At the end of a most exciting final day in Cascais the overall victory had to be decided on count-back as the top 2 boats GBR 769 and POR 66 finished on equal points (16) after 7 fantastic races, with 1 discard. The tie was won by Martin Payne helming GBR 769 “Hombre”, crewed by Nuno Barreto and Rodrigo Vantacich who had recorded 3 race wins during the series…..
POR 66 “Drago” helmed by Jose’ Matoso, crewed by Gustavo Lima and Frederico Melo thus had to settle for 2nd place, whilst the current Gold Cup winning team GBR 801 “Alfie” helmed by Lawrie Smith, crewed by Tim Tavinor and Joost Houweling finished just 1 point behind in 3rd place.
The winning “Corinthian” Team was well won and well deserved by SWE 385 “Still Crazy” who also won the last race and finished a very creditable 5th overall, helmed by Stefan Winberg, crewed by Nicola and Thomas Wilton.
The final day began with POR 66 having a 2 point lead from GBR 801, with GBR 769 2 points further back. However, after a poor start GBR 769 “Hombre” decided to push all the way to the left hand side of the first upwind leg, as the Easterly wind varied between 6 to 10 kts. Fortune smiled on the brave and although POR 65 was the lead boat at the first mark, GBR 769 was close behind and ahead of his two main rivals…
On the down wind leg, GBR 769 gybed first and overtook POR 65 to lead into the gate, electing to take the right hand mark that would allow them to go to the left side of the course again, where there seemed to be more pressure. Despite a very spirited attempt by GBR 801 “Alfie” on the final down wind leg, Lawrie Smith could not pass the cool and collected “Hombre” team who took the winning gun, so GBR 801 was 2nd and POR 50 “Christmas” Pedro Mendes Leal, crewed by Diogo Cayolla and Jorge Ferlov Ribeiro who finished 3rd.
So with POR 66 and GBR 801 now tied on 12 points and GBR 769 on 13 points the stage was set for a cracking final race in a building Easterly breeze and even the sun came out ! With an individual recall sounded at the final start, only GBR 769 elected to return to re-start, but the “X” flag remained displayed, meaning others were over…. GBR 801 chose to go hard left, GBR 769 hard right and POR 66 had to decide from the middle which boat to cover!
In the end both sides came out equal but POR 66 was struggling in the middle. At the first top mark GBR 801 was notified that they were one of the OCS boat’s along with GER 1102, and so made their way back to the Marina. Meanwhile GBR 769 rounded just ahead of POR 66 and despite their best efforts POR 66 could not catch GBR 769 on the down wind leg… With SWE 385 “Still Crazy” helmed by Stefan Winberg out in front and GER 1123 “Pow Wow” Michael Zankel in 2nd place, GBR 769 now had to hold onto 3rd place to take the overall victory. This is exactly what happened….
It was a fantastic three days of sailing in this wonderful part of the world. The Club Naval de Cascais put on complementary “Hot” Meals and a “Happy Hour” each day and a great time was had by all….
In closing Martin Payne thanked the Club’s helpers and volunteer’s for all their hard work, complemented his crew Nuno & Rodrigo, and thanked Portugal for having much better weather than most of Europe 🙂
Higher, Faster, Longer……………….. Stavros. (GBR 769).