Dubai's Team Aqua leads the show at the RC 44 Slam Cup in Italy 7/9/07

The first day of RC 44 Slam Cup took place yesterday in Santa Margherita Ligure, Italy. Racing commenced with four fleet trials in 15-18 knots of breeze.

The protagonist was Dubai’s Team Aqua with Scott Kennedy at the helm and Cameron Appleton on tactics: the United Arab Emirates’ boat is lying top in the rankings with three wins and a second.

A positive debut too for the new entry, Team Ceeref, Igor Lah’s new team from Slovenia, with ex Luna Rossa star, James Spithill, at the helm and Michele Ivaldi also in the cockpit. Third place went to team Omega with Corrado Isenburg from Portofino at the helm, flanked by Russell Coutts on tactics.
James Spithill commented: “We are really satisfied with this first day’s performance. The boat is a lot of fun even if it demands a great deal of physical effort. We hadn’t even considered the possibility of being second, given that we’d only had 4 days in training.”

Today will see the Match races with a change of roles in the cockpit: the boat owners – who took the helm yesterday – will shift to the role of tacticians. Class rules, in fact, make it obligatory for the owners to take the helm during fleet races while, during match races the professionals are free to substitute the boat owner at the helm.

The match races start at 1200 hrs.

Results (after day one)
1. Team AQUA (UAE-1-1-1-2)
2. Team CEEREF (SLO, 4-2-2-3)
3. Team OMEGA (SWITZ, 3-4-4-1)
4. Team BEECOM (JPN, 6-3-3-4)
5. Team MAGIA LIGHTBAY (ITA, 2-5-5-5)
6. Team CRO-A-SAIL (CRO, 5-6-7-6)