In the Conde de Godo Trophy, Audi Azzurra Sailing Team have achieved both a fourth and an eight place which has slowed their pursuit of Quantum who took seventh place today in order to control the Italian boat. Meanwhile Bribon got to work and back in the game.
Audi Azzurra Sailing Team - Conde de Godo Trophy 2011
Today was a decidedly off day for Audi Azzurra Sailing Team in the final leg of the Audi MedCup in Barcelona. A poor start in the first race was followed by a recovery which led to a positive fourth place finish thanks to excellent tactics coupled with perfect manoeuvres.
Ran won followed by Quantum who thereby increased their overall lead, however the situation remained positive and under control. In the second race, however, Azzurra suffered at the hands of a controlling Quantum: after an unremarkable start Azzurra rose to fifth place despite constant controlling tactics by the Americans but then slid back due to a problem with a sheet at the leeward gate.
Azzurra finished last with Quantum, who maintained tight control, in second-to-last place. The chance to close the gap from the leader was lost and Bribon, with today's third and first place, now sits just half a point behind Audi Azzurra Sailing Team.
The Audi Azzurra Sailing Team crew were anything but resigned, as Vasco Vascotto explained: 'We have to keep our calm because we know that Quantum are exploiting any mistakes we make, but if they continue to concentrate only on penalizing us and not on their own victory, I think Bribon could easily take advantage of that. If Azzurra doesn't win I would be happy to see them take the top spot at the end of the season.'
Tactician Francesco Bruni: 'We had two starts that were by no means perfect, the second was a little better than the first but in both we had to come about immediately finding the path closed by Quantum who made us pay for our mistake. Now though it's not just us the Americans will want to bother, there's Bribon too, and we'll see what happens. I want to say to everyone who supports us with such passion that we will fight with all our strength right to the end; that is certain.'
Skipper Guillermo Parada concluded, 'Clearly we did not get the result we were looking for today, but now we are three boats in the running for the final victory. Bribon is racing very well and Quantum is under more pressure than before, there are still three days of racing and we'll see how things are on Saturday evening.'
Audi Azzurra Sailing Team is still in second place, 11.5 points from Quantum Racing while Bribon is right behind just 0.5 points from Azzurra and the Audi MedCup grows ever more exciting. Two more races are scheduled for tomorrow from 1 p.m.
Audi Azzurra website
Audi MedCup website