The Marseille Trophy opened yesterday with three races, all proving very different to last month's breezy opener in Cascais
As 2008 champions Quantum Racing rekindled their winning ways with back to back wins in Races 2 and 3 to lead the regatta at the end of the first day, the reigning champions came off the water in ninth of ten and 2007 circuit winners in tenth.
Breezes rarely topped ten knots but it was the changes in strength and direction which made life especially testing for afterguards. Taking the positive benefits of the bend generated by the steep, bluff Marseilleveyre mountains was usual key. But there was no simple strategy, there were many traps, zones of light winds which were best avoided.
With Morgan Larson (USA), who won as tactician for the 2008 champions, returned to the afterguard fold for this regatta, Quantum Racing’s starts were strong and their tactical sailing a good blend of pushing when they needed to and managing the risks in the patchy breezes. They were able to hold off Synergy (RUS) by only 3 seconds in a thrilling finish to Race 2.
Winning, ahead of Audi A1 powered by All4One in the third race, sees Terry Hutchinson (USA) and the team end the day locked even on 10 points with the very consistent Matador (ARG) whose 3,3,4 for the day is a welcome tonic after their slightly disappointing Portugal Trophy regatta.
Emirates Team New Zealand unfortunately repeated that off-key start that they made to the season’s first races, tenth in the first contest which was won by Bribon. This time, in the lighter conditions which are not the powerful Kiwi boat’s favourite, they failed to bounce back into the top tier of the fleet during the following two races, but so close are the points in this extremely tight class that they are only four points shy of the top half of the fleet.
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TP52 Series Overall – Day 1
1. Quantum Racing (USA), 8+1+1=10 points
2. Matador (ARG), 3+3+4= 10
3. Audi A1 powered by ALL4ONE (FRA/GER), 2+9+2= 13
4. Cristabella (GBR), 6+4+3= 13
5. Bribón (ESP), 1+8+8= 17
6. Synergy (RUS), 9+2+6= 17
7. TeamOrigin (GBR), 4+7+7= 18
8. Luna Rossa (ITA), 5+5+10= 20
9. Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL), 10+6+5= 21
10. Artemis (SWE), 7+12(RAF)+9= 28
11. Bigamist 7 (POR), 12(DNC)+12(DNC)+12(DNC)= 36
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