No reason to leave Cardiff…
Act 3 Cardiff is in full motion and the first 6 races have been completed with all the commotion and drama you can wish for.
On a day where britons – and the world – were focusing elsewhere than Cardiff, SAP Extreme Sailing Team sailed a satisfying set of races placing the team in 3rd place after Oman Air in front and 2nd place Red Bull Racing. The points are close though and a lot can happen throughout the remainder of the act.
On a day, starting rather lull, the westerly wind picked up gradually throughout the day ending in the 14 knot region with gusts in the 20’s and as both Rasmus Køstner, Jes Gram-Hansen and the coach Michael Hestbæk all repeated, the key to wins was getting good starts. The tactical passing lanes are few on the race course i Cardiff, so the right position and full speed across the starting line is the key to win races. Though the wind come in patchy puffs, the differences in wind are not that great for passing in the middle of the race.
Jes Gram-Hansen, helmsman, was on a positive note right after the first day of racing: “That was a good day. A really good day. We are right there among the top contenders with good speed, maneuvers and tactics. Tha battles at the starting line are what they are and sometimes you win and sometimes you don’t”.
The keen observer watching the live broadcasting could watch the continous battle for the pin end at every start, usually finding Oman Air, Red Bull and SAP battling out for position. The top 3 teams at the scoreboard…
“Yeah, it was a rough one and especially Oman got the better of us during the day. The nailed it more than we did and thats how it goes sometimes” said Jes, a subtle aknowledgement from a world class America’s Cup starting match race helmsman having made a trade i starting.
On a side note, SAP Extreme Sailing Team are racing with a new and improved mast which was installed days before the racing and though much of the battling are about tactics, the SAP Sailing Analytics may also reveal a slight improvement?
Time will tell and see for yourself by following the live broadcast at http://www.extremesailingseries.com/live