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4 March 2008, 09:07 am
GRAEL And JORDAO Lead Bacardi Cup
Lars GRAEL and Marcelo JORDAO
Lars GRAEL and Marcelo JORDAO hit the overall lead after a win in race 2 on Monday

Bacardi Cup 2008
Miami, Florida, USA

Brazilians Lars GRAEL and Marcelo JORDAO moved into the overall lead at the Bacardi Cup after scoring victory in race 2 on Biscayne Bay.
It was another beautiful day on Biscayne Bay. The sea breeze that greeted sailors in the morning while they were launching their boats held while the 81st annual Bacardi Cup race committee attempted to get a start off at 12:00. Once, twice, three times you're out and unlike yesterday, everyone heeded the black flag and got off cleanly on the third attempt to start the race.

Predictions were for the wind to veer right throughout the day, but the group that favoured the right and protected the middle left found themselves looking pretty as a left shift came through. Mark REYNOLDS and Jamie GALE (USA) and Henry FILTER and Will WAGNER (USA) rounded 1, 2 ahead of Luca MODENA and Sergio LAMBERTENGHI (ITA). At least a third of the fleet over stood the port tack layline during their approach to the weather mark. You can imagine the bobbing and weaving that was done as the 109-fleet bore away on a run and the port tackers scrambled to reach the weather mark.

REYNOLDS and GALE held the lead down the run, but as the wind shifted so did positions. As Prof Maurice O'CONNELL (IRL), who rounded the weather mark well behind the leaders said, "We frantically tried to calculate the reciprocal of 135 and realized that the leaders were sailing high. We sailed a straight line down the middle," and rounded the left gate in third behind MODENA and LAMBERTENGHI and Diego NEGRI and Luigi VIALE (ITA). In the meantime, REYNOLDS and GAEL and Marin LOVROVIC JR and Sinisa MIKULICIC (CRO) rounded the right gate. With most of the fleet rounding the left gate, there was lots of noise - mostly shouting, but some crunching.

NEGRI and VIALE jumped out to a five boatlength lead over Mateusz KUSZNIEREWICZ and Dominik ZYCKI (POL) on the next shifty beat and REYNOLDS and GAEL held onto third. Afonso DOMINGOS and Bernardo SANTOS (POR) pulled into fourth with a string of Italians fighting for the spot on the Olympic team right on their tail. O'CONNELL and Ben COOKE were in pursuit also.

Positions continued to shift throughout the next two legs as the breeze hovered between 6 and 10 knots and MODENA and LAMBERTENGHI were able to hold the lead around the final leeward gate. The team that had a slow and steady climb through the fleet, Lars GRAEL and Marcelo JORDAO (BRA) moved from sixth place at the bottom of the final beat to first place by keeping an eye on local legend, Augie DIAZ and Phil TRINTER (USA) who favoured the mid-left during the final beat. The Brazilians won the race with MODENA and LAMBERTENGHI finishing second and the best Latin dancer (DIAZ) in the fleet and TRINTER right behind. Italians Alberto BAROVIER and Ferdinando COLANINNO, and Francesco BRUNI and Gilberto NOBILI finished fourth and fifth, respectively. O'CONNELL and COOKE held on to sixth.

GRAEL and JORDAO, who just finished second in the Brazilian Olympic Trials are sitting in the lead with eight points. DIAZ and TRINTER are in second and O'CONNELL and COOKE are in third for the regatta. Reigning World Champions Robert SCHEIDT and Bruno PRADA (BRA) lie in fourth overall.

Results - click here
Bacardi Cup - www.bacardicup.com

Lynn Fitzpatrick
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