The Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship, currently being held in Newport, RI, saw some lighter breezes and stronger currents for day two of racing, which was held on Narragansett Bay, north of the Pell Bridge. The fleet of 11 teams sailed races four and five of the series, and each of those yielded a new winner, just as yesterday's three races had done.
The day started out with nine knots of breeze, and the fleet was taken by surprise in race four when Struntje light, skippered by Germany's Wolfgang Schaefer, came from behind on the last downwind leg to finish first. 'We had an unlucky start, so we had to let the fleet pass us, but fortunately we had a good recovery,' said Schaefer, who followed up his performance with a second in Race five, resulting in his team taking the overall lead and the Daily Winner's Trophy.
Struntje light skippered by Wolfgang Schaefer - Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship 2012 - Daniel Forster
Schaefer added that his team, which includes his wife Angela as navigator, was able to climb in the standings due to smart tactical choices both upwind and downwind. 'A strong crew becomes stronger when they are in a bad position but are able to recover; you learn from those mistakes and get better,' said Schaefer. 'Racing in this class is really challenging, because all of the guys are good.'
On Struntje light's tail in race four was Barking Mad, skippered by Jim Richardson (Newport, R.I.), which held the top position until the final leg of the race. 'We got out to the right-hand side of the course, picked up a little pressure along with a right-hand shift and got around the top mark in first,' said Richardson. 'We did pretty well on the run, and by the second top mark we were pretty well ahead, but when we came around the top mark we gybed, and next thing we knew the breeze had filled in from behind and the fleet had compressed.' That was when Struntje light passed Barking Mad, leaving Richardson with a second place but nevertheless moving the Barking Mad team up from sixth overall yesterday to third today.
Enfant Terrible skippered by Alberto Rossi - Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship 2012 - Daniel Forster
By the start of race five, the breeze had lightened to about six knots, and when the fleet rounded the first upwind mark, Enfant Terrible, skippered by Alberto Rossi, had a decent lead, which the team held onto until crossing the finish line. 'In the second race of the day we didn't make any mistakes, and the results confirm it,' said Rossi whose victory keeps him in a comfortable second-place overall.
Rossi added that the most difficult part of today's racing was navigating the strong currents coming off the land and anticipating the wind direction, which jumped around a little throughout the day. 'We were ready and hoped for a third race, but unfortunately the sea breeze didn't set in.'
Tonight, during the Rolex crew party, sailors enjoyed the sunset and socializing from the rolling back lawn of the New York Yacht Club's Harbour Court.
Results: Struntje light, Wolfgang Schaefer, Germany, 2-4-8-1-2 (17) Enfant Terrible, Alberto Rossi, Anacona, Italy, 4-6-2-6-1 (19) Barking Mad, James Richardson, Boston, Mass., 3-3-10-2-3 (21) Charisma, Nico Poons, Monaco, 5-2-4-9-6 (26) Transfusion, Guido Belgiorno-Nettis, Sydney, Australia, 9-10-1-3-5 (28) Groovederci, John Demourkas, Santa Barbara, Calif., 6-5-3-7-7(28) Provezza 8, Ergin Imre/Onur Erardag, Istanbul, Turkey, 10-1-7-8-4 (30) Plenty, Alexander Roepers, New York, N.Y., 7-7-5-4-10 (33) Nightshift, Kevin McNeil, Annapolis, Md., 1-8-6-10-9 (34) Asterisk Uno, Hasip Gencer, Istanbul, Turkey, 8-9-9-5-8 (39) Yellow Jacket, Bulman Scholz Syndicate, Annapolis, Md., 11-11-11-11-11 (55)
Rolex Watch USA’s Colette Bennett presented the Daily Winner’s Trophy to Struntje light’s skipper Wolfgang Schaefer and his wife and navigator Angela Schaefer. - Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship 2012 - Daniel Forster