Girls on Film

Girls on Film

Mortons set the pace at the 5.5 Metre Alpen Cup at Riva

Sport

20/04/2024 - 09:32
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The Jean Genie (GBR 43, Peter Morton, Andrew Palfrey, Ruairidh Scott) extended their lead at the 2024 5.5 Metre Alpen Cup at Riva del Garda after the second day of racing, which brought significantly more wind. Girls on Film (GBR 41, Louise Morton, Sam Haines, Andrew Mills) moved up to second, while Artemis (NOR 57, Kristian Nergaard, Johan Barne, Trond Solli-Saether) is now in third with just two races two sail on Saturday.

After a tough day of racing, the race wins went to Girls on Film, The Jean Genie and Ku-Ring-Gai III (AUS 66, John Bacon, Joost Houweling, Ed Wright).

The tone for the day was set on the first beat with the fleet splitting right and left and some surprised faces at the top mark when the left came in strong. Some later tried the right and were equally surprised. Getting to grips with the phase of the wind was crucial to success and very few got it right all day.

The day started with a 12-14 knot southerly and gradually increased through the three races to top out at 20-25 knots for the final race. The racing proved much more interesting with both sides of the course coming into play. It was still very cold on the water, but at least the sun was shining most of the day.

Girls on Film led from start to finish in Race 4, with New Moon III (BAH 25, Mark Holowesko, Christoph Burger, Peter Vlasov) close behind round the first lap, but with further shifts, the British boat extended for a clean win.

Louise Morton said, “It was a really windy Garda cold day, and I was a bit nervous, but we nailed the first race which was amazing.”

On being in Riva, “I am loving Riva. It’s been lovely to be in the town and we are enjoying the old town and walking to the restaurants and accommodation, and the yacht club has been fantastic, so I am really pleased.”

Andrew Mills, “It was interesting compared to yesterday. The committee boat and course was a bit further left, so a little but less sure the right would pay, but we good a good start on starboard but couldn’t quite cross the fleet so our plans were made for us to keep going left, which turned out was the side to be. We had good boatspeed and we rounded first and slowly slid away from everyone from there.”

Likewise, The Jean Genie, dominated race 5 for a huge win, while Artemis sailed the first of two great races to record two second places. Then in the final race Ku-Ring-Gai III got clear of the fleet for another big win.

The Jean Genie has now won three races out of six, and is discarding a fourth, so the pressure is on Peter Morton to win the Alpen Cup for a third time. The biggest threat comes from his wife on Girls on Film, so this will be an interesting battle on Saturday.

Mills commented on the quality of the fleet, “All the top guys in the moderns are here so it’s very similar to a worlds, so pretty happy with how we are doing so far. If you get a good start, it can look like it’s easy but if you are a couple of metres back off the line or not sailing well for the first minute, then you are in the pack fighting in 10th or 11th and it’s not easy to get out of there at all.”

Unfortunately, a collision between New Moon and Otto (NOR 69, Bent Christian Wilhelmsen, Lasse Berthelsen, Herve Cunningham) a few minutes before the start of Race 6, meant neither finished, though New Moon received redress and sits just 0.5 points behind Artemis going into the final day

John Bacon was happy to end his day with a win.

“It was pretty windy today and we didn’t have a good start to the day. We went left when everyone on the right did well and then we went right ad everyone on the left did well. It wasn’t ideal. But then in the last race the wind was coming in and we had a fantastic start at the boat, tacked straight away and were in the lead at the top mark by miles, and it was really pleasant. It was a nice finish to the day and to finally got a bullet with the new crew, so I couldn’t be more happy.”

On the new crew, “We are now fully multicultural with Ed Wright from England and Joost Houweling from The Netherlands. We are still coming to terms trying to make a team of ourselves, but after today, we are looking good for the rest of the event and going on to the World Championship in Benodet.”

On the conditions, “Riva is great. This is hallowed ground for sailing, I have sailed here once before. Last time I came it wasn’t too windy, but it’s great to have 20 knots today and grappling these boats round the course is a lot of fun. And the sun’s out even though it feels like four degrees! I never wear so many clothes when I sail.”

Racing concludes on Saturday with two more races scheduled early morning.

Results after 6 races
1 The Jean Genie (GBR 43, Peter Morton, Andrew Palfrey, Ruairidh Scott) 9
2 Girls on Film (GBR 41, Louise Morton, Sam Haines, Andrew Mills) 14
3 Artemis (NOR 57, Kristian Nergaard, Johan Barne, Trond Solli-Saether) 18
4 New Moon III (BAH 25, Mark Holowesko, Christoph Burger, Peter Vlasov) 18.5
5 Otto (NOR 69, Bent Christian Wilhelmsen, Lasse Berthelsen, Herve Cunningham) 21

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