TP 52 Azzurra (Photo by M. Melandri)
52 Super Series: Azzurra is ready for the Zadar Royal Cup
Azzurra, the boat flying the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda’s burgee, is in Croatia for the second event in the 2018 52 Super Series, the professional sailing circuit that is the most important sailing class for monohulls. The Zadar Royal Cup is set to begin tomorrow and will run until June 24th.
There are eleven TP52 lined up at the docks of the Sukosan Marina, located on the Dalmatian coast just a few miles from Zadar, for the second event in the 52 Super Series 2018, the Zadar Royal Cup.
Five days of windward/leeward races are scheduled and there will also be one coastal race of about 30 miles through the islands of the Dalmatian Archipelago. The coastal race is scheduled for June 21st.
The Royal Cup is a challenge trophy originally created for the IMS 50 Class by King Harald of Norway. The TP52s have continued the tradition and now incorporate it in one of the events in the 52 Super Series. In 2017 Azzurra won the Royal Cup in Miami, so she is all the more motivated to win here in Zadar where she also and above all aims at reducing the points between her team and the current Series leaders, Quantum Racing and Platoon.
Azzurra, defending champion in the Series, is joined on the water by another Italian team, Luna Rossa, who is competing in this top professional circuit as part of her bid for the 36th America’s Cup. Quantum Racing, an offshoot of the New York Yacht Club’s team American Magic, is also eyeing the AC and a crew from Team New Zealand is aboard Sled. But in a circuit that is this competitive, any team could win. For example, Onda, the Brazilian team with Olympic medallist Robert Scheidt as tactician, is tied for points with Azzurra.
Today saw the practice race while the event will officially begin tomorrow at 12 noon. Two options for the racecourse are being considered: one off Sukosan and the other north of Zadar. The forecast calls for unstable winds caused by thermal breezes from the northwest encountering the area’s infamous Bora, strong north-easterly katabatic wind in the Adriatic Sea. During the past day’s training sessions shifts of up to 40 degrees and sudden changes of intensity have been registered depending on which type of wind is predominant.
Racing can be followed via Virtual Eye on the website 52superseries.com and on azzurra.it. Azzurra’s Facebook and Twitter accounts will have real time updates directly from the regatta course and starting on Friday the 22nd there will be live coverage in streaming on the same channels.
Skipper Guillermo Parada had these words: “Up to now we have been sailing in very unstable conditions, both in wind direction and in intensity. It has been complicated, and we don’t know if this is an unusual situation around these parts or if it’s normal here because this is the first time we have raced here. If these conditions keep up it’s going to be really hard for everyone, including the Race Committee because it will be hard to set up the course. Our boat is well tuned and we’re hoping to do a good job.”
Azzurra’s tactician Santiago Lange echoes Parada’s words: “It looks like it’s going to be a tough week, especially if the unstable conditions we have seen so far persist. We have to stay concentrated to sail well and recover the points we lost in Šibenik. It’s going to be a tough event from a tactical standpoint, but I like challenges.”
52 Super Series Zadar Royal Cup - Entries:
Alegre – Andy Soriano (USA/GBR), 2018 Botin
Azzurra – Alberto/Pablo Roemmers (ARG/ITA), 2018 Botin
Gladiator – Tony Langley (GBR), 2016 Botin
Luna Rossa – Patrizio Bertelli (ITA), 2018 Botin
Onda – Eduardo de Souza Ramos (BRA), 2018 Botin
Paprec Recyclage – Jean Luc Petithuguenin (FRA), 2015 Vrolijk
Phoenix – Hasso/Tina Plattner (RSA), 2018 Botin
Platoon – Harm Müller-Spreer (GER), 2018 Vrolijk
Provezza – Ergin Imre (TUR), 2018 Vrolijk
Quantum Racing – Racing Doug DeVos (USA), 2018 Botin
Sled – Takashi Okura (USA), 2018 Botin
52 SUPER SERIES 2018
Sibenik 52 SUPER SERIES Sailing Week
May 23rd - 27th, Sibenik, Croatia
52 SUPER SERIES Zadar Royal Cup
June 20th - 24th, Zadar, Croatia
ROLEX TP52 World Championship Cascais 2018
July 17th - 21st, Cascais, Portugal
Puerto Portals 52 SUPER SERIES Sailing Week
August 21st - 25th, Mallorca, Spain
52 SUPER SERIES Valencia Sailing Week
September 18th - 22nd, Valencia, Spain
Pablo and Alberto Roemmers - Owners
Guillermo Parada - Skipper, Helm
Santiago Lange - Tactician
Bruno Zirilli - Navigator
Giovanni Cassinari - Mainsail
Mariano Caputo - Bowman
Juan Pablo Marcos - Midbow
David Vera - Pitman
Grant Loretz- Trimmer
Ciccio Celon - Trimmer
Mariano Parada - Trimmer
Gabriel Marino - Grinder
Alejandro Colla – Grinder
Nicola Pilastro - Grinder
Pedro Rossi- Boat Captain
Coach: Guillermo Baquerizas
Coach: Marco Capitani