Menorca delivered a fantastic championship on the water and on shore. On two days the SW’ly breeze gave way to the N’ly Mistral and so providing contrasting, open race courses on the same day. Today’s climax was raced in brisk 12-18 kts N’lies with some big shifts. And ashore the friendly ambience and quiet, easygoing charm, contrasts favourably with Palma, Mallorca and Ibiza.
Quantum Racing closed out their fifth TP52 world title with a solid, workmanlike fifth in the last race of the 52 World Championship 2016 on Sunday 18th September. Their title victory was marked by an emotional roller coaster of a weekend during which they were pressed hard by the defending champions who composed a hot streak of three back to back wins. Shooting themselves in the foot with a Black Flag Disqualification from the second race Saturday more than doubled the pressure.
After starting the penultimate day of the championship, Saturday, with a lead of 17 points and no race finish worse than third from the six starts, Quantum Racing fell victims to a black flag disqualification from Race 8. With Azzurra’s back to back wins and Quantum’s 13pt penalty included into their scorelines there was then just nine points separating the two going into the final day.
Super Sunday, the world championship finale delivered tension and drama in equal measure. With the unsettled breeze still in the north, and an uncharacteristically big swell Quantum Racing compounded their problems when they found themselves on the wrong side of one big windshift, to the right, on the first beat of today’s first race.
Azzurra read it best and only had to make one short tack to make the first turn. Quantum had to dig deep and managed to battle back to fifth. But within three races their overall lead was cut to just five points.
Under mounting pressure, not least from within a team known as high achieving perfectionists, Quantum Racing did what they had to, marking Azzurra early after the start.
“It was a nerve wracking day,” Winning tactician Terry Hutchinson admitted, “You know you have to give credit to Azzurra for continually asking the questions, they reeled off three race wins in a row, I can’t say enough about the effort they did to put the pressure on us for our self imposed mistake.”
Azzurra finish runners up despite winning five of the ten races. A weighty 10th place in the second race of the series remains a matter of regret, but was not self inflicted. They were pressed wide at the windward mark by an infringement by another boat, their pedestal winch failed on the run and finally they blew up a spinnaker on the run in to the finish.
The third step on the podium went to Ergin Imre’s Provezza, just as it did in 2015 in Puerto Portals. They had a tough duel with 2013 world champions Rán Racing during the last race showdown but take third just one point.
52 SUPER SERIES – 52 World Championship
1. Quantum Racing, USA (Doug DeVos USA) (2,1,1,2,1,3,2,BFG13,5,5) 35pts
2. Azzurra, ITA (Pablo/Alberto Roemmers ARG) (1,10,7,1,6,7,1,1,1,10) 45pts
3. Provezza, TUR (Ergin Imre TUR) (6,7,3,6,4,1,3,7,10,3) 50pts
4. Rán Racing, SWE (Niklas Zennström SWE) (9,2,2,10,2,2,10,6,2,6) 51pts
5. Bronenosec, RUS (Vladimir Liubomirov RUS) (8,8,9,11,3,4,7,4,8) 65pts
6. Platoon, GER (Harm Müller-Spreer GER) (5,3,5,7,12,8,4,9,7,7) 67pts
7. Alegre, GBR (Andrés Soriano USA) (7,5,6,8,9,12,6,5,8,2) 68pts
8. Gladiator, GBR (Tony Langley GBR) (4,4,10,4,8,11,9,11,12,4) 77pts
9. Phoenix, USA (Richard Cohen USA) (10,9,11,5,10,10,BFG13,3,6,1) 78pts
10. Sled, USA (Takashi Okura USA) (11,11,12,3,7,9,8,2,4,12) 79pts
11. Paprec FRA (Jean-Luc Petithuguenin FRA) (3,DNF/13,8,9,5,5,11,10,9,9) 82pts
12. Sorcha GBR (Peter Harrison GBR) (12,6,4,12,11,6,5,8,11,11) 86pts
52 SUPER SERIES – Overall Standings
After 4 regattas:
1. Quantum Racing, 113 pts
2. Azzurra, 180 pts
3. Rán Racing, 191 pts
4. Provezza, 196 pts
5. Platoon, 207 pts
6. Bronenosec Gazprom, 210 pts
7. Alegre, 225 pts
8. Sled, 232 pts.
9. Gladiator, 283 pts
10. XIO Hurakan, 362 pts
11. Paprec Recyclage, 364.2 pts