Sailing news this week is being driven by the fabled 605-mile Fastnet Race, which is currently playing out in the United Kingdom. The maxi trimaran 'Spindrift 2' (ex 'Banque Populaire V'), co-skippered by Dona Bertarelli and Yann Guichard, took line honors in the multihull division following a close tactical battle (read: tight-quarters match racing) with 'Banque Populaire VII', the other maxi-trimaran that was competing in this classic bluewater challenge. 'Spindrift 2’s' time around the track was 38 hours 53 minutes and 58 seconds, which is certainly not sluggish given the conditions and her recent transition to her current livery.
Maxi Spindrift 2 (trimaran) at the start of the Rolex Fastnet 2013.
'The decisive moment of the race was here at the finish,' said Guichard about the team’s hard-fought battle. 'We were in close contact throughout the race with 'Banque Populaire VII'. Everything, as usual, played out in the last two miles, where we were very anxious because of the light conditions. This race is a sprint.'
As for the team’s recent matriculation to the world of massive multihulls, Guichard seemed more than pleased with the team’s level of preparation, as well as with their results. 'We managed two weeks of solid training since the launch of the boat [earlier this year],' reported Guichard. 'Everything went really well onboard, everyone remained focused on their objectives.'
As for the rest of the fleet, the latest reports are describing light conditions that are translating to sticky elapsed-passage times. As of this writing, the vast majority of the fleet was still at sea, trying their best to find pressure in an otherwise glassy world. Stay tuned to the website for more from the Fastnet Race, as it becomes known.
Meanwhile, in America’s Cup circles, plenty of questions linger regarding the recent revelations that three of Oracle Team USA’s AC45’s were illegally modified with an additional five pounds of weight in their dolphin strikers. Louis Vuitton Cup (LVC) racing is on hold until Saturday (August 17), when Luna Rossa Challenge will meat Emirates Team New Zealand for the first race of the LVC Finals. Get the full scoop, inside this issue.
And in match-racing news, USVI native Taylor Canfield and his 'USone' teammates bounced back to win top honors (and a hefty $25,000 purse) at the Chicago Match Cup, which serves as Stage Four of the Alpari World Match Racing Tour. While Canfield enjoyed home-water advantages, as well as intimate knowledge of the Chicago Match Race Center’s fleet of Tom 28 keelboats, he still had to fend off a more-than-serious threat from Keith Swinton and his Australian-flagged 'Black Swan Racing' to retain his third straight title at this prestigious event.
Also inside, get the latest news from the ongoing U.S. Youth Sailing Championship, the recently concluded Verve Cup Offshore Regatta and the 2013 World Yacht Racing Forum (December 10-11). And finally, don’t miss ace photographer Carlo Borlenghi’s great image gallery of Luna Rossa’s San Francisco base, where the team is preparing for the first race of the LVC Finals.
May the four winds blow you safely home,