Please select your home edition
Edition
Bakewell-White Yacht Design

Argo Group Gold Cup - Game of snakes and ladders

by Alpari World Match Racing Tour on 13 Oct 2013
Umpires at the Argo Group Gold Cup, Bermuda, part of the Alpari World Match Racing Tour. ©onEdition
For the Semi Final round of the Argo Group Gold Cup, the penultimate round of the Alpari World Match Racing Tour, today English conditions prevailed on Hamilton Harbour as a trough passed over Bermuda bringing with it ultra-light winds and drizzly rain.

Matters were made no easier for the Race Committee when in the middle of proceedings, the wind turned inside out and there was a 180° wind shift. As a result only the first flight of Semi Finals racing was sailed.

Racing got underway with the races to determine fifth to eight place. These culminated with Bjorn Hansen’s eWork Sailing Team coming out on top after beating Keith Swinton’s Black Swan Racing and Ian Williams’ GAC Pindar teams.

'We were happy with today for sure,' said Hansen. 'It was extremely tricky out there, but we had a little bit of luck and we managed to make the best of the situation.'

The conditions resulted in a game of snakes and ladders across all the matches. In his one against Swinton, Hansen was ahead by four to five boat lengths, but conditions were so light on the right that the Australians were able to come back into them.

'Then we got a penalty just before the top mark,' recounted Hansen. 'We sailed past the top mark and tacked, and he tacked on the inside and wanted mark room, which he didn’t have and he had a penalty there.' This left both boats with penalties and Hansen with a red flag. 'He was very focussed on shouting at the umpires, so we could get up and increase the separation and then got down behind him to take our penalty. Now we were behind and he had a penalty.'

While the Swedes went to get the point, Swinton felt that Hansen hadn’t taken his red flag as ‘immediately’ as he should have, but admitted: 'We made a mistake and we paid for it.'

Swinton went on to dispatch Phil Robertson in the inter-Antipodean dust-up to decide seventh and eighth places, where his Aussie team came out on top. 'We managed to keep good speed in the boat in the pre-start and he went back to the line a bit early and we had some speed and that was that,' said Swinton of how that panned out.

Meanwhile Hansen went on to beat Ian Williams in the match to establish the fifth and sixth placed finishers.

Williams was still bemoaning his team’s Quarter Final performance yesterday, where, having come out on top in Qualifying and picking Taylor Canfield as his opponent, he then lost to the US Virgin Islander, 1-3.


'It was all about yesterday for us,' the GAC Pindar skipper admitted. 'We needed to get third or better here to count this result, so once we weren’t in the Semi Finals we were kind of done. In hindsight there were some key moments we didn’t quite get right. In both those last two races yesterday we just couldn’t get the boat quite locked in.'

After the massive wind shift and a delay, the Semi-Finals got underway. Ben Ainslie’s team got the better of Adam Minoprio’s Team Alpari FX. 'It was very frustrating,' recounted Minoprio. 'The wind was light and shifty and as soon as the gun went it got even lighter and shiftier to the point where it was almost a bit of a drift-off.' Ainslie got the right out of the start and proceeded to extend away from there, with the Kiwi team having no chance to get back into the match.


The first Semi Final race between Francesco Bruni’s Luna Rossa team and Taylor Canfield USone was a nail biter with the Italian team just pipping the US Virgin Islander to the post.

'Normally light wind races are boring, but today was anything but boring!' said Bruni. 'We were ahead and they passed us and then we were ahead to head and then we got a penalty. But we picked up a couple of good shifts down the final run and we were head to head again and in the end I think we won by maybe 20cm. We were very excited when we crossed the line!'

Bruni felt that the Race Committee had made the right decision to stop racing after just one Semi-Final today. 'To decide the semi-finals in good conditions tomorrow is for sure the right call.'

With the forecast for the breeze to fill in to 10-12 knots from the northeast, the plan for tomorrow is to complete the Semi-Finals races before going into the Finals.

Meanwhile the Alpari World Match Racing Tour card holders are contemplating what effect the Argo Group Gold Cup results will mean for the leaderboard going into the final event of the 2013 circuit, December’s Monsoon Cup.

With Ian Williams being knocked out in the Quarter Finals, Taylor Canfield looks set to become the new leader of the 2013 Alpari World Match Racing Tour.

'From here it all really hinges on how Taylor does here,' confides Ian Williams. 'If he wins here he’ll have a really big lead going into Malaysia, but if he comes fourth and he’ll have a small lead leaving Bjorn [Hansen], Adam [Minoprio] and us reasonably close overall.'

Semi Final Results (first to three) after one race

Ben Ainslie (GBR) beat Adam Minoprio 1-0
Francesco Bruni (ITA) beat Taylor Canfield (ISV) 1-0

Fifth to Eighth Place Final Results

5th - Bjorn Hansen (SWE)
6th - Ian Williams (GBR)
7th - Keith Swinton (AUS)
8th - Phil Robertson (AUS)

Related Articles

Shape of next Volvo Ocean Race revealed at Southern Spars - Part 1
Southern Spars has been confirmed as the supplier of spars for the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race. In mid-April, Race Director, Jack Lloyd and Stopover Manager Richard Mason outlined the changes expected for the 40,000nm Race during a tour of Southern Spars 10,000sq metre specialist spar construction facility. A total of up to seven boats is expected to enter, but time is running out for the construction of any new boats.
Posted today at 5:56 am
Sailing in the Olympics beyond 2016 - A double Olympic medalist's view
Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. Gold and Bronze medalist and multiple world boardsailing/windsurfer champion, Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. A key driver is the signalled intention by the International Olympic Committee to select a basket of events that will be contested.
Posted on 29 Apr
From Olympic flag to Olympic Gold and maybe another
The Sydney Olympics was a Sailing double 470 Gold event for Australia. Having won the 420 World Championship in 2000, the feeder class to the 470, while still at school in Australia young Matt Belcher was given the honour of carrying the Olympic flag during the closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
Posted on 28 Apr
Pantaenius – Smooth sailing is more than a favourable weather forecast
Pantaenius get ready to launch into their fourth year operating in Australia As Pantaenius get ready to launch into their fourth year operating in Australia, we get to see why they continue to grow their happy crew of customers. Sitting down with Pantaenius Australia’s MD, Jamie MacPhail, you immediately get a sense that the smooth sailing is a direct result of both their unique product and the marketplace’s willingness to embrace the better mousetrap
Posted on 27 Apr
100 days to Rio, are there potholes and bumps ahead?
The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres. The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres, at some World championship events and Weymouth World Cup but for most crews.
Posted on 26 Apr
Is George Lucas a sailor?
He’s very famous for a lot of things, and justifiably so. One of them is Industrial Light and Magic He’s very famous for a lot of things, and justifiably so. One of them is Industrial Light and Magic, which has been instrumental in the making of many of the special effects that have made the digital world so impressive. Gone are the smears of Vaseline along the bottom edge of the clear filter to hide the trolley that was actually transporting Luke Skywalker’s Speeder, for instance.
Posted on 25 Apr
America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 23 Apr
Thou doth protest too much, me thinks
And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen about now. At any rate, it is simply an adaptation of Lady Gertrude’s original line. We merely seek to use it as a way to demonstrate that when there is a lot of brouhaha going on, the smoke screen ultimately ends up as a lovely, colourful flag as to the real intent behind it.
Posted on 18 Apr
Children of the Internet, Rio and Hong Kong
I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. The kind of conversations I have with her run along these lines.... In the olden days we did not have television until I left school and they had a thing called print magazines, that reported events between two weeks and four months after they happened. And her sceptical response... Hoh! Daddy, Hoh!
Posted on 14 Apr
Can World Sailing learn from dear old Oz?
Why just lay the drop sheets out and tape up the edges of the windows for a splash of paint Some time ago now, Sail-World proposed that ISAF had a really good opportunity at hand when it morphed into World Sailing (WS). Why just lay the drop sheets out and tape up the edges of the windows for a splash of paint, when you could bring out the jackhammers and do a proper reno??? A call was issued for 200,000 sets of goggles and earmuffs to be supplied and for the real work to be commenced.
Posted on 11 Apr
Burk - Marine OutletLancer Lasts LongerSafety at Sea - Baltic - 2