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27 October 2008, 09:07 am
Quantum Racing Crowned TP52 World Champions
Onboard with 2008 TP52 World Champions Quantum Racing
Onboard with 2008 TP52 World Champions Quantum Racing

TP52 World Championship 2008
Puerto Calero, Lanzarote, Spain

American boat Quantum Racing helmed by Terry HUTCHINSON put a fantastic end to a spectacular season by winning the TP52 World Championship in Lanzarote.
After being crowned Audi MedCup champions last month, Quantum Racing won the world title after a week of tough racing in Puerto Calero.

"It's a really good end to this team's season," said Quantum Racing helmsman Terry HUTCHINSON (USA). "We are over the top with excitement and incredibly thankful to Quantum Sails for the opportunity they gave us to represent them in the way we did. I really can't thank everybody enough for the amount of work and support that went in this team."

Vasco VASCOTTO's (ITA) Mutua Madrileña takes the silver medal with a similarly good performance. The score table clearly reflects the tight nature of the TP52 fleet. Platoon, helmed by Jochen SCHUEMANN (GER), grabbed third place overall from Torbjörn TORNQVIST's (SWE) Artemis, the 2007 World Champion, at the last downwind leg of the championship's last race resulting in a mere 0.25 lead.

VASCOTTO, was gracious in defeat and paid tribute to the new World Champions, "First of all, I have to admit that won the boat that sailed the best. Quantum did a great job throughout a season and this World Championship is a gift to them," he said.

Two races were sailed in the closing day of the series on Saturday, both in strong (20 to 30 knots) but tricky conditions. The first race went underway with a 20 knot northeasterly breeze after a 30 minute postponement and was probably destined to be the shortest one the 14-strong fleet sailed in Puerto Calero. Its outcome was decided right on the starting line. While Quantum and Synergy had an excellent clean start, both Artemis and Mutua Madrileña, together with Desafío and Bigamist, were over the line. As a result, most of the suspense and nail-biting excitement everybody was hoping for evaporated. Again, the left played well and Quantum, Synergy and AUDI Q8 opted for it and led the race until the finish line. Top place was going back forth between the American and Russian boats with Synergy finally prevailing. Throughout the race, the left side was definitely favoured to the point that boats gybed only once in the first run. Mutua Madrileña and Artemis managed to recover a couple of spots but a ninth and 11th respectively meant they had no options towards the title.

After doing the complete quantum physics calculations, Quantum was World Champion before the start of the second race and the Americans decided to convert themselves to spectators in the last race of the series, in order to avoid influencing the tough three-way battle for second and third overall, taking place between Mutua Madrileña, Platoon and Artemis as any of these three boats could finish the championship in any of the two podium places. Artemis led from the start until the leeward gate when Desafío overtook them after picking the right shift and staging a great recovery through the fleet. With Artemis second and Platoon sixth at the bottom mark, the Swedish boat was guaranteed third overall in the championship. It proved too early to rule SCHUEMANN out and Platoon passed Cristabella and Bribón and in the final leg it was Matador's turn to surrender to the German attacks. Platoon crossed the finish line in the wake of Artemis and grabbed the bronze medal by the slimmest possible margin, 0.25 points.

Ed REYNOLDS, President of Quantum Sails and Project Manager of Quantum Racing, paid tribute to the quality of the competition in Puerto Calero. "The rest of the fleet was very toug. In each and every race we had great respect for all boats and teams. Every time we docked out we were thinking how we could be better than the day before. This victory was a tribute to the team and the whole project," he said.

"This was the best we sailed this year, the best we had the boat going and we never let up the entire year. It might have looked a little easier than it was but 90% of the work necessary to be in this position is done before you come here. We did the work upfront, we were prepared and this world title is a tribute to what great sailors they are," RENOLDS added.

Results - click here

Pierre Orphanidis
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