Saturday, June 16, 2007

Valencia 12 Metre Regatta

Competitor List
1- ZINITA (1927)2- VANITY V (1936)3- TRIVIA (May 1937)4- WINGS (June 1937)5- SOVEREIGN (1963)6- IKRA (1964)7- VALIANT (1970)8- FREEDOM (1979)9- CHALLENGE 12 (1982)10- SOUTH AUSTRALIA (May 1985)11- WRIGHT ON WHITE (Dec 1985)12- HISSAR (Jan 1986)13- KIWI MAGIC (July 1986)

Friday, June 15, 2007

Valencia 12 Metre Boat Parade

The Valencia 12 metre regatta started today and before the first race the boats paraded in the Darsena in front of all the current America's Cup team bases.
The 12 metre class was used in the America's Cup between 1958 and 1987.

Kiwi Magic. Photo Copyright The Sailing Scoop

Hissar. Photo Copyright The Sailing Scoop

Freedom. Photo Copyright The Sailing Scoop

Challenge Australia. Photo Copyright The Sailing Scoop

Ikra. Photo Copyright The Sailing Scoop

Photo Copyright The Sailing Scoop

Challenge 12. Photo Copyright The Sailing Scoop

Photo Copyright The Sailing Scoop

Zinita. Photo Copyright The Sailing Scoop

Valiant. Photo Copyright The Sailing Scoop

Photo Copyright The Sailing Scoop

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

ISAF World Match Race Rankings

Source: ISAF

Ian WILLIAMS (GBR) holds on to the world #1 spot, keeping the on form Mathieu RICHARD (FRA) at bay. Although WILLIAMS could only place 11th and lost his World Championship lead at the latest stage of the World Match Racing Tour, his brilliant early season form keeps him safely in the top spot. However RICHARD has taken a big chunk out the gap between the top two, as the ISAF Nations Cup winner enjoyed a fantastic May. First of all he donned the Crimson Blazer after winning the ISAF Grade 1 Congressional Cup in Long Beach, before zipping back across the Atlantic to take second place at the ISAF Grade WC Match Race Germany and the overall lead in the World Championship Standings.

Claire LEROY's (FRA) reign as the women's world #1 match racer continues as she stands firm at the top of the Rankings for the 20th consecutive release. Since knocking Marie BJÖRLING (SWE) off the top spot on 4 May 2005, the 27 year old French skipper has recorded ten ISAF Graded event wins and 21 top-three finishes to maintain her world #1 Ranking. However, LEROY's dominance of the World Rankings has yet to be reflected in the ISAF Women's Match Racing World Championship, a statistic she will be looking to put right when the Worlds come to her home waters in France this August.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Louis Vuitton Final - Match 5

Another light and shifty day for the Louis Vuitton Final. Luna Rossa managed to win the favoured right hand side at the start and were first to tack off to the right with ETNZ following close behind. When Luna Rossa returned onto to starboard tack near the layline she did not have that half boat length advantage to force ETNZ to tack well to leeward or consider ducking and going further out to the right. Instead ETNZ tacked about 1.5 boat lengths to leeward and slightly ahead of Luna Rossa. Unfortunately Luna Rossa were unable to live there and had to once again tack off to the starboard layline. ETNZ followed and carried Luna Rossa past the layline and almost into the spectator craft! By the first windward mark ETNZ was 20 seconds ahead. On the run, Luna Rossa did well to hold ETNZ and it seems the change in bulb wings and mainsail helped the boat perform a little better.
On the second beat Luna Rossa engaged ETNZ in a tacking duel but they did not make any mistakes, rounding the top mark again with a 20 second lead. On the run to the finish however Luna Rossa closed the gap from 60 to 30 metres at one stage, but it was all too late ETNZ crossed the finish line 22 seconds ahead and secured their right to race Alinghi in the America´s Cup.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Louis Vuitton Final - Match 4

In a light 7-8knot easterly breeze ETNZ come from behind (however brief) to win the fourth match of the Louis Vuitton final. The call on the ETNZ boat was for a clean start and favour the upper left side of the course. However, in the split tack start Luna Rossa started at the boat on port and sailed for about 2 minutes before tacking back toward ETNZ. When ETNZ tacked to port Luna Rossa crossed ahead by 100 metres and tacked on top of ETNZ forcing them back to the left. When the two boats converged again ETNZ was in a nice lefty with pressure and cut Luna Rossa's lead to 60 metres. Luna Rossa tacked to leeward and ahead protecting what they thought was the favoured right hand side. But ETNZ were fully hooked in this left hander and simply sailed higher and faster than Luna Rossa. ETNZ had them pinned to the layline and when both boats tacked simltaneously to the top mark ETNZ extended rounding 19 seconds ahead.

Toward the end of the downwind leg Luna Rossa threw 2 extra gybes in a desperate effort to close on ETNZ, but then chose the wrong gate mark. ETNZ ahead by 54 seconds. Luna Rossa tried again to close on ETNZ by engaging them in a tacking duel but to no avail ETNZ ahead at the second winward mark by 1 minute. ETNZ finishing 52 seconds ahead Luna Rossa and lead the series 4-0.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Louis Vuitton Final - Match 3

A light 8-10 knot sea breeze greeted the Finalists of the Louis Vuitton Cup today in Valencia. In contrast to previous days, Luna Rossa took complete control of the start after entering from the starboard end of the start line. Both boats were in along dial up and Luna Rossa prevented ETNZ getting to the right hand side. With 1:30 to go the boats were still above the start line head to wind. They fell away onto port tack and it looked like a great opportunity to for James Spithill to make a kill and luff ETNZ head to wind before gybing and returning to the start line. But Luna Rossa gybed away allowing ETNZ to follow, Luna Rossa heading toward the middle of the line with speed but ETNZ tacking around and start with about 3 knots less speed than Luna Rossa.

With an immediate 40 metre advantage to Luna Rossa it looked like a great opportunity for them to tack and cross ETNZ. (text book sailing says "cross when you can!"). However Luna Rossa kept heading out on starboard whilst ETNZ to windward hooked into a little more pressure and returned the advantage line in their favour. By the time Luna Rossa were left with no choice but to tack the Kiwi's were 2 boat lengths ahead and rounded the first windward mark 40 seconds ahead.

True to form ETNZ stayed between their opposition and the next mark extending on every leg to win by a whopping 1:38. ETNZ 3 - Luna Rossa 2.

Is this the beginning of the end?

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Louis Vuitton Final - Match 2

ETNZ went two up on Luna Rossa in Saturday's second match of the Louis Vuitton Final. Once again the sea breeze filled in on cue maintaining a constant 13knots and veering 5 degrees to the right during the race. It was quite obvious in the prestart that both boats wanted to start on the right and go right. Luna Rossa managed to start on the right hand side of ETNZ but were slow when the gun fired and immediately had to tack away onto port. ETNZ quickly followed and both boats took a long port tack out to the right hand side. Unfortunately for Luna Rossa they did not receive a little right hand shift and when they eventually tacked back onto starboard, ETNZ were able to tack directly in front forcing Luna Rossa onto port. Both boats then commenced a tacking duel up the right hand side of the course before Luna Rossa was left with no runway and were forced to follow ETNZ into the windward mark rounding 25 seconds ahead. ETNZ then kept a loose cover on Luna Rossa in contrast to previous races extending their lead on each leg to finally win by 40 seconds.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Louis Vuitton Final - Match 1

What a great race we saw today between two fine teams Luna Rossa & Emirates Team New Zealand (ETNZ). ETNZ's weather team did a fantastic job making the call for Dean Barker and his boys to protect the right hand side up the first beat and they did successfully. Both boats took a long port tack out to the right and near the starboard layline. ETNZ tacked first and were advanced far enough forward to make Luna Rossa tack to leeward. Luna Rossa did well early on this tack however and took some gauge out of ETNZ. But near the windward mark ETNZ received a nice little right hand shift and sheered off Luna Rossa enable them to round 12 seconds ahead. Luna Rossa managed to put pressure on ETNZ during the first downwind leg but ETNZ held the lead to round 9 seconds ahead. True to form ETNZ then kept a close cover never letting Luna Rossa any opportunity to pass. ETNZ win by 8 seconds in a close much. It looks like this finals series may require the full 9 matches to decide the worthy winner.