The penultimate day of the Darwin Escapes 2019 J/70 World Championship was blessed with beautiful conditions in Tor Bay.With the breeze coming from the land once again, shifts and puffs of breeze made for tricky conditions with snakes and ladders right across the race course. Three windward/leeward races were held in a shifting northerly breeze oscillating 45 degrees, and the mean wind speed was about 12 knots with occasional 20 knot gusts. In the Open Class, Paul Ward’s (GBR) Eat,Sleep,J,Repeat retains the lead having scored a 6-8-30 Thursday. However, Pichu Torcida (ESP) racing Noticia, has shortened their odds on winning the Worlds posting an 11-9-11, finishing the day just four points off the lead. Realistically these two teams will battle for the Open World Championship in a double-header of racing tomorrow. Still in with a chance of winning the title are Alberto Rossi’s (ITA) Enfant Terrible, Joel Ronning’s (USA) Catapult and Claudia Rossi (ITA). In the Corinthian Class, Doug Struth (GBR), racing DSP, has regained the lead but only just. Denis Cherevatenko (RUS), racing Joyfull, had a great day on the water and moved up to second just 4 points off the lead. Wednesday’s leader King & Wilson on Soak Racing (IRL) dropped to third after three mid-fleet finishes. There were race wins Thirsday for Reg Lord (AUS) racing Juno, Enfant Terrible, and Luis Bugallo’s (ESP) MarNaturna.
Luis Bugallo (ESP), MarNaturna, 2018 J/70 Corinthian World Champion, said, “The conditions were a bit easier, especially as there was less chop, but it was still difficult to work out which way to go. This is a difficult place to sail, but it is the same for everybody. We are looking forward to the last day of the regatta. We have a lot of teams in front of us, but we are a young team looking to improve, and just like every day, tomorrow there will be lessons that we can learn.”
Tom Grimes (AUS), Juno, 2019 Youth Match Racing World Champion, said, “The shifts were shorter and more manageable, and we had a much more enjoyable day. We just have to keep it together and avoid any big mistakes. It is a really big thing for us to come and race here, as we only have a few J/70s in Sydney Harbour, so to shake it up with this big competitive fleet is a lot of fun. Tor Bay is a lot like racing on Lake Macquarie where a lot of the crew grew up sailing.”
Ludovico Fassitelli (MON), Junda-Banca del Sempione, said, “We scored two podiums so that was really good. Tor Bay is a big surprise for us, as we were expecting big ocean waves but this is like sailing on a beautiful lake with very strong winds. We are in sixth position and tomorrow we want to stay in there and maybe get up the leaderboard. To race in this beautiful place with 80 boats is great, and we expect to have all of these boats in Monaco 2021for the J/70 World Championship.”
Follow the Darwin Escapes 2019 J/70 World Championship, hosted by the Royal Torbay Yacht Club, with up-to-the-minute coverage as the drama unfolds at https://www.facebook.com/j70uk/
Darwin Escapes 2019 J/70 Worlds website: www.j70worlds2019.com
J/70 teams from all over the world are competing at the Darwin Escapes 2019 J/70 World Championship: Argentina, Australia, Bulgaria, Brazil, Cayman Islands, Cyprus, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Malta, Monaco, the Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, and the United States of America.