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Worth the wait: Four races today in ORC Sportboat European Championship

by Offshore Racing Congress 28 Aug 23:28 PDT 23-29 August 2021
2021 ORC Sportboat European Championship © Sedat Yilmaz

For two frustrating days, the 27 teams from 4 nations waited in the hot sun for wind to appear on the Sea of Marmara on the Asian side of Istanbul near the host club of the ORC Sportboat European Championship, the Kalamis Yelken Spor Kulubu. For several hours each day a light southerly teased both sailors and race organizers with almost enough wind to sail, but just never steady enough to be confident of good championship racing.

Today, however, was a completely different story, as a strong predicted northerly filled in after Noon to give a lively 15-20+ knots of breeze, challenging all teams with their skills in these conditions. This also allowed race managers to run four windward-leeward races of 4.8 - 5.4 miles in length to complete the minimum requirements for a valid ORC championship regatta, the first ever held in Turkey.

"This is what everyone came for," said Deputy PRO David Barthold, "so it was a pleasure to finally have good wind, good courses, and close racing for everyone. This was a long day, but I think everyone is pleased."

Even though the ORC system rates boats according to their specific measurements, in these strong conditions the more seasoned one-design teams seemed to dominate the top ranks in the results. After three races three one-designs were tied on 9 points each, with the next two boats tied on 11 points each.

Four of these five are popular one-designs - J/70's and Farr 25's - while just one - Cenik Keskin's SPLASH - is a Jim Donovan-designed GP 26 built locally by Wraceboats and steered by Jesper Radich.

All the top-ranked boats are from Class A, while the top-ranked Class B boat is Estonian Ott Kikkas's brand new Matteo Polli-designed Corsa 915 SUGAR, helmed this week by Branko Brcin. SUGAR ended the day's four races in 7th place overall, a distant 21 points behind Sukru Sanus's Farr 25 ONEDESIGN, who is leading the regatta on a scoreline of 3-2-4-1, one point clear of runner-up NIMBUS, a J/70 helmed by Saruhan Cinay.

The next-nearest Class B boat to SUGAR in the standings is Sinem Ergun's SB20 HARMONIX, helmed by Guray Zunbul, who are in 12th place after four races.

The forecast for tomorrow predicts light air returns again to Istanbul, with raceable conditions hoped for in the afternoon. If three more races are scored, competitors will have one discard for the final results.

Complete results are available here.

For more information visit event website, www.orcsportsboateuropeans2021.com.

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