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Copa del Rey Mapfre - Azzurra vs Quantum in grueling match race

by Azzurra Sailing Team on 7 Aug 2014
Azzurra - 33rd Copa del Rey Mapfre Martinez Studio/52 Super Series
Azzurra chips away one point from Quantum, following a grueling match race that lasted nearly four hours at the Copa del Rey Mapfre. The coastal race was won by Ran that climbed in the overall scoretable while Phoenix and Gladiator, second and third respectively today, shorten their gap from Azzurra.

The nearly 25-mile long coastal race of the 52 Super Series third stage offered the fleet a wide array of tactical options but for Azzurra it was through after the first mark rounding when a match race with Quantum began. The two boats fought four nearly hours, exchanging positions, but the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda boat stayed nearly always in front and in control. That benefited the rest of the fleet, which left the two duelists in their match race and concentrated on finding the most-favored spots on the course, under a moderate southerly breeze that blew at about 11 knots and topped at 13 knots.

Azzurra got off the start in control on the right-hand side, only to find itself in front of a wind hole, opting to go and cover Quantum. The coastal race was won by Ran, followed by Phoenix and Gladiator that managed to shorten the distance in the overall standings to, respectively, one and two points short of Azzurra. The Italian boat is tied on points with Ran, but the tie is broken in favor of the Swedes that have two race victories while Azzurra has only one.

The weather forecast for tomorrow, Thursday, August 7th, calls for stronger breeze and two windward/leeward races are in program, with the first warning signal scheduled at 1:15pm, local time. Like always, racing will be streamed live with English commentary here.

Guillermo Parada, skipper: 'It was a day with some positive points and others less so. We fought a long match race with Quantum, we are certainly tired but we chipped a point away from them in the overall leaderboard. However, that came with a price as we let the rest of the fleet sail away and finished fifth. The balance of the day is therefore neutral. We still have a lot of races ahead of us before the conclusion of the Copa del Rey and we will see the result at the end.'

Vasco Vascotto, tactician: 'The result of the race might not seem good, and indeed a fifth place isn't a good one, but we were victorious in the match race with our direct opponents, Quantum. It was important to control them even at the expense of losing positions to the rest of the fleet. It's been two races that we finished ahead of them and everything is still possible both for us and the other competitors. Today we understood a lot of things that will improve our performance, we are upbeat, and if we do things the right way, we can make it.'

Standings Barclays 52 Super Series - Copa del Rey Mapfre

Overall after five races

1 Quantum Racing, USA, (Doug De Vos USA) (2,1,2,2,6) 13 p.
2 Rán Racing, SWE, (Niklas Zennström SWE) (1,7,6,3,1) 18 p.?
3 Azzurra, ITA, (Alberto Roemmers ARG) (3,5,4,1,5) 18 p.?
4 Gladiator, GBR, (Tony Langley GBR) (DNF/8,2,1,5,3) 19 p.?
5 Phoenix, BRA, (Eduardo de Souza Ramos BRA) (6,3,3,6,2) 20 p.?
6 Paprec, FRA, (Jean Luc Petithugenin FRA) (4,6,5,4,4) 23 p.?
7 Provezza 7, TUR, (Ergin Imre TUR) (5,4,DNF/8,DNS/8,7) 32p.
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