Briton Ian Williams of 'Team Pindar' will race quarter finals of Allianz Cup today 27/10/06

British sailor Ian Williams of Team Pindar will today be racing in the quarter finals of the Allianz Cup Presented by Oracle having won the Group A round robin. The fifth event in the 2006/07 World Match Racing Tour began with some nail-biting racing on Wednesday in San Francisco Bay and will culminate in an all stars final at the St Francis Yacht Club on Sunday.

Ian and his team of brother Mark, Bill Hardesty, Gerry Mitchell and Chresten Plinius sponsored by Pindar and current leaders of the World Match Racing Tour beat Peter Holmberg (ISV) of ‘Alinghi’ and Ben Ainslie (GBR) of ‘Emirates Team New Zealand’, two America’s Cup syndicates to earn its place in the quarter finals.

Going into the quarter finals with a 5-2 (five wins, two losses) record, Team Pindar will race amongst the top eight teams, fighting it out in a knockout series with the top four advancing to the semi finals. Ian’s aim in San Francisco is to remain at the top World Match Racing Tour ladder, having taken the lead at the illustrious King Edward VII Gold Cup in Bermuda earlier this month.

Ian commented: “The field here is tough; any of the teams qualifying for the next round will be hard to beat. We will wait to see who that will be before planning our approach to the quarter finals, but we’re looking forward to some great racing. The conditions here in the Bay are quite tricky, with a strong current and light winds, so it’s a challenging venue to sail at. This event – in which we are racing under the Pindar flag for the first time – is one of the most important and exciting events in this year’s World Match Racing Tour calendar.”

Ian, 29, recently signed a sponsorship deal with Pindar, who are celebrating their support of Williams by becoming a main partner of the Allianz Cup Presented by Oracle. Prior to the quarter final competition today ‘Team Pindar’ will be taking part in a ‘Pro-Am’ regatta, in which six Pindar guests will sail aboard the Pindar yacht, battling it out for the Pro-Am title amongst seven other teams.

Andrew Pindar, Chairman of the Pindar Group commented: “San Francisco is a wonderful venue for a top match racing competition and I am delighted to be here this weekend to see the team in action against some of the best names in the world of match racing. It’s great to be involved in the Allianz Cup Presented by Oracle and we will be cheering on ‘Team Pindar’ from the grandstand.”