Magnificent Last Day in Kuhlungsborn….

111Overall winners GER 1157 “M3″ helmed by Michael Schmidt, with Malte Philipp & Mario Wagner.

It was an unbelievable final day in Kuhlungsborn as the disappointment of Friday’s lack of wind was soon forgotten by the 41 boat fleet. The early fog lifted shortly after midday and as the sun broke through the wind turned to the north. So the flat water and shifting south easterly winds enjoyed by the sailors on Thursday were replaced by short deep waves providing excellent surfing opportunities down wind whilst testing helms and crews upwind.

Race 4 of the series started under a “U” flag and three boats were identified as early starters. However, boats starting down the pin end of the line had a small advantage and UAE 9, GER 11 and UAE 8 all sailed extremely well to be the main contenders at the top of the first 1.7 mile upwind leg. In order to get two races completed it had been agreed to finish the race on the 2nd downwind leg and it was UAE 8 who eventually passed GER 11 & UAE 9 to take the victory.

1122Winners of Race 4, UAE 8  Yevgeni Braslavets, Sergey Timokhov & Oleksandr Myrchuk.

With the overall result wide open the final race started at 2.10pm as the wind increased to 17 – 20 kts making a fantastic finale to this competitive Grade 1 event. This time the race was dominated by GER 11 helmed by Marcus Brenneke who had “Olympian” Jochen Schumann & North Sails Theis Palm on board to help him power through the waves and extend their lead.

1133Winners of Race 5, GER 11 Marcus Brenneke, Jochen Schumann & Theis Palm.

However, it was GER 1157 helmed by Michael Schmidt who battled hard to stay in touch with GER 11 to finish 2nd and take the overall Championship by the smallest of margins. The victorious “M3″ team finished on equal points with UAE 8, so on “count back” both had a 1st and a 2nd, so the tie was decided on GER 1157 having a 4th, whilst UAE 8 had a 5th. How close can it be ? Quite amazing. So many congratulations to Michael Schmidt, Malte Philipp and Mario Wagner.

The Corinthian winners with a very strong performance was DEN 411 “African Queen” helmed by Jorgen Schonherr who actually finished a very creditable 5th in the overall standings.

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Corinthian Winners DEN 411 Jorgen Schonherr, Thomas Schmidt & Christian Videbaek.

This superb Grade 1 event  was well organised by the Segelclub Kuhlungsborn e.v. It had excellent race management orchestrated by IRO Christian Haake,  fantastic “apres” sail parties, a wonderful marina and 5 top quality races despite losing two days to lack of wind…

Final Results.    1st GER 1157  15pts.    2nd  UAE 8  15pts.   3rd GER 11  17pts.  4th RUS 27  17pts      5th DEN 411  19pts     6th UAE 7   22pts

Many thanks once again for all these amazing photo’s from Ricardo Pinto.

Higher, Faster, Longer……….      Stavros.   (on board the Committee Boat).

 

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Kuhlungsborn Comes Alive!

13497852_692263624245345_8485798446603285295_oUAE 8 “Bunker Boys” helmed by our World Champion Yvgeni Braslavets, crosses the fleet.

Day 2 of the German Grand Prix in Kuhlungsborn provided wonderful sailing conditions yesterday as 41 teams enjoyed 3 top quality races in perfect conditions.  A south-easterly wind that ranged between 6 to 10 kts and a flat sea, allowed for important tactical decisions & close boat to boat manoeuvres.

13483075_691763497628691_5675501685447895203_oThree Races with Three “Clear” Starts, organised by our excellent IRO Christian Hacki.

After a disappointing first day of no racing through lack of wind, it was so nice to complete three full races with the “traditional” course of three up wind and two down wind legs. Race 1 started at 12.00 and the fleet split left and right, GER 1157 “M 3″ helmed by Michael Schmidt went nearly all the way to the left, whilst GER 33 “Sinewave” helmed by Tommy Muller chose the right side of the 1.6 mile beat. At the top mark GER 1157 was just able to squeeze in front of GER 33 proving that there was no “favoured” side of the course and this was the story all day on this excellent race track.

13528384_692264057578635_7167190817688104346_oWinners of Race 1 GER 1157, Michael Schmidt, Maltie Phillip and Mario Wagner.

In race 2 the wind became a little more shifty which meant which ever team responded first after a good start made a good “jump” on their competitors. This time it was former European Champions POR 66 “Drago” helmed by Jose Matoso who seized the initiative and held a comfortable lead at the top mark. Although Jose’ was challenged strongly by DEN 411 Jorgen Schonherr, POR 66 held on to the end to win the race.

13497966_692264120911962_5611095904885886215_oWinners of Race 2 POR 66 “Drago” Jose’ Matoso, Gustavo Lima and Frederico Melo.

With the conditions staying almost perfect it was decided to hold a 3rd race which all 41 teams really enjoyed after the frustration of the previous day. This time it was RUS 27 “Annapurna” helmed by Anatoloy Loginov who caught every shift just right and held a slender lead at the top of the course. This lead was extended as the race continued and Anatoloy explained to me afterwards ” We had the opportunity to tack on every shift first, this meant we could make even more gains and pull away from the fleet”.

13502817_692264987578542_8303033497305385803_oWinners of Race 3 RUS 27 “Annapurna” Anatoly Loginov, Vadim Statsenko & Alexander Shaligin.

The top Corinthian Teams were DEN 411 “African Queen” Jorgen Schonherr in races 1 & 2. Then GER 1103 “Rosie” helmed by Benny Morgan had a fantastic showing in the final race to finish in 2nd place. Benny and his Father Dr Karl Morgan usually winter their boat down in Cascais, Portugal and this extra sailing and experience really helps when defending a great position against the very best sailors in the world :-)

Today we hope for another 3 races which will get this final Grade 1 event of 2106 back on track as we hope to provide a total of 8 races with 1 discard.

Higher, Faster, Longer………….    Stavros.  (On Committee Boat).

 

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Jens Christensen Wins Marblehead Trophy.

MH1DEN 410 Jens Christensen holds the wonderful Trophy, with Kim Andersen & Rene Villefrance.

The 2016 Marblehead Trophy has been won by Jens Christensen representing the Royal Danish Yacht Club , crewed by Kim Andersen & Rene Villefrance. After holding a slender overnight lead of just 1 point, Jens and his top team secured the championship with a further 3rd and 2nd place today.

Moving up to 2nd place overall was the experienced German team representing Bayerischer Yacht Club sailing GER 11, helmed by Marcus Brenneke, crewed by Jochen Schumann & Theis Palm. Marcus scored a 1st, 5th & 2nd today to finish just 1 point behind the winners on 14 points.

MH22nd Overall, GER 11 Marcus Brenneke, Multiple Olympic Champion Jochen Schumann & Theis Palm.

The final “Podium” position went deservedly to 14 year old Oscar Hendriksen sailing with his Dad Lars Hendriksen in his DEN 138 “Eva”, also crewed by Lars Stenfeldt. This remarkable young man, helming a Dragon for the very first time, pushed all the experienced sailors to the limit.. This outstanding result is a true “inspiration” for young sailors all over the world and I am sure Mum and Dad will be very proud of their son “Oscar” tonight !!  :-)

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3rd overall of the 2016 Marblehead Trophy, Oscar Hendriksen, with Lars & Lars :-)

4th place overall and having a very good final day with two 1st places was POR 66 “Drago” helmed by Jose’ Matoso, crewed by Gustavo Lima & Frederico Melo. In 5th was the defending Champion and principle sponsor Jorgen Schonherr DEN 411 “African Queen” crewed by Christen Videbaek & Thomas Schmidt. Jorgen passed on the Marblehead Trophy to Jens to defend in 2017.

This was an extremely well organised and enjoyed event and a fine example of the best experienced “Professionals” going head to head against the young “Champions” of tomorrow…..

Higher, Faster, Longer…………….    Stavros.

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New Leaders at the Marblehead Trophy…

Oscar2 Winners of race 3 DEN 410, Jens Christensen with Kim Andersen & Rene Villefrance.

1 more race was completed in the 2016 Marblehead Trophy today, before the light wind died altogether.  But this was enough for Jens Christensen DEN 410 “Out of Bounce”, representing the KDY (Royal Danish Yacht Club) to take the overall lead by just 1pt from overnight leader Oscar Hendriksen.

Jens told me “We were confident of our speed despite the light winds. However, one our main competitors, 14 year old Oscar Hendriksen helming DEN 138 “Eva” was right behind us at the first windward mark. We just managed to wriggle out of a tight situation when the wind died to win the race. Although Oscar had some bad luck to finish 7th, but it is still wide open for tomorrow with 3 more races planned”.

Oscar

Oscar Hendriksen with Lars Stenfeldt & Dad in the background are just 1pt behind leaders!

In 3rd place overall is GER 11 helmed by Marcus Brenneke, crewed by the great Olympian Jochen Schumann and top Professional Theis Palm. This well experienced team are representing “Bayerishcher Yacht Club” (BYC) and will certainly be giving their best to challenge for this prestigious trophy tomorrow..

Current Overall Standings   1st  DEN 410  8pts.  2nd  DEN 138  9pts.  3rd GER 11 15pts.

So it’s all on tomorrow!  Which team will take this magnificent trophy back to their home club and hold the right to defend it in 2017…. ?????

Higher, Faster, Longer…….     come on “Oscar”    :-)      Stavros.

 

 

 

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Oscar is the “Marblehead Man” !!

13239344_1300361319992635_6566734832895621204_n (2)Oscar Hendriksen wins both races on Day 1 of the 2016 Marblehead Trophy, in Denmark. :-)

14 year old Oscar Hendriksen, representing Fueroeso Yacht Club, (on a small lake north-west of Copenhagen), where he normally races the Zoom 8 dinghy, has won the first two races of the famous Marblehead Trophy. Oscar told me “It was great fun to race a bigger boat and this was my first race win. My Dad gave me lots of encouragement and my Mum is very proud of me”. So are we all Oscar…well done.

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Challenges were received from many Top International Teams representing 15 different Yacht Clubs, this 2016  event is sponsored and supported by the current holder Jorgen Schonherr of Wellness “Technogym”.

Tommy-awards-trophyHere we see Jorgen Schonherr receiving the Marblehead Trophy from Germany’s Tommy Muller. Tommy held the trophy for many years before losing it to Jorgen in 2014…

So now the “Challenge” is on to see which team can win the trophy and proudly return home to their designated Yacht Club so that they become the “Hosts” for 2017…  An amazing honour for any sailor, but if it could be won by DEN 138 “EVA” with Oscar Hendriksen at the helm & his Father Lars, with best friend Lars Stenfelt as the 3rd crew, it would be a “Fairy Tale” for sure.

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And fellow sailors when you believe……. Sometimes “Dreams” come true :-)

Higher, Faster, Longer…..  Oscar..                  Stavros.

Top 3 Boats after 2 Races…

1st  Oscar Hendriksen   DEN 138 “EVA”    2pts

2nd Jens Christensen DEN 410 “Out of Bounce” 7pts.

3rd Grant Gordon GBR 758 “Fever” 9pts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Final Results from La Baule.

1Winners FRA 365 “Ar Youleg” Christian Guyader, Frederic Denis & Gwen Chapalain.

Two more races were sailed on the final day in the Derby Dragon La Baule, in a light and shifting northerly breeze and flat water. As the wind filtered through the houses onto the water it was a difficult race course to read although it was the left hand side that paid most of the time.

DRONEThe Dragons leave the Marina of La Baule to prepare for the final races of Derby Dragon.

The first race of the day was won by GBR 633 ” Fei-lin Flirtation” helmed by Ron James and his Wife Julia and Ian Turnbull. This was the second victory for this team and a great result for Ron and Julia who are always travelling across Europe supporting the Dragon Circuit in their beautiful wooden Borresen Cold Moulded Dragon.. well done.

The second race of the day was won by FRA 365 “Ar Youleg” helmed by Christian Guyader, this victory gave this top French team the Championship, winning on countback from FRA 391 “Ulysse” helmed by Jean Breger.

2Runners Up, FRA 391 “Ulysse” Gaetan Aunette, Christian Gout & helm Jean Breger.

Finishing in 3rd place overall was my team in GBR 789 “Bear”, crewed by Dominic and Olivier Bakker. Although slightly disappointed to loose our overall lead on the final day, we were beaten by two excellent French Teams so many congratulations to Christian and Jean…

33rd place overall GBR 789 “Bear” Dominic & Olivier Bakker with Martin Payne.

Top Corinthian Team finishing in an excellent 5th place overall was FRA 404 “Poulico” sailed by Emmanuel Lafosse, Francois Laborde & Philippe Ballanger. This team from Arcachon put some consistent scores together and to finish in the top 5 was excellent, well done.

AAAATop Corinthians, FRA 404 “Poulico” Emmanuel Lafosse, Francois Laborde & Philippe Ballanger.

One of the longest supporters of the Derby Dragon is Edward Simmons from America. Ed has been coming to La Baule for over 8 years and was awarded a special prize for his loyalty to the event…

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FRA 334 “Avel Dro” Edward Simmons with Didier & Peter Jeffery (7th overall).

So the 2016 Derby Dragon comes to the end and a great time was had by all. The Yacht Club La Baule always provide first class entertainment, great races and are simply one of the friendliest clubs you could ever visit. My thanks to all the Committee, Organisers and Volunteers, led superbly by President Dominique Molett.  Long live La Baule :-)

Higher, Faster, Longer………..   Stavros.   (GBR 789).

 

 

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Fantastic Conditions in La Baule…

LBIDA Vice Chairman Stephane Baseden FRA 420, leads the 37 boat fleet around the top mark in race 3.

Three more excellent races were completed yesterday at the Derby Dragon La Baule in near perfect conditions. With a consistent 15 to 18 kts of northerly wind and a blue sky, it was just what the Doctor ordered for the 37 competing teams. The early “pace setters” in race 3 of the series were FRA 420 “Outlaw” & FRA 207  “Q Ti Too” but in the end after the two upwind and two downwind legs, it was FRA 365 “Ar Youleg” who took the victory.

In the second race of the day, race 4 of the series, a great fight was had between FRA 391 “Ulysse” and GBR 789 “Bear”, with never more than a boat length between them… In the end it was GBR 789 “Bear” who just got the inside line at the final gate to take the win.

LB2A good start at the pin end for FRA 207 “Q Ti Too” helmed by Fred Gourlaouen.

In the final race of the day it was again FRA 391 “Ulysse” who charged up the middle of the course to take the early lead…this time helm Jean Breger held on to deservedly take the winning gun as the course was shortened at the top of the 2nd beat to allow the fleet time to get safely back into the harbour as the tide was ebbing quickly.

LB3GBR 797 “Anarchy” fights hard on the “dog leg” with FRA 411 “Bonn Pomme”.

Special mention must go to two “older” dragons who are both currently laying in the top 10 overall. GBR 586 “Scorpio” owned and helmed by Ian Grey is in 10th position sailing his Petticrows built in 1992. Whilst in 8th position overall is the amazingly well kept GRB 515 “Basilisk” owned and helmed by Pattrick Gifford. This Borresen was built in the late 1980’s and is still as quick as ever…It’s super to see these vintage boats go so well against the new.

LB4So here are the overall standings after 5 races , hopefully 2 more races today to finish.

Higher, Faster, Longer…………    Stavros.  (GBR 789).

 

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2 Races in Derby Dragon, La Baule.

LaStartThe start of Race 1 for the 37 Dragons in La Baule.. Light winds, but fun, fun, fun.

The 2016 Derby Dragon began yesterday after a cancelled first day on Sunday, so the 37 teams enjoyed 2 very good light wind races. With a strong flood tide it was possible to “Lee Bow” the current off the start line which helped starboard tacking boats to clear the line. However, boats that tacked early on to port and crossed the fleet lost pressure as they neared the shore, so the big gain came from the left.  One of these “left hand side” boats was GBR 633 helmed by Ron James, crewed by his wife Julia and Ian Turnbull, who sailed really well making the most of their opportunities and won the race.

DollyGBR 633 “Feelings Flirtation” Ron James, Julia and Ian win race 1 of the Derby Dragon.

In race 2 the wind was a little more settled and it paid to start at the committee boat, tack immediately and head for the shore. This is exactly what FRA 365 “Ar Youleg” did, helmed by Christian Guyader, crewed by Gwen Chapalain and Claude Bertrac.  This experienced crew made the most of more pressure created by the land and led the fleet from start to finish.

LaBaule2A Langoustine managed to escape Sunday’s party held in La Baule, but only for a while!

Today will see at least 3 races with boats leaving the harbour at 10am. The forecast shows 15 to 20 kts, so it will be a “full on” day of racing which will match the “full on” social programme in this unique and popular town.. :-)

Higher, Faster, Longer…….     Stavros.   (GBR 789).

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Langoustines in La Baule….

LaBauleThe La Baule Ladies prepare the delicious Langoustines for the lucky Sailors.

The first day of the 2016 Derby Dragon in La Baule was unfortunately cancelled yesterday through lack of wind, but that did not dampen the spirits of the 40 Dragon Teams who enjoyed a great lunch at the Y.C.L.B.

LaBaule4President Dominique Molett & the Committee of Y.C.L.B. “Open” the 2016 Derby Dragon.

Today the improved forecast will allow this popular and extremely well supported regatta to get underway with 3 or possibly 4 races…This wonderful town on the west coast of France always brings a smile to the sailors faces and not even the French “Fuel” strike could keep away the many travelling teams :-)

LaBaule1The Dragons lay safely “side by side” in the shelter of the La Baule Harbour.

More news and results to follow over the next 3 days……….

Higher, Faster, Longer……           Stavros.  (GBR 789).

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Kuhlungsborn….. Final Grade 1 of 2016.

kühlungsbornfromabove-1024x682Kuhlungsborn, Germany. Venue of the last Grade 1 event of 2016. June 22nd to 25th.

With over 30 boats already registered for the Dragon Grand Prix Germany, this final Grade 1 regatta of 2016 will be another well supported International Regatta. After hosting such a successful Gold Cup in 2015, many happy sailors will be returning to this popular venue that offers so much.

From it’s very well organised and modern Marina it is just a short time to the non tidal and unrestricted race area…  No ferries, no obstructions and hardly any pleasure craft make sailing on these deep blue waters of the Baltic Sea a real joy. The race management and “apres” sail is extremely well co-ordinated whilst family members and partners can relax on the large, soft sanded, golden beaches :-)

Kuhlungsborn..The wonderful beaches that offer a great view of the racing in Kuhlungsborn, Germany.

The Segelclub Kuhlungsborn e.V. are looking forward to welcoming their usual sailors and more importantly any new teams to their friendly club. Check out the web site on the IDA Home Page for more information..

So why not consider a trip to this beautiful part of Germany and join the fun and excitement ? You will not be disappointed….

Higher, Faster, Longer……    Stavros.

 

 

 

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