Monday, 11 April 2011

Team Tunnicliffe Ready And Waiting At Princessa Sofia Trofeo Regatta

Spanish Clock/Sundial. Image copyright Deb Capozzi 2011.

by Anna Tunnicliffe

Racing starts tomorrow at the third stop on the ISAF World Cup Circuit, the Princess Sofia Trophy Regatta here in Palma, Spain. There are 24 teams, 16 from the top 18 in the ISAF World rankings, coming in from 18 countries. The racing starts tomorrow morning at 10am and runs through Saturday afternoon, when the winners will be presented with their awards from Queen Sofia herself.

After arriving on the overnight ferry on Friday morning, we took full advantage of our days' off from training to relax and catch up on sleep, work, and rest. The ferry docked at 6:45am, so we headed to our apartment and took a nap. After a couple of hours, we shook ourselves out of bed to visit our favourite coffee shop before heading off to take a walk around the old town and cathedral. It is quite cool to see the architecture of all the buildings and the way the city was laid out. We ventured up to the cathedral, but it cost money to get in, so we walked around the outside and marveled at the architecture of that too. Molly and I made a video blog from just outside the cathedral which we posted on Facebook (Anna Tunnicliffe page), but there was a bit too much wind interference, so we will work on that for future video blogs.

On Saturday morning, Molly and I went for our runs, and Debbie went to the gym. After breakfast, we relaxed for an hour before we went to register for the event. Registration is a fairly easy process for match racers. We show up, present all the required documents, stand on a scale to weigh in and sign some forms. The whole thing only took about 15 minutes, so we were out of there quite quickly. The rest of the day was spent hanging out at our apartments, doing laundry and getting ready for today's practice and the regatta tomorrow.

Today was the official practice day for the regatta. We were scheduled to practice at 12:00pm, but the wind was very light almost to the point of being non-existent for the morning time slots, so practice was pushed back half an hour to give them a chance to see if any wind filled in. When we got out on the water to rotate into the boats around 12:15, the conditions were still extremely light air, and it didn't look like there was going to be much wind for us either. We rotated in at 12:30 and drifted around for a frustrating 20 minutes before a wind line filled in and we ended up having a great hour and a half practice. We did a couple drills by ourselves before we joined up with our fellow USSTAG teammates Sally Barkow and team, and France's Claire Leroy, to do a couple practice starts with each. The time slot quickly came to a close and we rotated our boat to the next group. At 6:30pm we had our umpire briefing during which we get to ask the umpires and race committee questions, and they take the opportunity to introduce themselves and tell us about their intentions for the week.

We have just finished a fantastic dinner of rice, tuna and veggies which Molly made us and soon we will be off to bed to get some sleep before the racing tomorrow. We are in group C which means we are scheduled to race last after groups A and B, so racing for us should start between 2-3pm. I'm not sure if there will be a live feed on the regatta website, but I will tweet as soon as we get in to let everyone know how our day went. The forecast is for great wind tomorrow, so racing should get started on time.

We would like to thank our gold level sponsor 11th Hour Racing, and our bronze level sponsors Carmeuse, Trinity Yachts, and Chicago Match Race Center for their continued support of our campaign for the 2012 Olympic Games. We would also like to thank US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics (USSTAG) and its sponsors for their continued support. Also, thank you to our private donors. Please remember that any and all donations/contributions to our campaign should be made payable directly to either The Sailing Foundation of New York (tax deductible) memo'd Anna Tunnicliffe, or to Anna Tunnicliffe.

Team Tunnicliffe