Darren BUNDOCK and Will HOWDEN are just one step away from tour victory in this year´s Volvo Champions Race. World and European Champion and his crew had a great day in Travemünde with two race victories and lead the third event of the new Super Series.
As the sympathic Australian, who won Silver in Sydney with John FORBES, also leads the overall rankings after two stops there is not much his rivals can do to prevent him from winning 5000 Euro for the victory today. But Bundy´s rivals have certainly not given up hope to still beat him in the event´s leaderboard and at least collect 3000 Euro for first place in Travemünde. Mitch BOOTH and Herbert DERCKSEN (14 points) from the Netherlands are just 4 points behind Bundock/Howden. Another point behind the Dutch are Sweden´s Martin STRANDBERG and Kristian MATTSSON (15 points) ahead of Peder and Sören RONHOLT (16 points).
5000 spectators celebrated another great day at Travemünde´s beach right in front of the town´s famous casino. Sunshine and 20 knots of gusty winds provided sailors and fans with perfect conditions to enjoy a very special sailing show of some of the world´s best athletes. At least a dozen 49ers capsized, others just managed the gusts but offered amazing stunts as near as 20 metres to the beach. Helge SACH, one of Germany´s top Tornado helmsman, explained the fascination of the short 20 minute courses right in front of the beach, "it´s great for us. It´s great for spectators. It´s fun. It´s exciting. It´s the future face of our sport. You have to admit, that longer Olympic style races tend to be a bit boring at times as only marginal technical differences lead to minimal speed advantages..."
Both Denmark´s Peter and Sören HANSEN and Germany´s 49er European Champions Marcus BAUR and Max GROY, will fight hard today for the overall purse. Whilst the Hansen Brothers are leading the overall tour rankings, Baur/Groy are sailing an almost flawless series in Travemünde. But as they are two points behind the Danes overall they have to hope for some help of other crews such as Poland´s Marcin CZAJKOWSKI and Kryszof KIERKOWSKI and Switzerland´s Tom RÜGGE and Jörg STEINER. Baur/Barth need to win in Travemünde and have at least two teams between themselves and the Danes to replace them on the top of the podium tomorrow afternoon. Baur smiled saying, "we have bought Tom and Jörg lots of drinks and also some Swiss Cheese. Maybe it helps..."
One day before the final showdown of the new German Super Series, Thomas HANEL, member of the board of Volvo Car Germany, gave an extremely positive statement to all those hoping that this series can be continued next year," the Volvo Champions Race is a huge success. As a company Volvo has reached all it´s targets and even more. The enormous interest of the spectators proves that we are on the right way. Without saying to much during running budget discussions I can say already that we will go on supporting sailing. With the Volvo Champions Race we have established a brand that we would like to develop further despite having no planning guarantee at present."
The competitors will say goodbye and thank you to their fans today with a stunt show presenting some artistic maneuvres such as handstand on one hull or waterskiing behind a Tornado.
Full results are available from the web address below.