Sweden and Germany took the top prizes of the day at Rolex Baltic Week yesterday

Sweden and Germany took the top prizes of the day at Rolex Baltic Week on Monday (22 August). The day after their Queen Silvia visited the regatta, the crew of Imagine (Peter Rudbäck from Stockholm) was the top scorer at the IMS 600 world championship. In dreamlike sailing conditions on the Baltic Sea off Neustadt the Hamburg-based Harm Müller-Spreer came first at the Dragon worlds. And the Swan Race saw a surprising change in the leader board.

At the end of the shortened 115.3 nautical miles offshore course of the IMS 600 worlds, it was not just matter of minutes, but even of seconds when the race committee took the times at a gate. After 41 nautical miles, the first part of the race was weighted with a points factor of 1.25. At this point, the IMX-40 Moonshine by Matthias Müller von Blumencron from Hamburg was 21 seconds ahead of Imagine on calculated time. “During the night, we did ourselves in with the light and fickle winds off Rostock,” said the skipper to explain why he had to give in to not only the Swedes, but also the Norwegian Ocean Warrior by Sverre Valeur from Bergen.

“We had a fantastic race,” said Peter Rudbäck, “we hade a good run.” Just before reaching the intermediate finish, only the Germans had overtaken the Imagine and scored the optimum. In the end, three IMX-40 yachts were on the podium – much to the disappointment of the other favourites, among them Horst Mann’s L M Hispaniola from Kiel. Even though the Rodman 42 had pushed ahead after coming only 12th halfway, she was not able to do better than rank eighth in the end. “The race had been decided after two hours,” reported tactician Thomas Jungblut (Hamburg), “we were on the right-hand side when the wind continued to turn left.”

Another favourite from Hamburg had a great start at the Hanseatic Lloyd Dragon World Championship. Harm Müller-Spreer steered his Ocasione from the left side of the starting line to the favoured left side of the course. His South German crew with the professional skills of Markus Wieser and the Olympic experience of Thomas Auracher did a great job. Even their Danish competitors were faster at times, Müller-Spreer proved to have the better tactics. “On the second beat we managed to shake them off for good,” said the helmsman. Frank Berg from Hellerup near Copenhagen finished second, ahead of Oleg Kapersky from Moscow.

“The strongest competitor came fourth,” said Müller-Spreer about Jorgen Schönherr. Prior to the worlds, the Danish sailor had won the Gold Cup of the Dragon class and plans to double his success in Neustadt. Current world champion Dieter Schön slipped badly. The German who lives in Austria came only 41st of 73 entrants. And it was even worse for Thomas Müller from Hamburg with his crew Marc Pickel and Ingo Borkowski. They had a premature start and are now at the back of the fleet.

Another favourite slipped at the Swan Race, presented by Deutsche Bank. Following three wins in the days before, Claus Bressler from Hamburg and his Swan 56 Chrila came only seventh in the medium-distance race of 33 nautical miles and had to cede the overall lead to Bobby Luchte. The Flensburg sailor and his Swan 44 MKII Moriju are now at the top. Dietrich Stahl’s Swan 391 Ivana S. had pushed Harald Baum’s Swan 48 Elan from third to fourth place.

Results (from Monday, 22 August)

IMS 600 World Championship

Mid distance race (points factor 1.25)

1. Moonshine, Matthias Müller von Blumencron (Hamburg, Germany)

2. Imagine, Peter Rudbäck (Stockholm, Sweden)

3. Ocean Warrior, Sverre Valeur (Bergen, Norway)

Long distance race (points factor 1.25)1. Imagine

2. Ocean Warrior

3. Moonshine

Overall standings

1. Imagine, Peter Rudbäck (Stockholm, Sweden) 3,4375 points

2. Moonshine, Matthias Müller von Blumencron (Hamburg, Germany) 4,6875

3. Ocean Warrior, Sverre Valeur (Bergen, Norway) 6,25

Hanseatic Lloyd Dragon World Championship

Race 1

1. Müller-Spreer/Wieser/Auracher (Germany)

2. Berg/Kastel/Christensen (Denmark)

3. Kapersky/Shternberg/Chugunov (Russia)

Swan Race presented by Deutsche Bank

Overall standings after four races

1. “Moriju”, Bobby Luchte (Flensburg, Germany) 7

2. “Chrila”, Claus Bressler (Hamburg, Germany) 10

3. “Ivana S.”, Dietrich Stahl (Hamburg, Germany) 14

Dragon World Week

Race 1

1. Jacob/Gusek/Birkner (Berlin, Germany)

2. Ströh/Karsten/Ströh (Hobbersdorf, Germany)

3. Mankowski/Hebbel-Seeger/Fock (Hamburg, Germany)