Trapani, Italy. BMW ORACLE Racing opened its account at the Trapani Louis Vuitton Act 8 regatta in Sicily with back-to-back victories over the United Internet Germany team and the South African Team Shosholoza. The first flight of matches was completed in 10-13 knot breezes, but as the afternoon wore on the breeze dropped and shifted into the southwest with some significant localized windshifts that caused upsets in some of the other matches. In both of its races, USA-76 made gains on every leg of the course to claim comfortable wins.
Race One summary:
BMW ORACLE Racing (USA-76) gained its first point of the Trapani Louis Vuitton Act 8 regatta in Sicily by leading United Internet Team Germany (GER-72) from start to finish in the opening race of the regatta. The result was basically decided in the opening moments, when, after a spirited pre-start, the German team made a premature start and had to turn back and re-cross the line. USA-76 hit the startline at speed exactly on the gun and sprinted away into a commanding lead. Sailing in an 11-13 knot breeze, USA-76 stretched its advantage on every leg of the course, to finally win the match by 2 minutes 12 seconds.
Race Two summary:
In a light and very shifty breeze, BMW ORACLE Racing claimed its second victory of the opening day against the South African Team Shosholoza. Skipper Chris Dickson and the crew of USA-76 controlled the race off the startline and herded the South African yacht all the way out to the port-hand layline, tacked once and led around the first windward mark with a 40 second advantage. On each succeeding leg of the race, USA-76 made gains, to finally cross the finish line with a 1 minute 40 second lead over RSA-83.
Quotes from Peter Isler, USA-76 navigator:
“The breeze conditions were actually steadier than we were expecting. However, in the second match, the wind dropped and as you looked across the course, you could see very strange things happening on the right hand side. The left and the middle were pretty steady, but the right was totally weird, so we made sure we kept away from that.
“We were obviously very happy to make gains on each leg of the course in both matches. We were going pretty fast for the conditions, so we were happy with our boatspeed. Coming off the start against Team Shosholoza we were even off the line and to windward of them. It was one of those situations where – particularly in light airs – you would expect to fall down towards them. But we were able to live on their windward side and made steady gains. That was the best leg of the day for us, because the pressure was on.
“The afterguard combination worked well. We have a long way to go in terms of being a well-oiled machine, but there were no problems at all. Tactician Bertrand Pacé gets my Player of the Day award. He did a fantastic job of making very clear and concise calls right through the day.”
BMW ORACLE Racing 2pt
Luna Rossa 2pt
Victory Challenge 2pt
Emirates Team New Zealand 1pt
United Internet Team Germany 1pt
+39 Challenge 0pt
Mascalzone Latino Capitalia 0pt
China Team 0pt
Desafio Espanol 2007 0pt
Team Shosholoza 0pt
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