In the third qualifying session of the Monsoon Cup, final event on the 2012 Alpari World Match Racing Tour, it has been a strong day for Yanmar Racing who moved to the top of the leaderboard. They did it with another three wins and just a single loss, to confirm a place in tomorrow’s quarter finals, and challenge for pole position out of qualifying.
Yanmar Racing - 2012 Monsoon Cup
Yanmar Racing’s tactician, Fred Guilmin (FRA) reflected on another solid performance, opening with a win over the rising US star, Taylor Canfield. ‘This was a tough match, Rod Dawson is sailing with Taylor, and Rod sailed with Peter Gilmour for a long while so he knows all his moves! The lead changed four times in two laps, but we had the advantage at the end, and got a very valuable point.’
Guilmin added, ’ The next one was the match of the day though, father against son.’ It was time for the much-anticipated, first-ever Gilmour v Gilmour contest on the Alpari World Match Racing Tour, as Peter took on his son, David. ‘The crucial moment was in the pre-start,’ said Guilmin. ’It was very light winds, and because we had the weaker, left-hand entry to the pre-start we were held in a dial-up for a long while.
‘We had to hoist the spinnaker to try and get back to the start line, and with both boats on starboard we were trapped to windward. But we just got enough speed to accelerate over the top, gybe around David’s bow and get back to the line. There was only a few centimetres in it, but it gave us the lead off the line, and we converted that into the win.’ Chalk one up for experience over youth.
Yanmar Racing’s third race of the day, against the reigning Tour Champion, Ian Williams, was also settled on the start line, as Guilmin described.
2012 Monsoon Cup
‘We burned ourselves in this race, we had a perfect position for a start at the left-hand end, a touch early, but we should have been fine. And then we just had a rush of blood to the head, and went over early. Ian had a penalty and we tried to keep it close but we made another small mistake at the start of the final leg, and he just extended away from us enough to do the penalty and still cross the finish line ahead.’
The final race was against Peter Gilmour’s Western Australian compatriot, Keith Swinton and it turned out to be the most comfortable of the day. Yanmar Racing took control off the start line and extended to win by about ten boat lengths. ‘It was important for the points,’ said Guilmin, ‘we were on six wins going into that race, and Keith was on five, if he had beaten us we would have gone level with him, Williams and Morvan – all on six – with Hansen ahead of us.’ Instead of which, the seventh victory put Yanmar Racing at the top of the leaderboard.
‘It was a tough, long day,’ Guilmin concluded, ‘the wind is very light and there is almost no current, usually the river is running fast with the Monsoon rain, and there is plenty of breeze, but not this year. The conditions are hard to read, even after racing here a lot.’
Yanmar Racing are not scheduled to race again until the last flight, when they will take on Jeremy Koo in flight seventeen. Racing will start with flight fifteen tomorrow morning, and then move onto the quarter finals. Koo has yet to win a race, and a win for Yanmar Racing would give them a good chance of taking pole position in qualifying.
The Monsoon Cup is the eighth and final event on this year’s Alpari World Match Racing Tour and is held in Kuala Terengganu, Malaysia from the 3rd-8th December, 2012. The Yanmar Racing team are currently in fourth overall on the Tour standings, 6.75 points behind third placed Keith Swinton (AUS), with the gap to leaders Ian Williams (GBR) and Bjorn Hansen (SWE) set at 25.75 and 28 points respectively.
Qualifying Round – After Fourteen Flights
Peter Gilmour 7 3 7
Björn Hansen 7 4 7
Ian Williams 6 3 6
Keith Swinton 6 3 6
Pierre-Antoine Morvan 6 4 6
Phil Robertson 5 3 5
Taylor Canfield 5 4 5
Adam Minoprio 5 4 5
David Gilmour 4 5 4
Laurie Jury 3 6 3
Johnie Berntsson 2 9 2
Jeremy Koo 0 8 0
Overall Tour Championship Standings – After seven stages:
Bjorn Hansen (SWE) Mekonomen Sailing Team – 104.25pts
Ian Williams (GBR) GAC Pindar – 102pts
Keith Swinton (AUS) Black Swan Racing – 83pts
Peter Gilmour (AUS) Yanmar Racing – 76.25pts
Pierre-Antoine Morvan (FRA) Vannes Agglo Sailing Team – 71pts
Laurie Jury (NZ) Kiwi Match – 70.25pts
Phil Robertson (NZ) Waka Racing – 70pts
Johnie Berntsson (SWE) Berntsson Sailing Team – 68.25pts
Monsoon Cup website