Gazprom Swan 60 World Championship - Bronenosec claims the crown
by Jessica Francis on 10 Aug 2014
This year’s edition of the Gazprom Swan 60 World Championship saw Vladimir Liubomirov’s Bronenosec (RUS) take the title for the second time. Sailing with a mix of Russian and Italian crew members the victory was particularly sweet having sailed an exemplary series.
Gazprom Swan 60 World Champions Bronenosec as they cross the finish line Carlo Borlenghi © http://www.carloborlenghi.com
Vladimir Liubomirov was quick to express his delight commenting: 'I am happy we won; as we got a little bit more wind today it was a lot of fun in the best conditions possible with a great crew alongside me. It is not my first time in Palma and every time I race here I really enjoy it. Palma has fantastic conditions for sailing, probably some of the best in the world, and the Real Club Nautico Palma and our Race Officer organised a superb event.'
Tommaso Chieffi, tactician onboard Bronenosec added: 'We wanted to race today and luckily for us it went well with another bullet. It was an interesting race too because at the start we were behind because of the waves and eventually at the first cross we were in third place but we managed to pass the Gazprom Youth Sailing Challenge team on the first beat and then the deciding factor was the bottom gate. Marc Lagesse, my navigator, spotted a right shift and called for us to go round the left turning mark at the gate and from there we led.
'We have been fighting for every point, we have been very consistent and everything went well from boat speed to tactics to crew handling. The boat performed well but it wasn’t just boat speed it was a combination of everything. We started very well on a high note and from then on we didn’t really feel the pressure of the others catching us. It was a good week.'
The final day of racing at the Copa del Rey Mapfre saw the postponement flag for the first time for all fleets as the Race Committee waited for the sea breeze. Course area Bravo, where the Swan 60s were scheduled to race, moved slightly to meet the sea breeze earlier as it began to fill across the Bahia de Palma.
Race ten of the series got underway in 10 knots from 145°. The Chinese team onboard Windward found the conditions to their liking and led for the majority of the race, which delighted their owner driver, Mr Fan, who commented: 'We have had a fantastic time at the Copa Del Rey Mapfre, everything has been excellent, the yacht club, the weather, the location, the entertainment and the competitors. We are extremely happy with a third overall in a tough fleet!'
Ultimately Bronenosec used their crew handling skills and boat speed, honed over the last three seasons of racing, to take the lead and with it the World Championship as they crossed the finishing line. Windward (CHN) took second place with Spirit of Europe in third place for race ten.
Spirit of Europe finished second overall in the World Championship, Boat Captain Tim Kröger commented, 'We have really enjoyed the week. As we got more familiar with the Swan 60 our boat speed and boat handling improved which led to a great run of results at the end of the regatta which put us in second place on the podium. The racing has been incredibly tight and we are thrilled with our final result.'
Bronenosec (RUS): 1 – 4 – 3 – 1 – 1 – 1 – 2 – 3 – 2 – 1 – Total 15
Spirit of Europe (BVI): 4 – 6 – 6 – 3 – 2 – 6 – 1 – 1 – 1 – 3 – Total 27
Windward (CHN): DSQ – 3 – 4 – 6 – 3 – 2 – 5 – 2 – 3 – 2 – Total 34
Petite Flamme (RUS): 3 – 7 – 1 – 3 – 4 – 5 – 3 – 4 – 6 – 6 – Total 30
Gazprom Youth Sailing Challenge, Tsaar Peter (RUS): 2 – 1 – 5 – 7 – 6 – 3 – 6 – 5 – 7 – 5 – Total 40
German Offshore Challenger, SGM (GER): 6 – 2 – 2 – 4 – 7 – 4 – 7 – DNF – 4 – DNF – Total 44
Vertical Smile (DEN): 5 – 5 – 7 – 5 – 5 – 7 – 4 – 6 – 5 – 4 – Total Gazprom Swan 60 Class website