44Cup Marstrand 2021 – Day 2

Team Aleph joins the dots to lead 44Cup Marstrand

In an example of the high performance RC44 one design class’ typically ultra-close racing, so yesterday’s winners dropped to the bottom of the pile at the 44Cup Marstrand as those managing to remain the most consistent rose gradually to the top. In four races there have now been four different winners.

For competitors and race management alike it was a difficult day with 15 knots of northeasterly offshore wind that dropped to below 10 as the afternoon wore on, combined with a tricky cross-current, often causing the right side to be favoured.

On board Dutchman Nico Poons’ Charisma, winner of the 44Cup Marstrand in 2018, tactician Hamish Pepper called this correctly in the first race, starting at the committee boat end and tacking. Gaining maximum benefit to the right Poons’ team rounded the first mark and from there never looked back.

Race two was also won out of the start but on this occasion from the pin, with Igor Lah’s overall 44Cup leaders on Team CEEREF taking this option on their own. This allowed the Slovenian team under tactician Adrian Stead to nose into the lead as the eight boats seemed to play the shifts in unison going up the first beat. The run was tricky but Team CEEREF defended well to take the bullet.

The third and final race of the day saw Hugues Lepic’s Team Aleph perform a similar start at the pin with Team CEEREF on their hip. While there was greater separation across the race track in this, the French team, with Michele Ivaldi, a two time winner here, calling the shots, managed to lead round the top mark. Despite some significant shifts they hung on to first all the way to the finish.

Both Team Aleph and Charisma scored a 1, 2 and 3 today but Team Aleph enjoyed a better opening day and now leads the 44Cup Marstrand by three points. But as we have seen repeatedly in this class, results at the half way stage is rarely any indicator of what the final outcome might be when the event concludes on Sunday afternoon.

Photo Credits: Martinez Studio / 44Cup