Azzurra consolides her leadership in the 52 Super Series
Azzurra has lengthened her lead to seven points with just one day of racing left in the Menorca 52 Super Series, the final of six events in 52 Super Series 2017 that began in January in Key West, Florida. Today, September 23rd will be decisive for the season’s outcome.
Yesterday saw some tense moments with Azzurra, Platoon and Quantum, the three potential candidates for victory overall in the 2017 season, alternating moments of glory with moments of difficulty. The first race started punctually at 12:00 PM in easterly winds at 8-10 knots. Azzurra made a slight mistake at the start and then had to make a difficult, if spectacular, comeback to finish sixth. Quantum won followed by Gladiator and Sled. Platoon, the team that is just behind Azzurra in the Series overall, was fourth.
The second race got underway in conditions similar to the first. Azzurra, Bronenosec and Paprec chose the left and got excellent starts. Platoon and Provezza were OCS and had to turn back and start again, this time from the back of the fleet. Shifty, unstable breezes penalised some, but helped others: when the wind shifted 20 degrees to the right Platoon managed to recover positions up to sixth place while Azzurra placed a solid second behind the winning team, Bronenosec. Paprec surprised everyone and placed third, but her points will only count for the victory in Menorca, not in the Super Series overall, because she missed most of the season after dismasting in Miami early in the season.
The whole fleet finished this race within a minute from the first to the last placed team, further proof of the high level of talent and competition in the 52 Super Series. In this tight pack, Quantum finished ninth, but just seconds after the rest of the fleet. She lost some very important points today, but still has a chance at winning the 52 Super Series 2017 overall. Azzurra and Platoon, in the top positions and separated by 7 points, have the best chance of capturing the season’s victory.
For the time being, Azzurra is tied with Gladiator for first place in the Menorca 52 Super Series Sailing Week and Quantum and Platoon are tied for third. Bronenosec is just two points behind them even though today was an uneven day: her team placed first in the second race after having placed tenth in the first.
The fleet did not manage to get three races in yesterday as hoped because the shifty breezes were also dying down. Today, the final day both of this event and of the 52 Super Series 2017, racing is scheduled to start at 11:30 CEST in light easterly breezes. Live streaming of the races with commentary in English is on the websites www.52superseries.com and www.azzurra.it.
Pablo Roemmers, Azzurra’s owner: “Tomorrow the 52 Super Series 2017 ends. There are just a couple of races left to go and it has been years since the final victory has come down to the last day like this. It just goes to show how competitive the 52 Super Series is. Either way it goes for us tomorrow, it has been a great season. We are going to stay concentrated and give it our best.”
Guillermo Parada, skipper: “It was a crucial day for us, everything counts double this week. Going into the final day we’re ahead by a slim margin, but we’re still in the lead. We got a very bad start in the first race and that made our life more difficult, but we managed to stay calm and work our way back up through the fleet and recover very, very important points. In the second race we reset our heads, got a good start and were able to pick our lanes again and we managed to place second. Bronenosec was trying to slow us down and gave us a bit of worry, but we got a good second and that gives us a bit of a margin. Overall it was a good day, and there’s only one to go. We’re still in the lead so we have to keep doing what we’re doing and hopefully things will go our way tomorrow.”
Vasco Vascotto, tactician: “This is it. The tension is rising, but we’re happy with the way we’re sailing. In the second race we got a good start and everything was easier than in the first race where we had to fight to recover. But we can be proud of the way we sailed and of the fact that we limited the damage to our score overall. You can’t take anything for granted in a fleet like this and now we have to finish our job. Easier said than done, but we’re concentrated and determined.”
52 SUPER SERIES Provisional Scoreboard Overall
1. Azzurra (Alberto e Pablo Roemmers, ITA/ARG), 192 p.
2. Platoon (GER, Harm Müller-Spreer), 199 p.
3. Quantum Racing (Doug DeVos, USA), 203 p.
4. Provezza (Ergin Imre, TUR) 240,3 p.
5. Bronenosec (Vladimir Liubomirov, RUS), 266 p.
6. Rán Racing (Niklas Zennström, SWE), 293 p.
7. Sled (Takashi Okura, USA), 281 p.
8. Gladiator (Tony Langley, GBR) 309,6 p.
9. Alegre (Andrés Soriano GBR/USA), 345,3 p.
52 SUPER SERIES – Menorca 52 SUPER SERIES Sailing Week, after 6 races:
1. Azzurra (Alberto e Pablo Roemmers, ITA/ARG) (1,4,6,3,6,2) 22 punti.
2. Gladiator (Tony Langley, GBR) (2,3,7,4,2,4) 22 p.
3. Quantum Racing (Doug DeVos, USA), (4,7,2,2,1,9) 25 p.
4. Platoon (Harm Müller-Spreer, GER), (6,2,1,6,4,6) 25 p.
5. Bronenosec (Vladimir Liubomirov, RUS), (9,1,5,1,10,1) 27 p.
6. Provezza (Ergin Imre, TUR) (5,6,3,7,11,5) 37 p.
7. Paprec Recyclage (Jean-Luc Petithuguenin, FRA) (8,9,4,9,5,3) 38 p.
8. Sled (Takashi Okura, USA), (3,8,8,10,3,10) 42 p.
9. Rán Racing (Niklas Zennström, SWE), (7,10,9,8,8,8) 50 p.
10. Alegre (Andrés Soriano GBR/USA) (10,11,UFD12,5,7,7) 52 p.
11. Sorcha (Peter Harrison GBR) (11,5,10,11,9,11) 57 p.
Pablo and Alberto Roemmers - Owners
Guillermo Parada - Skipper, Helm
Vasco Vascotto - Tactician
Bruno Zirilli - Navigator
Giovanni Cassinari - Mainsail
Mariano Caputo - Bowman
Juan Pablo Marcos - Midbow
David Vera - Pitman
Maciel Cichetti - Trimmer
Ciccio Celon - Trimmer
Mariano Parada - Trimmer
Gabriel Marino - Grinder
Alejandro Colla – Grinder
Nicola Pilastro - Grinder
Klaus Lange - Guest
Pedro Rossi- Boat Captain
Coach: Guillermo Baquerizas
Coach: Marco Capitani