It’s Vincie again, with Torbole’ at it’s very best…….

International Race Officer.. Paroli Carmelo and his assistant Carla Malauvovia continued their excellent race management to complete three races on the final day in Torbole’…. Making the most of the early Northerly wind with an 8.30am start, Paroli was able to squeeze in two very competitive races before the strong 18-22kt wind died away to allow for the usual Southerly during the sunny Saturday afternoon. Race 1 was dominated by GER 965 helmed by Ingo Ehrlicher who had Olympic Star Sailor, Marc Pickler on board. Marc told me “We had a good start about three boats down from the pin, after a few minutes we were able to tack onto port and cross the fleet. As the wind bent left, we gained and were first to the top mark”. They had a fine lead by the end… in 2nd place was SUI 307 Uli Libor who was having a great race and loving these difficult conditions, also giving it his all was Frank Berg who deserved his 3rd place, still suffering from his terrible bad luck the previous day….

In race 2, both Vincie Hoesch and Valdemar Bandalowski DEN 403 picked a good lane from the middle of the line, when they tacked onto port they were both lifted up the centre of the lake and rounded the top mark 1st and 2nd respectively, just before a right-hand shift. But DEN 403 was black flagged, so Valdemar did not count, that allowed Uli Libor SUI 307 who was rellishing these testing conditions to record another 2nd place, well sailed Uli. 3rd place was GER 965 who sailed very well again in this stronger wind, to follow up his win.

Lunch was taken between 12.00 – 2pm as the wind did its usual trick of reversing from North to South, and so the 3rd & final race of the Championship was started around 2.30, in glorious sunshine with around 6-8kts of breeze. With a lead of 4pts Vincie only had to watch out for GER 10 Marcus Brennecke, to that end he tailed him down the line during the final minutes prior to the start….watching his every move. Tim Tavinor made a good start along with newcomer from the Etchell’s Fleet, James Howells helming GBR 769 Hombre’… and were the lead boats into the left shore. Meanwhile Vincie had waited for Marcus to tack onto port, he then slammed in a “cover tack”, right on top of his nearest rival…  game over.  It was enough to not only take the wind out of Marcus’ sails, but also dishearten this excellent team who had pushed Vincie all the way! At the winward mark, GBR 769 was just able to tack in front of Timmy and were the first crew to raise their bright red spinnaker…….  James and his crew managed to hold onto their lead and give the delighted Hombre’ team their first International win, also squeezing them into the top 10 overall.  Whilst Tim Tavinor helming HUN 57 held onto 2nd place thus helping Tim, Thomas and Nicky Wilton to a very deserved 4th overall…

So it was that GER 1 Vincie Hoesch, crewed by Peter Liebner and Thomas Mayer took the Trophy for yet another year, well done boy’s for this great achievement. In 2nd place was GER 10 Marcus Brennecke, with Werner Fritz and Thomas Auracher as his top crew. Followed by RUS 76 in 3rd, this time helmed by Igor Giohberg, but crewed as usual by the biggest man in Russia Aleksey Bushuev and certainly the top tactician the Dragon Fleet have seen in many years, Andrey Kirilyuk.  Andrey originally took RUS 27 Anatoly Loginov to extreme hights, before now doing the same with Dmitry Samokhin in RUS 76..  Andrey may not be right all the time, but he has this amazing ability to not often be wrong !!!

In closing I would like to congratulate Gianfranco Tonelli and his amazing team of helpers at the Circolo Vela Torbole’… For the whole event. From the Launching to the Recovery, from the Race Course to the Pasta Parties and from the Italian hospitality to the Final Goodbye’s… It’s a “full-on” adventure in a breathtaking part of the world…  Well done…

Higher, Faster, Longer…………    Stavros (NED 411).

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