to one single day and I can imagine it will be decided in the last race."
Groupe Edmond de Rothschild came into the season as favourites, finishing second overall in 2009, but it has been the 'young guns' on the Omani team that have pushed them every step of the way: "It was a hard day for us but we keep the lead with the same points as The Wave, Muscat so it will be a big fight tomorrow. I'm really looking forward to tomorrow, we are feeling good and the competition should be high. The weather will be different tomorrow with more wind. But as usual we will take it race by race," said Guichard. "We're still leading the event here and that's the main thing. The Wave had a really good day today while for us we struggled a little bit at the start."
Desperate for an event win is the British team led by Mike Golding on Ecover Sailing Team, and they started the day with good intentions. Ecover won the first fleet race and three races later Guichard, Campbell-James and Golding were all on equal points of 76 going into the fourth race. Helmsman Leigh McMillan sailed a cracking race to put Ecover top of the leaderboard. Sadly, the glory was short-lived - a fifth and sixth place plus losing their match race scuppered their chances. However, nothing is decided yet with a full schedule of racing set for Tuesday and the game is still wide open for Ecover to get back in the mix.
Loick Peyron and his crew on Oman Sail Masirah had an up and down day, and although they have managed to hold on to their fourth place in the event rankings, Franck Cammas (Groupama) is within three points: "It was a good day for us, we won a race and made it to the top three several times and we ended the day on a victory in our match race," said Cammas. "We're within reach of Masirah, Ecover in third is a bit further but tomorrow should be a great day with a nice battle." Roman Hagara's Red Bull Extreme Sailing team now have their work cut out for them if they want to overhaul Cammas to claim the overall fifth place that these two teams are vying for.
The home team of Rumbo Almeria skippered by Guillermo Altadill delighted the local crowds by scoring a second in the first race of the day and now have 54 points, putting them in sixth place going into the final day. Not bad for a team that have had hardly any preparation or training time. Go Almeria!
Extreme Sailing Series™ Almeria Results after Day 3
1 Groupe Edmond de Rothschild, Yann Guichard, 97 points
2 The Wave, Muscat, Paul Campbell-James, 97 points
3 Ecover, Mike Golding, 91 points
4 Oman Sail Masirah, Loick Peyron, 78 points
5 Groupama 40, Franck Cammas, 75 points
6 Rumbo Almeria, Guillermo Altadill, 54 points
7 Red Bull Extreme Sailing, Roman Hagara, 49 points
8 Team Emirates New Zealand, Dean Barker, 47 points
Extreme Sailing Series™ 2010 Overall Standings after Trapani
1 The Wave, Muscat 28 points
2 Groupe Edmond de Rothschild 27 points
3 Ecover Sailing Team 25 points
4 Oman Sail Masirah 24 points
5 Groupama 40 12 points
6 Red Bull Extreme Sailing 12 points
7 The Ocean Racing Club 8 points
8 Team GAC Pindar 3 points
For more information visit: www.extremesailingseries.com