Wednesday, 10 March 2010

LVT: Tricky Conditions on Day One for TEAMORIGIN losing to Azzurra

In light and shifty conditions TEAMORIGIN lost to their first opponent, the Italian Azzurra team. In the other races today All4One took victory from Mascalzone Latino and Emirates Team New Zealand took a win from the Swedish Artemis team. The fourth race of the day was won by Aleph over Synergy

Azzurra leads TEAMORIGIN on Day One in Auckland. Image copyright Ian Roman/TEAMORIGIN.

by Leslie Greenhalgh

On the first day of the Louis Vuitton Trophy Auckland regatta the wind did not appear until well into the afternoon. Although bright sunshine and late summer temperatures greeted the sailors it was not until 14:30 that the first match, between ALL4ONE and Mascalzone Latino got underway in a seven knot Northerly over a 1.5 mile leg length course in the Rangitoto Channel. All4One, the French/German team, won the right hand side and lead at the first windward mark by 19 seconds going on to extend their lead to take the race and win their first point by 44 seconds.

TEAMORIGIN were scheduled to race in the second start against the Italian team AZZURRA, the team that won the Louis Vuitton Trophy Nice regatta in November last year.

Skipper Ben Ainslie made a good entry from the starboard end and fought for and won the right hand side which had appeared favoured in the first race on the same course. The Italian team, on the left hand side of the course, managed to keep the battle close up the first beat, the pair converging twice before the power of the right hand side forced the Italian team back away to the left. The Italians did however manage to stay very much in touch.

Whilst TEAMORIGIN led around the first windward mark, holding Azzurra up to weather and beyond the buoy, when they both eventually turned downwind Azzurra made a quicker spinnaker hoist as they were set up for a bear away hoist whilst TEAMORIGIN had set up for a gybe hoist. Azzurra managed to cast a wind shadow on TEAMORIGIN forcing TEAMORIGIN into a slow gybe away. At that point Azzurra took the lead. TEAMORIGIN worked hard to stay in contention and made some gains on the last run but Azzurra and went on to sail defensively and into an unassailable lead of 53 seconds at the end of the second lap.

TEAMORIGIN gets the right at the start. Image copyright Ian Roman/TEAMORIGIN.

Ben Ainslie, Skipper and Helmsman commented after the race, “Azzurra sailed a good race today, they seem to have a knack of overtaking us which is getting very frustrating!. I was happy with the start and 1st beat call, we were fully in contention at the top mark and tried to hold them up, we were unfortunately set up for a gybe set given the wind direction and they were set up for a straight bear away hoist which allowed them to gain some distance and take the lead. We pushed hard to keep it close for the rest of the race especially on the final run but a couple of shifts went their way and they took the race win. For sure there were some positives from the day but we have to work on not losing the leads. Tomorrow is another day.”

In the third race of the day, Emirates Team New Zealand took a race win over Artemis. The Swedish Artemis team made great inroads into ETNZ on the 2nd downwind leg but the Kiwis stretched out again on the next beat and went on to win by 1 min 40 s.

Race results Tuesday:

Race 1 : All4One (1) beat Mascalzone Latino (0) by 44s
Race 2 : Azzurra (1) beat TEAMORIGIN (0) by 53s
Race 3 : ETNZ (1) beat Artemis (0) by 1 m 40s
Race 4 : Aleph (1) beat Synergy (0) by 3m 26s

Race schedule for Wednesday 10th March, is as follows:

Race 1: TEAMORIGIN (GBR) vs All4One(FRA)
Race 2 : Mascalzone (ITA) vs. ETNZ (NZL)
Race 3: Azzurra (ITA) vs Synergy (RUS)
Race 4: Aleph (FRA) vs Artemis(SWE)


Pawel is our ‘strong man’, our powerhouse, weighing in at 140 kgs and capable of bench pressing 210 kgs, he has a fascinating background coming into sailing via a very different route to most of our sailing team. He was the winner of a local strong man competition in 2000, and 2nd in the Junior National Championships for shot put in 1998. He moved into the sailing world 2000 with Karol Jablonski, and then took on his first America’s Cup with the Italian +39 team. He joined TEAMORIGIN in 2007 and forms an essential part of our team.

Quote from Pawel: “I joined TEAMORIGIN because I saw the sailors they had lined up and wanted the opportunity to sail with such a talented bunch of guys. I really believe that if we work hard, we can be good enough to win this Cup and I will be training as hard as possible to make sure our manoeuvres are better than everyone else’s!”

Louis Vuitton Trophy

No comments: