12583890_1075771622462766_384768366_nPOR 66 “Drago” helmed by Jose’ Matoso, crewed by Gustavo Lima & Frederico Melo.

It was another perfect “sunny” sailing day for the 3rd Cascais Winter Series, as the predicted 10 to 12kt Easterly blew in from Lisbon across the flat waters off the Estoril coastline. With three more races completed the regatta is beginning to take shape as the “cream” rises to the top 🙂

In the first race of the day (race 3 of the series), GER 1123 “Pow Wow” helmed by Michael Zankel, crewed by Pedro Andrade & Phil Blinn showed why they have won both earlier Winter Series events (in Nov & Dec 2015) as they made an excellent start at the pin end of the line and were able to lead the fleet in towards the shore. At the appropriate time, “Pow Wow” tacked and crossed the fleet, which gave them a slender lead at the top mark, just ahead of GBR 801 “Alfie” helmed by Lawrie Smith & ESP 71 “Gunter” Javier Scherk.

12516512_1075771619129433_712640236_nGER 1123 “Pow Wow” Michael Zankel, Pedro Andrade & Phil Blinn win race 3 of the series.

After a down wind, a second up wind and a final down wind “Pow Wow” was able to hold onto her lead and win the race from GBR 801 Lawrie Smith, Tim Tavinor & Joost Houweling 2nd and ESP 71 Javier Scherk, Diogo Barros & Paulo Manso 3rd.

In the second race of the day (race 4 of the series) it was once again GBR 769 “Hombre” who showed a clean pair of heels off the start line to open up a substantial lead for Martin Payne, Nuno Barretto and Rodrigo Vantacich. In fact despite POR 66 Jose’ Matoso and GBR 801 Lawrie Smith trying their hardest to make inroads into “Hombre’s” lead, they eventually had to settle for 2nd and 3rd respectively as the winning margin at the end of the two up wind and two down wind course was a full 4 minutes….

12431282_1075771625796099_1467088747_nGBR 769 “Hombre” Martin Payne, Nuno Barretto and Rodrigo Vantacich win race 4 of the series.

For the final race of the day, (race 5 of the series), it was POR 66 “Drago” that made a brilliant start at the pin end and sailed very fast all the way to the left. When they eventually tacked on the lay line, Jose’ and his top Professional Team of Gustavo Lima and Frederico Melo made a perfect call to round the top mark ahead of GER 1123 “Pow Wow” and GBR 801 “Alfie”. This is how the top three boats finished giving Jose’ and his team the current overall lead after 5 races….

12583910_1075771605796101_456814196_nPOR 66 “Drago” Jose’ Matoso, Gustavo Lima and Frederico Melo win race 5 of the series.

So the standings after 5 of the 7 races sailed (after discard) : 2 races to go.

POR 66 “Drago”   8pts.      GBR 801 “Alfie”  10pts.   GBR 769 “Hombre”  12pts.

Although the fleet has been small (14 boats) the racing has been of the highest standard, with just the slightest mistake costing an unlucky team two or three places…  The Race Officer of the Club Naval de Cascais has done an excellent job setting good true courses, perfect start lines and equal gates. The turn around time between races has been quick and even when a giant Tanker elected to moor up right in the middle of the race area, a new course was set in a matter of minutes, so many congratulations to Jose Cancella our PRO… 

Top “Corinthian” Team is SWE 385 “Still Crazy” helmed by Stefan Winberg, crewed by Nicola and Thomas Wilton. This very experienced team are currently 5th overall and are putting together an excellent series…

12571174_1075771615796100_934175606_nLeading “Corinthians” SWE 385 “Still Crazy” make a very good start in the middle of the line.

With two more races to go, it’s still up for grabs as to who will win the event. The forecast is again good so another great day of sailing is eagerly anticipated by all the fortunate sailors who have made the effort to travel to Portugal.  It is hoped that more boats will be joining in the fun as there are two more Winter Series to go (Feb & March) and the fantastic Grade 1 Juan Carlos Trophy in April. With the next World Championships also here in Cascais in June 2017, why not get your boat down here?  You will not be disappointed…..   🙂

Higher, Faster, Longer………           Stavros.   (GBR 769).

A Huge THANK YOU once again to Ricardo Pinto, our excellent Dragon Photographer…!!