Race day four at the Gazprom Swan 60 World Championship saw both new and familiar faces at the front of the fleet. In shifty conditions with the wind from between 210° to 220° and pressure from 9 to 11 knots, the two windward leeward races challenged the crews as gear changes through the pressure became paramount to success.
The first race of the day saw the Gazprom Swan 60 fleet underway with a clean start with Tsaar Peter (RUS) sailed by the Gazprom Youth Sailing Challenge with an early advantage. They held that round the first lap of the course before their seasoned competitors onboard Bronenosec (RUS) and Windward (CHN) made a tactical decision through the gate at the end of the run that enabled them to gain an advantage over Tsaar Peter and ultimately over take them to lead into the windward mark, the position each held to the finish line.
Sergey Bordinirov, Team Coach for the Gazprom Youth Sailing Challenge onboard Tsaar Peter commented:
“We had a very good start in the first race and our first few tacks were really good, the wind was very good for us as and we worked well. Our leeward mark rounding was not good and two boats overtook us so as a result we were third past the finishing line.
“In the second race we had a bad start as one of the other boats made a mistake near us and as a result we were last; we pushed hard to improve this and overtook SGM to finish 6th in that race. Overall the youth team are doing great and I can see many of them have a fantastic future of racing ahead.”
Race two in similar conditions saw Spirit of Europe (BVI) take their first win of the series over Bronenosec (RUS). The Danish team onboard Vertical Smile also recorded their best result of the series as crew work and tactics came together and delivered a fourth place.
Peter Lerbrandt, Vertical Smile owner driver commented: “The second race was the best race we have had so far; we had a good start, coming out with good speed and finishing fourth. Bronenosec was well ahead but we were enjoying very close racing with the rest of the fleet.”
The series results will include a discard after eight races and the team set to benefit most from this are the Chinese team onboard Swan 60 Windward. Mr Fan, owner and helm of Windward commented: “I am glad we finally had a good result because the whole team has been working hard; finally we got the results we wanted. We were trying to use more of a conservative strategy to get the start we wanted, this paid off as we performed well and I am happy with the result. It is great to take part in our first Gazprom Swan 60 World Championship. In Palma the weather, the other teams and the organisation are all great and I am really enjoying it.”
The Gazprom Swan 60 Owners and their guests will enjoy an exclusive dinner at Port Blanc on Friday night where the successes and stresses of the days racing will be shared with one another.
Bronenosec (RUS): 1 – 4 – 3 – 1 – 1 – 1 – 2 – Total 13
Petite Flamme (RUS): 3 – 7 – 1 – 3 – 4 – 5 – 3 – Total 25
Spirit of Europe (BVI): 4 – 6 – 6 – 3 – 2 – 6 – 1 – Total 28
Gazprom Youth Sailing Challenge, Tsaar Peter (RUS): 2 – 1 – 5 – 7 – 6 – 3 – 6 – Total 30
Windward (CHN): DSQ – 3 – 4 – 6 – 3 – 2 – 5 – Total 31
German Offshore Challenger, SGM (GER): 6 – 2 – 2 – 4 – 7 – 4 – 7 – Total 32
Vertical Smile (DEN): 5 – 5 – 7 – 5 – 5 – 7 – 4 – Total 38