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7 March 2008, 09:34 am
Another Day Lost At Bacardi Cup
Francesco BRUNI and Gilberto NOBILI at the 2008 Rolex Miami OCR
Francesco BRUNI and Gilberto NOBILI are battling for the Italian Olympic slot in Miami

Bacardi Cup 2008
Miami, Florida, USA

Another day of racing was lost at the Bacardi Cup on Thursday, although the Star fleet now face the prospect of a very windy final day of racing.
Racing was scheduled to start an hour earlier on Thursday for the fifth day of racing at the 81st annual Bacardi Cup. Some sailors arrived early and splashed their boats. Others started their day with breakfast at the yacht club and then pulled out their laptops and started to work because they were postponed on shore.

The race committee studied the glassy bay, the skies and weather forecasts. With thunderstorms and winds bouncing down from all around the compass expected, they abandoned racing for the day before 12:00.

Friday is the final day of racing and strong winds and possible thunderstorms are in the forecast. There is a lot riding on the final day of racing at the Bacardi Cup. For the Italian teams, the Bacardi Cup is the final of five regattas used in their Olympic Trials. Following two ISAF Grade 1 regattas, last year's World Championships and the 2007 Europeans, Diego NEGRI and Luigi VIALE are ahead in the point tally by 170 points over Francesco BRUNI and Gilberto NOBILI. BRUNI and NOBILI took 80 points out of NEGRI and VIALE's 250-point lead during US SAILING's Rolex Miami OCR by finishing seventh while NEGRI and VIALE did not qualify for the medal round and had to settle for 19th in the regatta.

With NEGRI and VIALE unable to clinch the Olympic berth in at the OCR, the teams took the Italian trials to the final round at the Bacardi Cup. Following three races over five days, NEGRI and VIALE are the top Italians and are sitting in sixth place with 35 points and BRUNI and NOBILI are 16 points behind them in 13th place. In order for BRUNI and NOBILI to make up their 170-point deficit, they have to place first or second in the regatta; a major feat even without an Olympic appearance hinging on the outcome. Whether there are no races or as many as two races, you can be sure that the two teams will be keeping an eye on the point spread throughout the day. Twelve Italian teams are racing in the Bacardi Cup, so it is assumed that they will add a special touch to the traditional Bacardi Cup awards ceremony. The winners must wait until they return home for the Italian federation to name them to their country's Olympic squad.

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

Lynn Fitzpatrick
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