Gunnar Larsen and Xander Pols won the last race of the Aruba Heineken Catamaran Regatta, enough to beat the British duo Sunnucks and Self

The Dutch Formula 18 team Gunnar Larsen and Xander Pols won the 13th Aruba Heineken Catamaran Regatta which concluded on Friday. They beat the British Tornado sailors Sunnucks/Self in the last race with four minutes on rating. After the light conditions in the last couple of days, the wind was back and therefore the smiles on the faces of the competitors. The promised seabreeze was there in the morning and the race committee set an Olympic-type course. Although the Tornados dominated the race, Gunnar Larsen and Xander Pols sailing their Nacra Formule 18 finished one minute ahead so the victory was theirs. Larsen commented: “It was hard work to beat the Tornados, but fortunately we had more wind during the last race.”

For Xander Pols it is the second time in row that he has won the event. Last year, he was helming a Tornado to the first position overall. Pols said: “In 2002 we had a tough competition as well, but it was different. We had lots of troubles with the equipment and that was nerve breaking. This year, we had to deal with very good sailors. William is a fantastic competitor, so we are happy that we finally beat him.”

Richard Allen and Stuart Gummer took third place. Allen said: “This was my seventh time racing in Aruba, but I still did not win the event. Last year, we were second and this year third. So, we are going backwards instead of forwards, therefore we need to come back. We have to win it one year.” It is the first time that first and second place have finished the regatta with the same amount of points. Larsen and Pols were the winners, because they had won more races. Sunnucks commented: “We sailed as fast as we could. They were just to close to us. Anyway, it was a good race and competition.”

After the finish, all competitors began to pack the Hapag Lloyd containers for the transport to Europe, where they will be unloaded in the middle of the winter.

Overall Results (after 8 races and 2 discards)

1. Formule 18 / NED – Larsen and Pols, 10 points

2. Tornado / GBR – Sunnucks and Self, 10 points

3. Tornado / GBR – Allen and Gummer, 21 points

4. Formule 18 / NED – Graat and Koene, 30 points

5. Formule 20 / NED – Deutekom and De Vries, 33 points