Sunday, 8 February 2009

LVPS: Pataugas by K-Challenge gets ready for the Challenger Sail-Off

Pataugas by K-Challenge circles with China Team in the pre-start. Image copyright Franck Socha.

by Stephanie Nadin

Last race in the Round Robin 2 for Pataugas by K-Challenge who was racing today against China Team in the silver fleet.

The French team who already had two victories in the basket didn't manage to get another point unfortunately, but this doesn't change anything to the result as they now move up to the Challenger Sail Off after yesterday's win against Shosholoza.
The wind has been very complicated today in Auckland, and the teams have had to wait quite long for the races to start. A first race was launched between Pataugas by K-Challenge and China Team, where Sebastien Col did a really good start, and was leading the race by almost 200m before rounding the first mark. But this race was canceled, as the first leg lasted more than 20 minutes.

The second start was launched just after the course had been repositioned, but this time it was not good for the French, as they blew up their spinnaker on the last downwind leg, so the race was over.

Olivier Herledant, Mastman: “it was a long day waiting for the wind, and we had a good start on the first race, sailing on the right side of the course and getting more wind, which allowed us to lead the race. But the race was canceled because of the shifty wind. On the second race our start was only average, and we didn´t manage to take the lead on the first upwind leg. The first spinnaker hoist was good, we come back very close to them on the downwind leg, but nothing special happens on the second upwind leg. At the third mark they are still within our reach, and we can get them, but when we hoist the spinnaker, it blows up, not because of a big mistake, but because of several small ones, mainly due to the fact that we didn´t train in these wind conditions. By the time we hoisted an other spinnaker, the race was lost.
We are disappointed, as we could have got them on this last leg.

"We will repair the spinnaker for the next races in any case.

"We will see who we will sail against in the Challenger Sail Off, we have to be patient now, we will have our chance, and we learn from our today's mistakes for the rest of the event, we'll work on that during the two coming days before the Sail Off.”

The Challenger Sail Off will take place on February 11, and Pataugas by K-Challenge will know who its first opponent will be at the end of Round Robin 2 races for the gold fleet, which are still on for the two coming days (8 and 9 February).

Pataugas by K-Challenge

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