After day one, both the event and the series are all to play for
Going into this final event of the 2010 World Match Racing Tour there were five skippers who had a mathematical chance of winning the 2010 Tour. Mathieu Richard (French Match Racing Team), Adam Minoprio (ETNZ/BlackMatch Racing), Ben Ainslie (TEAMORIGIN), Torvar Mirsky (Mirsky Racing Team) and Ian Williams (Team GAC Pindar) were all in contention.
On day one the Monsoon squalls brought bucketing rain and winds from every direction, delaying the start of the Round Robin series until mid-afternoon.
Ian Williams (GBR) Team GAC Pindar made an impressive start to his Monsoon Cup campaign by posting a 3-0 scoreline in the opening Qualifying Session in Kuala Terengganu whilst Mathieu Richard (FRA) French Match Racing Team did little to silence his rivals, losing both of his match races.
Richard, who has both defending champion, Adam Minoprio (NZL) ETNZ/BlackMatch Racing and Ben Ainslie (GBR) TEAMORIGIN breathing down his neck in the race for the championship, needed a strong start here in Malaysia. An early defeat to Ian Williams was followed by a match against Bjorn Hansen (SWE) Hansen Global Team. Having picked up a penalty in the pre-start, Richard tried to wind it off at one of the mark roundings but forfeited his lead in doing so, allowing the Swedish skipper to take control of the race and finish 45 seconds ahead. It was a bad time to lose for the first time this season against the Swede.
Ben Ainslie said: “A very tricky day on a very challenging course. What we really like about this venue is that on a day like today every leg is different. There was very little current, only on the last race did it seem to have any real influence.”
“If you look at the line up of this Monsoon Cup, it is one of the toughest fields I have seen in terms of the quality. I think really, we have talked a lot about the different possibilities and who has to win and who has to finish where. The reality is everyone is just going to race as hard as they can.”
Results after day one:
Skipper / Win Loss Record
Mathieu Richard, 0-2
Adam Minoprio, 0-1
Ben Ainslie, 2-1
Torvar Mirsky, 1-0
Ian Williams, 3-0
Jesper Radich, 0-2
Francesco Bruni, 1-0
Peter Gilmour, 1-2
Bjorn Hansen, 2-0
Keith Swinton, 1-0
Phil Robertson, 1-1
Jeremy Koo, 0-3
To watch the racing live, visit www.wmrt.com.