Extreme Sailing Series Act 7 - SAP Extreme Sailing holds off onslaught
by Sarah Branson on 7 Oct 2013
Extreme Sailing Series™ 2013, Act 7, held in Nice, has delivered the ultimate challenge in Stadium Racing for the eight international teams. After 29 races the SAP Extreme Sailing Team did well to hold off the onslaught from the Austrian Red Bull Sailing Team, retaining fourth on the leader board, but ended up relinquishing a podium spot. More than ever the SAP Extreme Sailing Team will look to Brazil to keep pushing and topple their rival from the third overall spot. It would be fair to say that Nice has thrown everything at the competitors in this penultimate Act. The SAP Extreme Sailing Team co-skipper Jes Gram-Hansen said at the start of the racing that the weather was going to be a key component here and he was absolutely right!
Lloyd - Extreme Sailing Series™ 2013 - Act 7 © Lloyd Images
The battle mid-fleet was equally as tense between SAP Extreme Sailing Team and Red Bull Sailing Team, as in each previous act. The SAP Extreme Sailing Team took a while to find their feet in the challenging Nice stadium, but saved their best to last managing a second in the final race of the day, wrapping up the Act in sixth place.
Not even the complicated sea state, alternating breeze nor boat damage throughout the Act could prevent this tight Danish team from fighting to the finish, which they did. Their strength and determination is a force to be reckoned with, something they are clearly respected for amongst the 8-boat fleet.
'This is a strong fleet sailed to a very high standard. It was a very ‘start’ orientated day and getting through the traffic was tricky. We were squeezed because of the course restrictions which is something we will work on for Brazil.' Commented trimmer Peter Cumming.
Nicolai Sehested reflected on the final race day, 'Today was very frustrating on the water, we had a hard time getting off the start line which impacted our positioning. It felt like we gave away points but now we have to fight on and get ready for Brazil. Going into the next Act we should be in the position of determining our own destiny and top performance speaking for itself which we know we are capable of and proven it in the past. But now fate will play its part now and a podium placement will equally depend on other teams performance and luck, with an uncertain outcome. However I do feel like our comeback is on the cards.'