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Regates Royales-Trophee Panerai in Cannes

'Mariette Vainqueur - Régates Royales Trophée Panerai - image Guillaume Plisson'       Click Here to view large photo

Despite long hours of waiting, the wind did not pick up for the last day’s racing at the Régates Royales-Trophée Panerai in Cannes Saturday where not a single race start could be given.

The Classic yachts, headed out to the race area, only to return hours later, whilst the Metre Class and Dragons stayed ashore. The 30th anniversary of the event is marked by the sad loss of the skipper of Safir and will also be remembered for the both the variable weather conditions and the changes in the leader board.

The prize giving for the 30th edition of the Régates Royales de Cannes was held at 18:30 on Saturday evening on the Quai Laubeuf. For some, sailing will continue on Sunday when the feeder race to the Vieux Port de Saint-Tropez starts at 11:30 am.

Aliquid memoriae mandare

The death of Wilfred Tolhurst, the skipper of Safir, on Tuesday following a collision at sea, will remain as a sad loss for all the crews who regularly race at the Régates Royales in Cannes. All paid homage to the British sailor who was passionate about classic yachts and racing. His family have wished for the régates to continue in his memory and the 167 crews have been able to do so, racing three of the five races in very variable weather conditions.

Update on the positions

The racing has been truly spectacular with the traditional respect for the rules of yacht racing being maintained down to the last inch. Each category produced a deserving winner, one that could come down to a bowsprit length. The overall win for Francis van de Velde’s Oriole over Guiseppe Griodanos’ Bona Fide, tied on equal points, came down to two race wins on three contested to win in the gaff cutters.

Just one point difference gave the lead in the Marconi A category to Borja Pella (Galvana) over Henry Graeme (Stormvogel). In the Marconi B, Luciano Brovelli (Swala) takes a narrow margin over Frédéric Laffitte (Sagittarius) and the same can be said for Mathew Barker (The Blue Peter) in the Epoque Marconi B’s, who gains the upper hand over Jacques Louvet’s Agneta and half a point in third, Jean-Philippe’s l’Oiseaux de Feu.

Nicholas Ryan (Shamrock V) sweeped the tables in the Spirit of Tradition Class taking a healthy lead over well ahead Jean-Paul Besnard (Helisara). Claudio Mealli (Amorita) wind the Marconi C Class once again, ahead of Claudio Valtulini (Kipawa) and Charlie Wroe (Mariette) wiped out the competition; four points ahead of the nearest rival, Stéphane Ben Field (Altaïr) and 5 ahead of Jim Thom (Mariquita).

The Metre Classes

Racing in the metre classes was very tight this week where the point’s difference came down to a centimetres. The old America’s Cup Class yachts swaped the lead throughout the very even racing. Christian Tréhard (Kookabura III) looked more comfortable in the light breeze but it was William Borel (Challenge Twelve), who gained the upper hand in the fresher conditions to take the win by just one point.

The 6 Metre Class was well represented - The Swede, Claes Ahlin (Gubbröra) takes the upper hand on what was a pretty irregular performance from the rest of the fleet ; Arthur Keller (Midinette) from Switzerland did put some pressure on only to fall back on the last race.

The Toucan’s and Tofinou 9.50’s from Switzerland

The five Toucan yachts come from Switzerland to race in Cannes enjoyed some close racing, however Yves Gaussen (Incisif) wiped out any hopes his competition might have had by winning all five races.

Racing was extremely close for the seven 9.50 Tofinous’s who produced a tie for the lead. The win finally went to the British sailor, David Hutchinson (Cordelia II) over Hervé Margolis (Grey One) who having won the last race, was proclaimed winner in Cannes.

The Dragon’s

The wind did not make for easy racing for the 79 Dragons racing in Cannes. With five races (one discarded), the overall points lead went to Ulli Libor (Tradiston: 23 points) from Switzerland, by a narrow one point margin over Mikhali Mouratov (Murka 8: 24 points) from Russia.

Paul Hoj-Jensen of Denmark (Danish Blue: 32 points) sailing under rhe British flag takes third and Maxim Semerkhanov (Multima: 35 points) fourth in the increasingly popular class.

Event website - http://www.regatesroyales.com




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6:23 AM Sun 28 Sep 2008 GMT






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