UNO Farr 40 European Circuit third event and the UNO Farr 40 European Championship are organized by the Farr 40 Class Association in collaboration with Marmara Sailing Club.
The penultimate leg of the curcuit concluded today with the welcome arrival of more stable conditions and saw three close-fought windward-leeward races held on the Sea of Marmara off Istanbul’s Ataköy Marina.
Following several days in which variable meteorological conditions and shifty winds made life difficult for both organizers and participants, a hard-earned victory went to Charisma (MON), owned by Nico Poons, just one point ahead of Alberto Rossi’s Enfant Terrible (ITA). Jim Richardson’s Barking Mad (USA), took third. The eight participating crews will have a day off tomorrow while racing in the UNO Farr 40 European Championship - also valid as the fourth leg of the European Circuit – will take place from Thursday 13th through Sunday 16th October.
Race two of the series, a six-leg windward-leeward course of approximately 6.6 nautical miles, got underway on schedule this morning in 12 knots of north north-westerly breeze. Enfant Terrible dominated from the off, closely followed by Alessandro Barnaba’s Fiamma (ITA) who would later lose ground rapidly, leaving Barking Mad and Charisma to take second and third place respectively.
In race three, once again 6.6 nautical miles, Charisma led at first downwind mark ahead of local boys Asterisk UNO (TUR), owned by Hasip Gencer, and Struntje Light (GER), owned by Wolfgang Schaefer. By the second downwind mark Struntje had moved up to first ahead of the Turkish team with Charisma back in third. Fortunes had been reversed once again by the finish line however, and Charisma fought back to take victory ahead of Schaefer’s Struntje Light and an Enfant Terrible that had steadily gained ground following a less than brilliant start.
Heading into race four it was all to play for as just two points separated Charisma at the top of the classification from Enfant Terrible. Meanwhile another heated battle was brewing for third place between Transfusion (AUS) and Struntje Light who found themselves on equal points with the Australians ahead on countback thanks to their win in race one. Both were ousted however by a resounding win from Barking Mad which allowed the Americans to claim the final place on this evening’s podium.
Nico Poons, owner of Charisma was naturally happy with today’s result: 'We are very pleased, we didn’t expect this. We had a race yesterday where we came second but that was in very strange conditions with very big wind shifts and today it was more straightforward. It was still shifty but also thanks to our tactician John Cutler we won this event and of course we hope we have as much success in the Europeans.'
Francesco Bruni, tactician on Enfant Terrible was less content: 'We’re a little disappointed because we lost by just one point, which is really very little and we had several chances to make up that point but we have to be satisfied with what was nevertheless a good performance. Charisma had a good regatta, especially today, we also had a very good day today. It’s a bit of a surprise that Charisma and Enfant Terrible were able to beat two favourites: Barking Mad and Transfusion, both Class World Champions. It is definitely a positive result that bodes well for the European Championship.'
Jim Richardson, owner of Barking Mad pleased with the day’s racing: 'We had a pretty good day today, it was pretty tricky out there, there were a lot of shifts. We got a second in the first race and we came first in the last race so it is always nice to finish on a high note. It was tricky today but we can sail in heavy and we can sail in light air, we are used to it all; we’ve been doing it long enough. It was nice out there today, good conditions with flat water and 16 to 20 knots so it was a pretty nice day of sailing.'
Richardson was cautious, however about speculation on the European Championship: 'There are a lot of good teams here and even people who didn’t do particularly well in this regatta may turn around and have a blinder in the next one. It’s full on and it’s anyone’s game.'
Following a prize giving ceremony at Ataköy Marina this afternoon, participating owners will be treated to a cruise along the Bosphorous followed by a cocktail party and dinner courtesy of Farr 40 Class President Martin Hill and V. Ergin Imre, sponsor of Provezza 8.
Racing in the UNO Farr 40 European Championship will take place from Thursday 13th through Sunday 16th October with the first signal scheduled for 12 midday each day. The forecast is for light breezes on Thursday before stronger northerly winds move in from Friday onwards. Farr 40 Class Association website Farr 40 European Fleet website Farr 40 European Championship website