The sunshine brought out the weekend crowds and some gusty conditions made for tight racing on the third day of the Extreme Sailing Series on downtown Singapore’s Marina Bay. In a series where everyone can be first and everyone can be last, the consistency prize went to double Olympic gold medallist Roman Hagara.
The Austrian parked his 40-foot catamaran Red Bull outside the clubhouse, 24 races under his belt and with a three-point cushion over his nearest rivals, the Danish duo of Jes Gram-Hansen and Rasmus Køstner on SAP, going into the final day. In third place, but with a gap widening to 15 points behind Hagara, is the Omani-based The Wave, Muscat, whose skipper Leigh McMillan is seeking to make amends for being pipped at the post for the 2014 title by the American Morgan Larson, sailing Ernesto Bertarelli’s now absent, Swiss-based Alinghi.
Race officer Phil Lawrence will be hoping to complete a full complement of 32 races, with the last race counting double points. McMillan has a lot of making up to do, but these three are already looking like a first division.
Said one of McMillan’s crew, Peter Greenhalgh: “We need to reset and get back on the front foot as there is still time to win this event and there are many more ahead this season. Patience and perseverance are key in this style of racing.”
Making quiet progress was the still largely Australian crew of GAC Pindar. Having had to sit in the pits repairing a broken bowsprit on day two, Seve Jarvin put in a more than respectable day with two wins and two thirds, but this may only form the basis of a continued upward curve next time in Muscat, Oman.
In Sanya, the French-skippered Chinese team in the Volvo round the world race, Dongfeng, completed a triumphant return to home waters by winning the inshore race. Charles Caudrelier made no mistakes to beat Britain’s double Olympic silver medallist Ian Walker at the helm of Abu Dhabi.
Having won the third leg from Abu Dhabi to Sanya, Caudrelier starts the 5,250-mile leg four to Auckland with a single point lead over Walker with Bouwe Bekking’s Brunel in third place, three points further behind.
In a fleet reduced to six after the Team Vestas Wind ran onto a reef in the Indian Ocean, the Turkish-American Alvimedica is fourth, the Spanish yacht Mapfre, with skipper Iker Martinez standing down for a second leg to train for his Olympic bid in the Nacra catamaran, is fifth, and the all-woman SCA, skippered by Sam Davies, is sixth.Reuse content