After three good races off Portimao today Quantum Racing leads the TP52 Series fleet at the Portugal Trophy regatta.
Back on the waters where they won the 2008 Audi MedCup Circuit title a little less than a year ago, Terry Hutchinson and the crew of Quantum Racing gave themselves the best possible tonic after their disappointing seventh place finish last month in Sardinia when they won the first two races of the Portugal Trophy regatta today, then fought back to a well earned fourth place in the third contest to lead the event by three clear points.
It was an interesting, testing day for the ten TP52 crews off Portimao as the early, light sea breeze built for the first race before it gave way to the NW'ly gradient wind which offered two excellent races in which big gains and losses were available dependant on the shifty, puffy conditions presented racing closer to the Algarve shore.
Across the day it proved a comprehensive test, from the finesse and tactical racing of the light sea breeze to bursts of downwind planing in the third race the reigning champions proved to themselves they have the tools, skills and most all perhaps the confidence to win regattas. Their opening race win was their first winning gun since Marseille in June.
Their 1,1,4 for the day leaves them three points clear of 2007 champion owner-helm Torbjorn Tornqvist (SWE) and his team on Artemis who rolled out a consistent 3,4,2 to lead by two points a logjam of three teams on 11 points.
Local favourites Bigamist 7 lead the first race but failed to convert it to a winning gun, but they did make amends when they won the third race, holding off Artemis to lie third overall after the first day's racing.
GP42 Series Practice Race
Islas Canarias Puerto Calero (ESP) who won last month in Sardinia and lead the series won the GP42 Practice Race after Roma 2, driven by Paolo Cian, got off to the best start in this closely matched fleet. The Canarias team led by helmsman Jose Maria Ponce (ESP) passed all at the leeward gate to take the lead and hold it to the finish.
Making his GP42 Series debut as tactician on Turismo Madrid (ESP), veteran match racer and French America's Cup alumnist Philippe Presti shared his thoughts on racing in this small but intense fleet.
Audi MedCup Circuit 2009
Overall – Day 1
1. Quantum Racing (USA), 1+1+4= 6 points
2. Artemis (SWE), 3+4+2= 9 points
3. Bigamist (POR), 5+5+1= 11 points
4. Bribón (ESP), 6+2+3= 11 points
5. Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL), 2+3+6= 11 points
1. Islas Canarias Puerto Calero (ESP)
2. Roma (ITA)
3. Caser Endesa (ESP)
4. Turismo Madrid (ESP)
5. Airis (ITA)
Complete results: http://2009.medcup.org/results