The Italian boat Alina has won the Mumm 30 world championship in Annapolis
An overjoyed and emotional Maurizio Abba, Alina ITA retained his title of Mumm 30 World Champion and keeps the magnificent Royal Canadian Yacht Club Trophy for another year.
One hundred miles inland from the Atlantic, Annapolis sits almost at the top of the Chesapeake Bay, misleadingly unsheltered. Winds shifted with the blink of an eye and a good choice of course side in one race was not necessarily the best choice in the next.
Day one with three races showed the Italians were as fast out of the traps as the 12 knots would allow. Pier Paolo Cristofori’s Printel Wind, ITA took 1,1,2 with Maurizio Abba’s, Alina ITA 10,2,4 second overall for the day. Fred Sherratt’s Steadfast CAN had a very bad third race posting 2,4,20 after choosing the wrong side of the course which spoiled the end of their day, permitting Fuzzy Logic USA into third place.
Hurricane Isadore had swung back and forth over Florida, fortunately it had reduced to a tropical storm by the time it moved north and approached Annapolis bringing much needed rain, grey skies and winds topping a gusty 28 knots, fortunately less than the 40 plus suggested by the TV weather forecasters.
Day two, race five, rain, chop and 15 plus knots. Philippe Kahn USA on Pegasus attempted to squeeze in a starboard lay-line and barged in at the top mark in the building breeze. A collision ensued between four boats involving Diarmuid Foley’s Mammy!. IRL, Contender USA, and Unicredito ITA. The crash was so severe that Claudio Recchi owner-driver of Unicredito on port tack was sent somersaulting along the deck managing to keep hold of the tiller and continuing to helm flat on his back before gaining his composure. Mammy!, on starboard tack, T-boned Pegasus on port smashing a V shaped hole through the hull, below the sheerline and forward of the mast, taking out Mammy!’s pulpit and stanchions plus shredding the spinnaker. The boats rested temporarily in formation as four bows faced each other in a star configuration. Contender USA, also on port tack, managed to clear the melee first and continued racing but was later disqualified. Philippe Kahn limped off with unknown hull damage, a broken spinnaker pole and broken masthead wand but with speedy overnight repairs was back on course by the next day winning race eight, which lifted his spirits. In the same race Jack Le Fort, Off The Gauge USA, with local Chris Larson doing tactics, broke the forstay and decided to retire and return home as storms lashed his home state of Florida.
On day three in race nine of the series, Steadfast CAN kept out of trouble by staying in front followed closely by Pegasus USA and Bold2. Misjudgements caused four boats to be disqualified including Pegasus and Unicredito. Eventual redress was given to Jim Keesling, Mummy USA (complete with new hull graphics of flowing bandages) as Banca Finat ITA T-boned the starboard aft quarter. Heavy humidity sat over the course as the patchy sun came through and overall standings showed Steadfast equal first with Printel Wind at 53 points but Alina sat uncomfortably close on their heels with 54 points.
Day four offered a picture perfect setting, clear blue skies, low humidity and 25 knots. Contender USA had sustained unknown mast damage the previous day and by hoisting the mainsail for race ten realised they had cracked a spreader and were in danger of pulling down the mast so had to retire.
One point separated the top three boats at the start of the last day. Steadfast CAN however, had a terrible race 10 coming 21st. Printel Wind ITA came seventh and Alina ITA eighth. In the final race Steadfast posted a second, Printel Wind a shakey 14th and Alina sixth which secured them the championship with seven points between her and Printel Wind overall.
Maurizio Abba did not manage line honours in any of the eleven races but by taking between second to, at worst, 13th managed to hold on to title winner with consistency. Not that Pier Paolo Cristofori, Printel Wind was not consistent with two firsts and a second, but a few eighths and ninths did the damage and there were seven points between Alina and Printel Wind overall.
Champagne Mumm were proud to be title sponsors to this prestigious regatta, where only the best compete and celebrations feature long after the event is over. Supporting sponsors Lewmar handed out winch handle pockets to owners and North Sails hosted an extravagant banquet including local blue crabs and oysters.
1st Alina ITA 66 pts
2nd Printel Wind ITA 73 pts
3rd Steadfast CAN 76 pts
4th Illusion USA 83 pts
5th Foreign Affair AUS 88 pts
6th Tramp USA 122 pts
7th Unicredito Italiano ITA 124.60 pts
8th Bold2 USA 145 pts
9th Paydirt USA 147 pts
10th Furry Creatures USA 149 pts