An action-packed start to the GC32 Racing Tour 2016 last week saw Armin Strom Sailing Team claim a podium finish at an intensely competitive Riva Cup on Lake Garda in Italy.
Placing third behind Team Norauto and Team Tilt was a fantastic result for the young crew who are up against some of the world’s best sailors in this hotly contested series. “My goal for the event was to work on a positive team culture and create some good memories. Our excellent result is the natural reflection of the team energy on board as everyone worked together to give it their all,” says skipper Flavio Marazzi.
The event tested all crews physically and mentally with six races each day in winds ranging between 16 and 20 knots. Mainsheet trimmer and tactician Phil Robertson describes the event as incredible; one of his takeaway highlights was achieving a new speed record for the team with an impressive 37.8 knots.
“It’s one of the most spectacular places in the world to sail with flat water and plenty of wind. We had a great team spirit throughout and the crew work kept improving; both were key to gaining a good result,” he says.
Team manager Sharon Ferris-Choat believed the team handled the conditions well, and for her the most rewarding moments were seeing the crew always crossing the finish line in good spirits.
“The windy conditions meant it was racing at maximum speed with high loads. Testament to how the team sailed safe and handled the pressure each race is that we didn’t miss any races due to damage,” she says.
Flavio believes the team will carry the momentum built during the Riva Cup through to the next event and throughout the series.
“It won’t be easy to maintain the level we achieved this past week, but we’ve shown we have real potential if we work hard and together as a team,” he says.
The next event will be held from 7 – 10 July in Malcesine, also on Lake Garda in Italy, where the GC32 Racing Tour will join The Foiling Week with racing organized by the Fraglia Vela Malcesine.
GC32 Riva Cup Standings
Place / Sail No. / Team
1 FRA 002 Norauto
2 SUI 019 Team Tilt
3 SUI 021 Armin Strom Sailing Team
4 SWE 020 Gunvor Sailing
5 FRA 001 Team Engie
6 FRA 011 Spindrift Racing
7 USA 128 Argo
8 MON 023 Malizia
9 NED 024 Orange Racing
by Armin Strom Sailing Team