Stephan Link, Frank Butzmann & Michi Lipp win in Torbole’

31 teams ventured to the beautiful Circolo Vela Torbole’ to compete in the 17th edition of the Hans-Detmar Wagner Cup and Italian Open National Championship. This superb location lies at the northern tip of Lake Garda and is renowned for its morning northerly wind Peler’ and the afternoon wind from the south, the Ora.

The 8 races for these lucky teams were all sailed in the afternoon Ora wind and conditions could not have been better. At the halfway stage after 4 races the clear leader was GER 77 helmed by Ingo Ehricher, crewed by Malte Philipp & Thomas Auracher recording 1st, 5th, 2nd & 2nd, however, a 23rd in race 5 followed by a BFD in race 6 put paid to any chance of overall success, so Ingo and his team had to settle for 6th place overall.

GER 77 Into Ehricher, Malte Philipp & Thomas Auracher 6th overall.

Lake Garda is the largest lake in Italy and is surrounded by mountains whose shape is typical of a valley, so this is the main reason the 2 different winds tend to funnel through these high rising mountains. The afternoon “Ora” breeze can increase throughout the day and racing conditions were summed up by Klaus Diederichs (GBR 819) who sailed a fantastic regatta with Jamie Lea & Ruairidh Scott to finish 2nd place overall!

Klaus told me, “We had superb conditions for all 3 days with 12-16kts and great sunshine, Lake Garda at it’s best. A fleet of 30 plus boats is ideal for this venue, with very tight racing and many different leaders, 5 teams could still win the event on the last day! Great hospitality ashore with Pasta Parties, Dinner and ample supply of Italian Wine. A big thank you to Circolo Vela Torbole” Klaus also mentioned that several new young teams from both Germany and Italy are emerging so the Dragon Class is looking very healthy for the future.

2nd overall GBR 819 “Fever” Klaus Diederichs, Jamie Lea & Ruairidh Scott.

In 3rd place overall was RUS 76 “RocknRolla” with Dmitry Samokhin, Kasper Harsberg & Andrey Kirilyuk.. This top Russian team are always in the mix with countless podium finishes. Dmitry, Kasper & Andrey have great teamwork and are usually in the right place at the right time. Many congratulations to these 3 podium teams….

2nd Jamie Lea, 1st Frank, Stephan & Michi, 3rd Andrey & Kasper (Klaus & Dmitry missing).

Winning crew Michi Lipp told me “It was great to win the HDW Cup, to compete in the Trofeo Bertamini and Italian National Championships, the northern part of Lake Garda and the club Circolo Vela has offered perfect conditions. The famous Ora increased day by day up to 19kts on the final race and it was good to see 31 participants from 8 countries”. Thank you Michi and very well done to you, Stephan and Frank… See you in San Remo.

Amazing conditions in Torbole’ (another nice photo from Elena Giolai).

4th Overall was SUI 318 “1 Quick 1” helmed by Wolf Waschkuhn, crewed by Charles Nankin & Joao Vidinha (Far right in the podium photo). Wolf and his top team continue to be rewarded for countless hours on the water and since upgrading to his new V6 Petticrows has seen a gradual climb up the rankings. This shows participation and dedication pays dividends and Wolf and his young crew continue to gain respect within the fleet..

5th overall and Top Corinthian team was GER 1135 helmed by Philip Ocker, crewed by Florien Grosser & Oliver Davies. This top Corinthian team also managed to win race 7 and race 8 so really showing the professionals a trick or two..  Well done guy’s, amazing effort.

Top Corinthian Team & 5th Overall GER 1135 Philip, Florien & Oliver.

So another great regatta for the International Dragon Class, 30 boats in Cannes, followed by 31 boats in Torbole’… Next we travel over to Port Camargue (France) 14th-17th Oct, then San Remo (Italy) 27th-31st Oct for the last Grand Prix of 2021 and Finals… With many local fleets having good turnouts and several winter series planned across Europe, I can assure you all the Dragon Class is alive and kicking…  The final photo for this report is from Christopher Nordhoff an amazing shot of the winners GER 62 powering upwind!

GER 62 Michi Lipp (Red Hat), Frank Butzmann & Stephan Link.

Higher, Faster, Longer……..  Stavros.

P.S. Photo’s supplied by Christopher Nordhoff and Elena Giolai…