For the first time in Europe a GC32 Challenge will find its decision through the exciting match-racing mode. Two spectacular duels for the finals were on the program on saturday.
Adam Minoprio continued proofing his dominance. Norauto Racing headed up to the finals with a solid 3:0 against the Austrian Team PROFS I Youth America’s Cup Team. The teams Engie and Armin Strom performed a tough and exciting fight for the second spot in the finals with no winner at this time. At the standings of 2:2 the decision was postponed to tomorrow.
The teams needed three wins to head up to the first GC32 match-racing final in Europe. everything was served for spectacular head-to-head duels under perfect conditions in the afternoon. With a clear 3:0 against the Austrian team PROFS I Youth America’s Cup, Adam Minoprio made a big step towards his personal lake Traunsee hattrick. He already grinded out two wins in the years before with different teams.
Despite losing the semifinals, the GC32 Alps Challenge is great experience for the underdogs Max Trippolt and team. “We are very thankful receiving the challenge to participate in this great tournament with some of the best sailors in the world. We missed to qualify for the finals clearly, but nobody can take away our experience.” For tomorrows race for the third place Max Trippolt is already motivated again “We don’t know who will be our opponent yet, but it doesn’t matter at all, as both teams are really good. We have to concentrate on our own performance and I’m optimistic that we can surprise if we have good conditions.”
The second semifinal was a real thriller. Team Armin Strom grinded out the better start and already led by 2:0 but team Engie managed to tie the series again. The fifth decisive race will take place on Sunday. The skipper of Team Armin Strom aims to move to the finals thru teamwork. “We were not able to bring the decision after the 2:0 lead. We are a quite fresh team so we had some smaller problems in adjusting to each other. If we handle to enhance our teamwork tomorrow, I’m sure that we are able to fix the finals.”
Match-Up semifinals (Match Race, Best-of-Five):
Norauto Racing Team (1) – PROFS I Youth America’s Cup Team Austria (4) 3:0
Team ENGIE (2) – Armin Strom Sailing Team (3) 2:2*
* Decisive race on Sunday
by Panos Marinopoulos – ICARUS