Competitors enjoyed lighter easterly breezes but also cold rain in today's 1.75-point long distance race of the 2010 ORCi World Championship, hosted by the Flensburger Segler Club (FSC).
The 67- mile course out to the Kieler Bucht and back for the 21-boat Alpha Division was won by Bremen-based Christian Plump's Rodman 42 Beluga Sailing Team (GER), who have now overtaken series leaders Bohemia Express (CZE) by just over three points after two inshore and two offshore races. Runner-up in this division was the local based IMX 40 Veolia, owned by Sven Christensen and T. Bastiansen.
And while this may seem extremely close at this half-way point in the competition, the series standings in Beta Division are even closer, with a tie in points between Jurgen Klinghardt's X-332 Sport patent 3 (GER), who has been the series front-runner until now, and Erik van Vuuren's Salona 37 Salona (NED). In fact, it was another Dutch team, Hein van Schaik's Dehler 39 Redan (NED), finishing in third place which gave the visiting Dutch teams impressive 2-3 finishes for the day.
Scoring yet another offshore race victory in this division's shorter 58-mile course was Heiko Pasler's X-362 Sport Static Electric (GER), who would no doubt be higher in the standings were it not for a DSQ earned in the first inshore race. But their victory today was close, correcting over Salona by a mere 7 seconds.
"I suppose we enjoy the breezy offshore conditions," said Pasler, who hails from Cuxhaven at the North Sea terminus of the Elbe River. Laughing at the 7-second margin of victory over Salona, Pasler explained "We actually have not raced together as a team much this year - I have been sailing on other boats - but the long upwind legs Ithink favour us, especially in strong winds."
In yesterday's blustery short offshore race, the Beluga crew suffered a broken boom, so their road to victory today started last night when part of the team drove nearly all night to source a replacement boom from another Rodman 42 based in the Far East coast of Germany, near the Polish border. Meanwhile, repairs were made to the broken boom as well.
"The team has done a fantastic job," said Plump, who won the 2009 ORCi European Championship in Ystad, Sweden. "And even with little sleep we managed to extend ahead of our group first four minutes at Geltinger Bucht, then another four minutes on the way past Kegnaes on the Danish side. Then coming downwind Daikin Airco (NED) was coming at us very fast downwind and just got us at the finish, but not in corrected time."
After two consecutive days of offshore racing, the exhausted crews in the 55-boat fleet will get a chance to sleep in the morning, as inshore racing resumes tomorrow at 1155 local time. Tomorrow's forecast calls for light winds as a weak low-pressure system passes over the area.
Further information, photos, results and documents for the 2010 ORCi World Championship can be found on the Flensburg Segel-Club website: http://www.fsc.de/regatten/orci-worlds-2010