Monday, 2 February 2009

LVPS: Tough Day for Pataugas by K-Challenge

Pataugas by K-Challenge. Image copyright Gilles Morelle.

by Stephanie Nadin

Pataugas by K-Challenge was racing today its 3rd match against the American team of BMW Oracle Racing, with Russell Coutts at helm. After a long wait for the team members, racing has finally been able to be launched this afternoon, and all races were completed (start for Pataugas by K-Challenge at 4:40pm).

Unfortunately, the French didn´t get a new point today, which means they will have to race in the “silver fleet” in Round Robin 2, and to finish in the two firsts to reach the quarter finals. This scenario is for sure longer, but all is still possible for the French team.

Gilles Favennec, Pit : “we didn´t look bad in front of them, but we found ourselves on the wrong side of the race course at the start, and then, they end up in front of us at the first mark. They will remain in front of us after that, and even if we come back a bit on the downwind leg, this will not be enough to put pressure on them. It is a big team, but we were consistent, and we are not far from getting there. In fact, I´m quite satisfied about the team because the manoeuvres are better and better, and we manage to organize ourselves together, which is a good thing for the future. The bad point is that we really needed that point to avoid the silver fleet, where there will be four teams. But even if the way is longer, it still exists. We all improved a lot the past three days, even if we don´t see that in our results. We are better in the manoeuvres, in the communications, which is what we needed to work on at the beginning. We are still confident for what is coming up, we have everything in our hands.”

Philippe Mourniac, Navigator: “the important event in today's match is that we wanted the right side of the race course like BMW Oracle Racing. But they made a better job than us in getting it, and we found ourselves on the left. From that moment we were a bit late to come back, and when the first crossing happens, we are four lengths behind, which is not a lot, but enough to make the race easy for the Americans until the end.

If we end up in the two firsts of the silver fleet, everything is possible and clocks will be reset for the quarter finals. We will have three matches in Round Robin 2, we need to win at least two. So we still have our cards in our hands, but the coming days will be a bit less comfortable than if we had entered the gold fleet directly.”

Pataugas by K-Challenge will race tomorrow against Emirates Team New Zealand for its last match in Round Robin 1.

Race details:
Mark 1 : 13 seconds for BMW Oracle Racing
Mark 2 : 27 seconds for BMW Oracle Racing
Mark 3 : 37 seconds for BMW Oracle Racing
Finish : 54 seconds for BMW Oracle Racing

Pataugas by K-Challenge

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