The first day of racing went ahead today in Marseille. The sailing conditions faced by the teams were very difficult in spite of the everpresent sunshine, 25 knots and heavy seas. 'We reached the limits in terms of possible weather.'
In these conditions, where luck doesn't really come into it, the standing order was respected, so it wil not come as a surprise that the three top seeds (Richard, Cian and Col) won all their races easily. The toughest match of the day was a Franco-French duel between Presti and Iehl – which the former ended up winning. At the close of the day the sailors and organisors were all clearly satisfied.
Paolo Cian, ITA, World No 3 said, 'We are pleased with today's results. The MIMR marks our return to competition after a long winter break. Our performance is motivating and promising for the rest of the regatta and the world championship. We are always happy to come back to Marseille; this is our third time at the MIMR. The level is constantly rising and we were overjoyed to be invited to this sixth edition. The sailing conditions are tip-top and the organisation – both off-shore and on-shore – is faultless. Finally, I would like to congratulate the French sailing federation which has put a lot into Match Racing. 5 French sailors in the top 15 in the World – and 4 of them are in Marseille ...'
Torvar Mirsky, AUS, World No 11 stated 'This is our first time ever in Marseille and in the MIMR. In the training sessions we got to know the sea. A lot of waves, which is unusual for match-racing in Europe. But we like it – it's a lot of fun to sail in these conditions. With these windy conditions, sailing is very physical and we like it! Our objective in the MIMR is to sail as well as possible: like at Pornichet we can beat everyone here, but the competition is really tough, the level of the event is really high...'
Programme for tomorrow is first matches at 10am and the weather forecast is that winds should drop slightly and not go above 20 knts. The day's results
7 flights started today.
Skipper Pts / Matchs Nationality World Ranking on 31.01.08
Mathieu Richard 4/4 FRA 1
Paolo Cian 5/5 ITA 3
Sébastien Col 4/4 FRA 4
Evgeny Neugodnikov 3/5 RUS 7
Damien Iehl 1/2 FRA 8
Torvar Mirsky 1/2 AUS 11
Philippe Presti 2/2 FRA 14
Andrei Arbuzov 0/2 RUS 15
Mads Ebler 4/7 DEN 16
Jure Orel 0/7 SLO 23
Bertrand Pace 2/7 FRA 302
Sébastien Destremau 1/7 AUS 629
Marseille International Match Racing: 11 - 15 March 2008 – www.mimr.fr