Please select your home edition
Edition
InSunSport - NZ

Gaastra 52 World Championship - Rán Racing stay cool to lift title

by 52 series media on 10 Mar 2013
Ran Racing wins 52 Super Series Gaastra World Championships day 4 © Ingrid Abery http://www.ingridabery.com
Niklas Zennström and the Rán Racing team secured the Gaastra 52 World Championship title on the final run of the last race of the series, after a thrilling showdown off Miami’s South Beach up against 52 Super Series champions and former world champions Azzurra.

Although Rán Racing started the three race finale with a lead of four points, and increased that to six points, after they placed second in the first contest of the day with Azzurra fourth, Zennström’s team then had what he later described as a ‘shocker’.

Early in the penultimate race they missed the key windshift and could only manage seventh as the Azzurra team sailed to a relatively comfortable win.

That left the pair tied on points going in to the final race. Head to head, the odds were perhaps stacked in favour of the Azzurra team with slightly more match racing experience.

Sure enough when the start gun went Azzurra had hounded Rán out to the extreme left side of the line, almost into the spectator fleet. But the Swedish owner and his crew kept cool heads and did a great job of damage limitation.

Azzurra retained control of Rán around the course but Zennström’s crew kept pushing and, in sixth and seventh place at the final top mark, the team which has lead the championship for longest were in a position to pounce.

As a small gust hit Azzurra appeared to broach and lose control allowing Rán to slide past only centimetres to windward.

Reports as to what actually happened differ. Rán believe their rivals were trying to luff and force a penalty. Azzurra’s skipper Guillermo Parada later explained that it was a combination of small errors of timing which caused their costly broach.

Rán Racing’s coolness paid off and they held on to cross the line just ahead of Azzurra to clinch the title by one single point.

Owner Doug DeVos steered Quantum Racing to win the tenth and final race of the regatta, in so doing narrowing their points deficit in third place to finish only one point behind Azzurra and two off new world champions Rán Racing.

As was forecast at the beginning of the five day regatta, Miami dealt up a great range of different wind conditions and so Zennström and his team can be considered very worthy champions. They become the third team in the history of the event to win the world title after Quantum Racing. The tall Swedish owner-driver admitted later it was ‘one of the most stressful days of my life’.

'It is fantastic.' He said. ' I am relieved after one of the most stressful days of my life I think. We went into the day with a six points lead but we knew that anything could happen. We started with a very good second place and gained a few more points. Then in the second race it was a shocker. It came down to the last race and whoever would win between. In the pre-start Azzurra had their match racing helmsman on the start and they took advantage of that and they did a bit of a match racing trick on us. We don’t do match racing on our boats. But we managed to stay close and in a position to attack. They tried to luff is and broached out and we could just sail past them. They tried to trick us and force a penalty situation but they broached.'

For tactician Adrian Stead it is his third 52 World title as tactician:
' It was a brilliant team effort from everyone in Rán Racing. We showed what we are made of. We kept fighting and came back from some tough positions. Coming out as world champions is just awesome. I love sailing here in Miami. We are only in early March in the season and we have won our first regatta of the year and it happens to be a world championship. We are ecstatic.'

Azzurra win the US 52 Super Series overall, the results aggregated between January’s Quantum Key West 2013 regatta and these Gaastra 52 World Championships where they finish runners-up.

Gaastra 52 World Championships, Results after 10 races.

1 Rán Racing (Zennström, SWE) 32pts (7,1,1,1,4,2,1,7,6)
2 Azzurra (Roemmers, ITA) 33 pts (1,2,3,5,2,5,3,4,1,7)
3 Quantum Racing (DeVos, USA) 34pts (3,4,2,3,3,4,6,3,5,1)
4 Vesper (Swartz, USA) 39pts (5,5,7,2,6,1,4,1,4,4)
5 Gladiator (Langley, GBR) 43pts (2,6,5,4,1,3,8,6,3,5)
6 Interlodge (Fragomen, USA) 49pts (4,7,4,7,5,8,2,8,2,2)
7 Rio (Moshayedi, USA) 61pts (8,3,8,6,8,7,7,5,6,3)
8 Gaastra-Pro (Blees, NED) 69pts (6,8,6,8,7,6,5,7,8,8)

US 52 Super Series final after Quantum Key West 2013 and Gaastra 52 World Championships
1 Azzurra 57pts
2 Rán Racing 63 pts
3 Quantum Racing 66pts
4 Interlodge 78pts
5 Gladiator 85pts
6 Rio 112 pts

Best Owner driver Niklas Zennström

Quotes:

Niklas Zennström (SWE) owner-driver Rán Racing (SWE): 'It is fantastic. I am relieved after one of the most stressful days of my life I think. We went into the day with a six points lead but we knew that anything could happen. We started with a very good second place and gained a few more points. Then in the second race it was a shocker. It came down to the last race and whoever would win between. In the pre-start Azzurra had their match racing helmsman on the start and they took advantage of that and they did a bit of a match racing trick on us. We don’t do match racing on our boats. But we managed to stay close and in a position to attack. They tried to luff is and broached out and we could just sail past them. They tried to trick us and force a penalty situation but they broached. This is what our objective was for the US leg of the circuit. It is fantastic we have done the job we came here to do and so we are very, very pleased.'

Adrian Stead (GBR) tactician Rán Racing (SWE): 'We probably made it a little hard for ourselves today. That meant it was all square going into the last race and it was who beat who. We probably squandered our lead on the middle race when we missed out on the left shift and we did not really get back into the game. On the start of the last race Azzurra came looking for us and we tried to minimise the damage. We managed to close them down and were on their transom on the gate. They did not manage to put any distance on us on the beat so we were in contention down the run. We had a good set. The guys did an amazing Indian gybe set which put us in a strong position to roll them. They tried to luff and we kept clear and we sailed away. It was proper seat of the pants stuff. It was a brilliant team effort from everyone in Rán Racing. We showed what we are made of. We kept fighting and came back from some tough positions. Coming out as world champions is just awesome. I love sailing here in Miami. We are only in early March in the season and we have won our first regatta of the year and it happens to be a world championship. We are ecstatic.'

Guillermo Parada (ARG) skipper Azzurra (ITA); 'It is sport. We would liked to have won but the final positions are what they are and are fair. Rán had a great week overall and are fair winners. We kept pushing as much as we could and got close. When you are not in your perfect week and you get into the fight for the title that is good. And we won the US 52 Super Series and are leading overall going to Europe. We have some homework to do but we are in good shape. It has not been an ideal week for us but we hung in there but congratulations to Rán, they sailed a great week and it was great fun.

We called for the manoeuvre a little bit late. It was a gybe set on the offset as we were hoisting the kite. We were a little bit late rotating the spinnaker, getting the tack in position and the backstay on and so we had people off the rail. We did have the back stay fully on and the tack of the spinnaker was a little too high and we were hit by a gust and we were not ready and so we broached. We were very close to Rán but they were able to squeeze to windward of us by centimetres. The 52 Super Series is in great health with eight boats here with very tight racing, boats on equal points and everything decided on the last race, you cannot ask for more than that.

Ed Reynolds (USA) project director Quantum Racing (USA): 'It was great to just see how close these great boats are. And to see two great crews like Azzurra and Rán Racing, when everything is on the line and it is a battle all the way around. There is nothing like having your best race when it means the most and so my hat is off to Rán Racing for the job they did. It was amazing.

We are third for the event. We always look at the season and come out of the two Florida events 10 points off first. We are third overall and like where we are at. We would like to be leading but there are some things with the boat we are really excited about and are really looking forwards to the European legs of the 52 Super Series. A lot of it here was us not committing hard enough when we needed to. We thought we were going very well. But we probably took 60 % of the shifts when we needed 80%. And it is more difficult out there than people thought. And if you are going the wrong way more often than not, but when we went the right way we did well. It was great to finish with a win. There is nobody loves sailing more than Doug DeVos and we had hoped to do better for him, but finishing with a win was really good.'
Barz Optics - FloatersInSunSport - NZT Clewring AC72

Related Articles

America's Cup - Arbitration Panel Hearing over Kiwi Qualifier for July
ACEA CEO, Russell Coutts has confirmed that the Arbitration Panel will hold its first Hearing in July. In a yet to be published interview in Sail-World, America’s Cup Events Authority CEO, Russell Coutts has confirmed that the Arbitration Panel will hold its first Hearing in July. This is the first official indication that the three person Arbitration Panel had even been formed, however Sail-World’s sources indicated that it had been empanelled since last January, possibly earlier.
Posted on 27 May
Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 2
Yachting NZ's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is unprecedented Yachting New Zealand's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is without precedent. Subject to Appeal, the Kiwis have signaled that they will reject 30% of the positions gained in the ISAF World Sailing Championships in Santander in 2014.
Posted on 22 May
Gladwell's Line - World Sailing changes tack after IOC windshift
Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick. Every blow well earned over issues such as the pollution at Rio, the Israeli exclusion abomination plus a few more. But now World Sailing is getting it right.
Posted on 21 May
Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 1
Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving its goals Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving goals set in the Olympic Commission report of 2010. Around 64 countries are expected to be represented in Rio de Janeiro in August. That is a slight increase on Qingdao and Weymouth, but more importantly a full regional qualification system is now in place
Posted on 19 May
Taming the beast-a conversation with Stuart Meurer of Parker Hannifin
While AC72 cats were fast, they difficult to control, so Oracle partnered with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way. If you watched videos of the AC72s racing in the 34th America’s Cup (2013), you’re familiar with the mind-boggling speeds that are possible when wingsail-powered catamarans switch from displacement sailing to foiling mode. While foiling is fast, there’s no disguising the platform’s inherent instability. Now, Oracle Team USA has teamed up with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way.
Posted on 18 May
From foiling Moths to Olympic starting lines-a Q&A with Bora Gulari
Bora Gulari’s is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class, along with teammate Louisa Chafee. Bora Gulari (USA) has made a strong name for himself within high-performance sailing circles, with wins at the 2009 and 2013 Moth Worlds. In between, he broke the 30-knort barrier and was the 2009 US SAILING Rolex Yachtsman of the Year. His latest challenge is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class as skipper, along with his teammate Louisa Chafee.
Posted on 12 May
Concern for Zika at Rio Olympics is now deadly serious
Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, or the Rio Olympics. Many others have, and they were apt, but things have changed. So here now we have a situation where one man, Associate Professor Amir Attaran, who does have a more than decent string of letters after his name, is bringing nearly as many facts to bear as references at the article's end
Posted on 12 May
Zhik - The brand born of a notion, not its history
here is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline is officially marketed as Made For Water There is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline has been officially marketed as Made For Water, and this is precisely what the company has done for the last eight years before the succinct and apt strapline came from out of R&D and into mainstream visibility.
Posted on 8 May
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 on 3 May
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