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RC44 Marstrand Cup – Team Nika to regain first place

With one day of racing left at the RC44 Marstrand Cup on Sweden’s west coast, the two Vladimirs’ teams are vying for the lead. This morning Vladimir Liubomirov’s Bronenosec Sailing Team was ahead by a mere point, an opening race win for Vladimir Prosikhin caused his Team Nika to regain first place, holding on to it until disaster struck towards the end of the last race, resulting Liubomirov recovering first.

Currently Bronenosec leads Team Nika by four points, but with three races scheduled tomorrow, any of the top six boats in theory still can win.

After finishing fourth in today’s second race, Team Nika was lining up for a podium finish in race three until the last run towards the finish line in Marstrand Fjord, when what Prosikhin described as “a catalogue of disasters” unfolded: A genniker twist developed during a gybe and with a boat immediately to leeward Team Nika was unable to bear away to unwind it.

Eventually they sorted it out, but Prosikhin then gybed in front of Peninsula Petroleum and bore away too early resulting in the two boats touching.

Nico Poons’ Charisma got her second bullet of the series in race two. This largely came about through a good fast start by the committee boat. “Straight away we were a length ahead of the fleet,” said tactician Ray Davies. “From there it is a lot easier – we just tried to keep it really simple and let the boat do its job. We sailed clean all the way around the track, but life’s a lot easier when you are in front.”

RC44 Marstrand Cup - Team Nika to regain first placeLike Team Nika, Charisma’s final race was disappointing, finishing seventh after a broach on the second to last gybe as the westerly wind built to 20 knots.

The last race today saw the RC44 Marstrand Cup get its sixth individual winner in Chris Bake’s Team Aqua – with Swede Richard Goransson helming on this occasion.

With Andy Horton off on paternity leave, tactician this week is British America’s Cup helmsman Chris Draper, sailing his first ever RC44 regatta.

“Everybody is super smart,” says Draper of the racing. “If you bleed a few lengths, then you’re history! As a whole, the standard is insanely high. The guys at the front, drive the boats bloody well – anybody would struggle to beat them.”

Tomorrow, the last day of the RC44 Marstrand Cup,

RC44 Marstrand Cup Results after Thursday
1. Bronenosec Sailing Team (RUS 18) 3 3 5 1 3 3 6 2 2 28pts
2. Team Nika (RUS 10) 5 1 1 2 2 8 1 4 8 32pts
3. Charisma (MON 69) 2 2 4 10 1 5 4 1 7 36pts
4. Peninsula Petroleum Sailing Team (GBR 1) 4 6 6 5 5 1 2 3 5 37pts
5. Artemis Racing (SWE44) 1 5 2 3 9 2 3 5 10 40pts
6. Team Aqua (GBR 2041) 10 10 3 6 7 4 5 6 1 52pts
7. Artemis Racing Youth (SWE 4) 7 4 7 4 8 9 7 10 4 60pts
8. Katusha (RUS 21) 6 8 11 9 6 6 8 7 3 64pts
9. RUS – 7 Anywayanyday (RUS 7) 8 9 8 7 4 7 11 9 9 72pts
10. MAG Racing (POL 44) 9 7 9 8 10 10 9 8 6 76pts

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