The starting guns have started sounding, and the SLR shutters have been firing furiously in Naples, Italy for the final event in the 2012/2013 America’s Cup World Series (ACWS). According to the latest reports, Sir Ben Ainslie’s 'BAR Team' is sitting in the pole position after posting a third and a first in day one’s racing. Not surprisingly, Emirates Team New Zealand (ETNZ) is in second place, followed by 'Luna Rossa Piranha', skippered by Chris Draper. Oracle Team USA-skippered in this event by Olympic Gold medalist Tom Slingsby-is currently sitting in fourth place after posting a second and a sixth.
'It was one of those days when you want to survive because it would have been easy to pick up some bad results,' said Ainslie. 'The wind was so shifty today coming over the headland. That was the biggest challenge.'
'Today could have been better, could have been worse,' said Slingsby. 'We had a good first race, got off to a nice start and had a good lead. We ended up finishing second. Race 2, we had a tough start. We were early to the line and were too close to build speed. So we had a bad start and from there were always playing catch-up. We managed to get three boats, and every point counts.'
Get the full multimedia ACWS report, including some great photo galleries and veteran journalist Bob Fisher’s always-insightful AC commentary, inside this issue, and stay tuned to the website for more news from this event, as it unfurls.
And in offshore sailing news, skipper Alain Thébault and his 'Le Hydroptere' teammates Jean Le Cam and Yves Parlier have announced their intention of once again trying to break the Los Angles to Honolulu passage record aboard their foiling trimaran sometime this spring or early summer.
'In June the position of the Pacific anticyclone is ideal because it provides the most direct route to Hawaii,' said Parlier. 'The thermal wind is active in this season and we will quickly leave the California coast. Then we will surf the long Pacific swell downwind and we will probably have to make a gybe close [to[ the Hawaiian Islands.' Get the full story, including a look at the team’s longer-term ambitions, inside.
And on the East Coast, Charleston Race Week (April 18-21) has begun, featuring great racing in One Design and handicap classes. The still-burgeoning J/70 class has an impressive 56 boats competing for top honors in the Fleet and Corinthian classes. In all, 295 boats are expected to turn out for this event, which is rapidly becoming a spring classic. The weather looks sporadic for the weekend, with a forecasted mix of everything from possible thunder and lightning to bluebird skies, but hopefully this won’t hamper racing. More, as it becomes known.
Also inside, get the latest ISAF Match Race Rankings, check out the list of U.S. sailors who will be competing in the upcoming ISAF Sailing World Cup in Hyeres, France (April 20-27), and don’t miss the preview of next month’s 2013 Rolex Capri Sailing Week Volcano Race (May 16-24).
May the four winds blow you safely home,
by David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor - 12:19 AM Fri 19 Apr 2013 GMT
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