52 Super Series: Prep pays winning dividend for Quantum Racing

Quantum Racing took another step closer to her first 52 Super Series regatta win since July 2019, when she won the only race sailed today, at the Abanca 52 Super Series Baiona Sailing Week.
Key to the team’s success was a pre-race evaluation of the breeze variations on the challenging race track.

Working with training partners Gladiator and their local knowledge expert Roberto ‘Chuny’ Bermudez, the Quantum Racing team learned there was more wind pressure on the west side of the race course.

When they rounded the first mark in second place, chasing Harm Müller-Spreer’s Platoon hard, the event leaders had confidence in their choice to stay left down the run. Rewarded with the stronger breeze they expected they were able to pass Platoon before the leeward gate and went on to their second successive winning gun.

Then, compounding the German flagged team Platoon’s loss, the Plattner family’s Phoenix then pulled through to steal second on the second run by replicating the same tactic as Quantum with the same outcome.

Doug DeVos’ Quantum Racing now leads Platoon into the final day by four points with Phoenix poised in third three points behind. The South African Phoenix team came back after a disappointing, weighty 14pts Thursday to restore their impressive early momentum with a second place today.

After a short delay whilst the wind built enough on Baiona’s Ría de Vigo race area, Race 7 started in 7-8 knots. Platoon profited from her crew’s choice of the right side whilst Quantum Racing started best on the left end of the line. From there they were able to stay in clear air and use their good upwind boat speed to be chasing Platoon around the first turn.

“Everything is going our way now for the last three days really. That is the product of doing a lot of work and doing the right things at the right time and always going back to the basics – so having good starts, good speed upwind and keeping clean around the course.

I think we showed that getting a lane and being able to hold it all the way to the finish is good,” Michele Ivaldi, the Italian navigator of Quantum Racing said.

“From the weather model we could see there was more wind in the centre of the ‘lake’ because it is more like a lake here. And so we always decided we needed to go one side. We tried to always balance risk with reward.”

Ivaldi added, “In the warm-up, we tried a split with Gladiator from exactly where the top mark was and we gained 300 metres on Gladiator on that downwind. We made a big gain. We had no stress doing that. There was a lot more pressure. The island and the shore were very warm and they create a bubble and so there is more pressure in the middle of the bay.”

Ivaldi says tomorrow’s finale looks set to offer a new set of challenges: “We take every day as it come. There are still a lot of points on the table. But the wind direction will be different according for the forecast and so it will be a new game and a new strategy.”

Pleased with their second place today Phoenix bowman Juanpa Marcos said, “We had a tough day yesterday but we looked back at what we did wrong, we are happy today. We learned from what we did wrong and we went out to do our best. The second run was good. Now we put it all on the line tomorrow and try to win all the races on the last day.”

Standings after seven races:
1 Quantum Racing (USA) Doug DeVos 4,5,1,2,3,1,1 17pts
2 Platoon (GER) Harm Müller Spreer 5,1,2,4,4,2,3 21 pts
3 Phoenix (RSA) Hasso & Tina Plattner 1,3,3,1,8,6,2 24 pts
4 Interlodge (USA) Austin & Gwen Fragomen 6,4,4,6,2,9,4 35 pts
5 Vayu (THAI) Whitcraft family 2,2,8,5,5,7,7 36 pts
6 Sled (USA) Takashi Okura 3,6,5,7,7,4,4.5 36,5 pts
7 Alegre (GBR) Andy Soriano 9,7,6,3,9,3,5 42 pts
8 Gladiator (GBR) Tony Langley 7,8,7,8,1,8,10(3) 52 pts
9 Provezza (TUR) Ergin Imre 8,10,10.10,6,5,6 55 pts

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