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11 October 2003, 11:41 am
Final Event Shapes Up
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Volvo Champions Race

2000 spectators watched the first two races of each the Tornado and 49er class at Day 1 of the last Volvo Champions Race in the 2003 season.
The fans enjoyed spectacular action, especially when the crew rounded the windward mark, that was placed as near as 20 metres to the beach of Travemünde. More than a dozen capsized 49ers (and even two Tornados!) proved how hard it is even for the best Olympic sailors in the world to control those sensible racing machines in gusty 25 knots of breeze.

Two German crews, 49er European Champions Marcus BAUR and Max GROY and three times Tornado World Champion Roland GÄBLER and Gunnar STRUCKMANN dominated their fleets at the first day of the three-day-series. Whilst there is some fierce competition for the events purse of 13.000 Euro the battle for the overall prizes is even harder. The best team of each class in the overall rankings after three events will be rewarded with 5000 Euro. A total purse of 35.500 Euro is up for grabs at the final prize giving ceremony on Sunday.

Tornado World Champion Darren BUNDOCK and his friend and sparring partner Roland GÄBLER are the top favourites for this final showdown of the new Super Series that is hoped to be continued next year. Bundock leads the overall rankings with 28 points but by just two points ahead of his closest rival Gäbler who defends another three points advantage over Denmark´s Peder and Sören RONHOLT. Because they missed one of the three Volvo Champions Races, Mitch BOOTH and Herbert DERCKSEN have no chance to reach a top three position in the overall rankings but they are definitely on for the event´s podium places in Travemünde.

Another German/Danish duel is on in the 49er class where Peter and Sören HANSEN lead the overall rankings with 29 points ahead of Baur/Groy (26 points). A maximum of twelve races will be started in Travemünde before the overall winners will be celebrated. Full results are available on the event website at the address below.
Tatjana Pokorny (As Amended by ISAF News Editor)
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