SwissStart of race 4th of the Swiss Nationals on Lake Thun, with the breeze from Interlaken…

As the clouds begin to lift around the mountainous Bernese Oberland region of central Switzerland, the wind yesterday came from the nearby direction of Interlaken. This set a different test to the competitors of the 2017 Swiss National Championship especially to the “new comers” who are finding out more about the small intricacies of lake racing…

As we race by the magnificent scenery of old Timber Houses and Parkland on either side of this wonderful setting it’s easy to forget the sailing and simply enjoy the view :-). Especially as the weather improves and the amazing mountains of Stockhorn, Niesen and the Niederhorn become visible….

At the top mark in the first race yesterday (race 4 of the Swiss Nationals) it was SUI 297 helmed by Norbet Stadler who rounded ahead, closely followed by SUI 325 & GBR 789. Although the overall leader RUS 76 was not in the leading pack it did not take Dmitry Samohkin and his fantastic team of Andrey Kirilyuk & Aleksey Bushuev long before they once again took the lead.

Top3The top three boats at the fist windward mark were SUI 297, SUI 325 & GBR 789.

By the end of the race RUS 76 had increased their lead to record a 4th consecutive win, which is really an amazing achievement, so full praise again to this great team. The current World Champions TUR 1212 finally began to understand the small suttleties of lake sailing to finish 2nd & GBR 789 maintained 3rd place.

In the second race of the day (Race 5 of the Swiss Nationals) it was SUI 297 Norbet Stadler who really opened up a fantastic lead and try as they may, RUS 76 could not catch this very experienced lake sailing Swiss team who recently won the Alpen Cup just a week ago. Many congratulations to Norbet and his crew of Ralph Muntener & Christoph Burger. Dmitry did however finish 2nd with SUI 341 Urs Ruppli 3rd.

Swiss1The amazing Mountains surrounding Lake Thun begin to appear as the weather improves.

So overall after 5 races RUS 76 lead with just 6pts and seem most likely to wrap up the Championship today… In 2nd place is GER 1018 helmed by Christof Wieland with TUR 1212 currently in 3rd.

As we returned to the Yacht Club after sailing many more boats are now arriving to prepare for next weeks European Championships. With all the usual familiar faces from around the International Dragon Circuit making up a 63 boat fleet, it will be interesting to see if anyone can beat RUS 76 who are in the form of their lives….

Higher, Faster, Longer………….   Stavros.   (GBR 789).

My thanks again to Peter Kupferschmied for these on-the-water photo’s… 🙂