Day two of the Swedish National Championship was not for the faint-hearted ! With 18 kts of westerly wind, gusting up to 26 and maybe even 28 at times, it was a day for the bold and brave as the clear blue sea’s off Bastad offered superb surfing conditions. Most of the 36 boats ventured out for the 11am first warning signal, but one third (12 boats) returned to the safety of the beautiful surrounds of the inner harbour after deciding not to risk damage before the main event next week…..
However, “the show must go on” and so the 24 boats who remained at sea had two fantastic races testing crew-work, sailing skills and boat maintenance!
So the day was set to see who would step up to the plate and except the challenge laid down by Britain’s Lawrie Smith on day one…. That challenge was taken up by the current European Champion Lars Hendriksen. Sailing his beautiful “Eva” a Pedersen & Thuesen from 1957, Lars and his “Star” crew of Robert Stanjek and Frithjof Kleen showed tremendous team work and boat speed to win both races! Which now after 4 completed races (with one discard) gives them a single point lead over Smith.
I spoke with Lars shortly after the races he told me “It was the most perfect sailing conditions with great surfing opportunities, we had a poor start at the committee boat end in the first race and saw DEN 411 Jorgen Schonherr take the early lead. After one complete round we opted for the left hand leeward gate as all the leaders took the right buoy so that they could head towards the “favoured” left side of the beat. However, we played the shifts on the right side and came into the windward mark on a 15 degree starboard lift ! This put us very close to Jorgen. Unfortunately we messed up the hoist, but after catching some amazing waves we worked hard to surf past the lead boat and win the race”. Wonderful sailing guys and well done to Jorgen who finished 2nd.
Not everyone had it easy in the tough conditions, but all ended well with this Swedish team 🙂
Lars continued ” In the second race we won the pin end of the line and kept going until we could cross the fleet. Once we had crossed on port tack, many of the boats continued too far and over-stood the starboard lay-line, this made our lead at the top mark even bigger! We then extended and won the race comfortably”. Well done again to you and your experienced team.…
When sailing a Dragon some people ask “Who needs a boat anyway” 🙂
There are three Swedish Teams chasing the top two boats, SWE 375 helmed by Martin Palsson and SWE 358 helmed by Hans Liljeblad both on 14pts. Followed by SWE 385 helmed by Stefan Wineberg who had an excellent day yesterday with a 3rd and a 4th & now sits on 17pts……
With a possible three more races today to decide this Championship all eyes will be on the two leading boats DEN 138 & GBR 801, but I am sure the battle will also be on for the honour of finishing top Swedish Team….. 🙂
Higher, Faster, Longer………………….. Stavros.