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Fast and “FREE” in Cannes….
Winners of Race 1 SUI 313 “FREE” Dirk Oldenburg (Centre) Dominik Zycki & Mikolaj Chadubski
The Cannes Grand Prix began today with a very light easterly breeze of around 5 knots after a short onshore delay. Over eager starters caused a General Recall so our President du Committee de Course, Philippe Faure successfully restarted the 45 boat fleet using the “U” flag, which saw just one early starter.
Patience was required at the beginning of day 1 as competitors waited for the wind.
At first boats starting in the middle of the line looked strong, in particular TUR 1212 “Josephine” helmed by America’s Cup helmsman Andy Beadsworth, who has just won the 4th Winter Series in Cascais. However, as the majority of the fleet were on the right side of the course, TUR 1212 elected to tack onto Port to cover the “pack”. This proved to be a mistake as the boats who continued on Starboard out to the left hand side of the 1.6 mile beat faired best. In fact both DEN 394 & SUI 313 who pushed the furthest left corner finished at the front of the fleet….(2nd & 1st respectively).
2nd DEN 394 “Blue Lady” team of Anders Baggers, Philipp Holm Skafte & Soren Persson (helm)
Another team having a great race was GER 1178 “Lea V” helmed by 78yr old Pit Burkhardt, crewed by his Son Paul and Top Professional Joerg Moessnang who first started racing here in Cannes in 1973! I first met Joerg when he won the Regates Royal in 2000 with nearly 80 boats competing, so plenty of experience here to guide the “Burkhadt” team around the course :-).
3rd in Race 1 were GER 1178 “Lea V” Paul & Pit Burkhardt with Joerg Moessnang.
The race was shortened at the top mark 2nd time as the wind, which had shifted slightly right, was beginning to die away. Despite trying to hold a 2nd race, it was decided at around 4pm to call it a day and head back to the Yacht Club de Cannes for a “Pasta” & “Drinks” get together…
Tomorrow the forecast is for slightly more wind, so hopefully 2 more races may be completed, with an option of holding a 3rd race “if” conditions allow. For sure the Race Committee did their very best today & all the 45 teams look forward to some more competitive race over the next 3 days.
Higher, Faster, Longer……….. Stavros. (GBR 789).
P.S. A late Game of Boule is always good for the Soul 🙂
With EST 17, GER 1178 & GBR 789.