Bribon Telefonica spearheaded the charge of Team Spain, the new overall leaders on day two of the Sardinia Rolex Cup - ISAF Offshore Team World Championship in Porto Cervo.
More or less perfect conditions off Porto Cervo allowed the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda's Race Committee to hold three windward-leeward races on day two of the Sardinia Rolex Cup. Sunshine, blue skies and 18 knots of west northwesterly winds accompanied the 15 boats that make up the five competing teams as they lined up for Wednesday's first start at midday. With a total of four races now completed Team Spain leads the overall classification on 25 points ahead of Team Italy on 34 points and third-placed Team Germany on 35.
The Spanish team - which led going into Wednesday's racing after Team Germany's Swan 45 Earlybird, owned by Hendrik BRANDIS, was disqualified late on Tuesday night following a protest - got off to a roaring start in the day's first race with Marco SALVI
's Swan 45 Telefonica Vertigo and Massimo MEZZAROMA
's Farr 40 San Miguel Telefonica Nerone both taking a first place. Pedro CAMPOS at the helm of the Spanish team's TP52 Bribon Telefonica only managed a fourth but was soon back on form taking a second and a first in races 3 and 4 respectively. Third place for both the Swan 45 and Farr 40 in race 3, combined with a first for SALVI and a second for MEZZAROMA in the third and final race of the day, was more than sufficient to leave the Iberian squad nine points ahead of Team Italy.
"Today we really had the starts down,"
said a satisfied Francesco BRUNI
, former Luna Rossa sailor and tactician on board Vertigo. "In the first and third race we were practically perfect. We are really strong on the upwind legs but downwind we are pretty much on a par with the rest of the fleet."
The star of the day for Team Italy was Vincenzo ONORATO
's Farr 40 Mascalzone Latino with Adrian STEAD on tactics who brought home a 2, 1, 3 score line. A first place in Wednesday's first race by Riccardo SIMONESCHI
's TP52 Audi powered by Q8 and Danilo SALSI
's second place in the same race with his Swan 45 DSK Comifin contributed to the team's second place in the overall classification, just one point ahead of Team Germany.
Germany's Platoon boasts a suitably impressive 1, 3, 1, 3 score line after four races, which is to be expected given that the TP52 is the new project keeping United Internet Team Germany busy while they wait for the America's Cup dust to settle. Earlybird's disqualification coupled with a fifth place in race four has raised the team's overall total score though and with no discard coming into play in this event the Teutonic sailors will need to do consistently well over the next three days to regain this lost ground. With another four more races scheduled however, all is still to play for.
The Race Committee has announced its intention to sail the distance race on Thursday. The start is scheduled for 12:00 and with more sunshine and approximately 15 to 20 knots of mistral wind predicted the many photographers following the regatta will be in for a treat as the fleet winds along the Sardinian coast and through the granite islands of the La Maddalena Archipelago.
Results - click here
Sardinia Rolex Cup - ISAF Offshore Team World Championship - click here
ISAF Offshore Team World Championship microsite - www.sailing.org/offshoreteamworlds