Cagliari, Italy: With five races held on Monday, eight flights have been completed and the five qualifying days of Youth Foiling Gold Cup, Act 3, have drawn to a close.
The fleet was called onto the water shortly after 10 a.m. to take advantage of a favourable window in conditions. The races were held with a light and unstable breeze coming off the land, which shifted and stabilised at around 11 knots from the north east over the course of the morning.
The Dutch team racked up the best performance overall, with their impeccable boat handling and consistent results meaning that they never placed lower than second. With 89.5 points, they remain firmly at the top of the standings and have earned direct access to the ACT3 finals, taking place from 29 to 31 October.
Onboard DutchSail – Janssen de Jong is a very close-knit crew that has been racing together since the beginning of the season. At the helm is Cas van Dongen, while Scipio Houtman, winner of the European 49er under-23 championship, is the sail trimmer, and Ismene Usman and Merle Louwinger alternate in the role of flight controller.
Behind them in second place, on 71.5 points, are the Italians on Young Azzurra. The team flying the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda colours – with Ettore Botticini at the helm, Federico Colaninno as sail trimmer, and Erica Ratti and Francesca Bergamo, alternating as flight controllers – automatically qualifies for the final part of the knockout races, skipping the first two series that the remaining six teams must face.
Team France also consolidated their position in third place, allowing them to skip the first round of the knockout series. The knockout phase will take place from Tuesday until October 28, and will be divided into three series. The top five teams will meet DutchSail – Janssen de Jong in the final, scheduled for October 29-31.
Cas van Dongen from DutchSail said, “The qualification series is over. It’s been an awesome week here in Cagliari. Today we had one of the most difficult days. The wind was very unstable and we had to keep our eyes outside the boat. We got very consistent results with one first place and two seconds. We did very well, approaching every race as a new one.
“As we won the qualification series it means we’ll have a couple of days off while the other teams will sail the knock-out series in the coming days. For sure they’ll make some steps. They are doing a great job, getting better and better. It seems that everyone can win the race.”