Having delivered exciting wind conditions in the past, hopes were high for Act III of the 2016 Extreme Sailing Series in Cardiff and day one did not disappoint, with winds of up to twenty knots blowing across the tight course. There were eight races sailed and it was very much Oman Air’s day, with the team scoring five wins to lead the fleet into day two. Alinghi had a mixed day, but will be greatly encouraged by their performance in race six when, having nailed the start, they maintained the lead until the finish line. More of the same tomorrow, please!
Heading into the final day of Act 2 of the 2016 Extreme Sailing Series in Qingdao, China, Alinghi held a slender lead over their rivals for top spot, Oman Air. After a pulsating day of racing in Fushan Bay, the Swiss team cemented its position and secured their first victory for this year, in the process moving Ernesto Bertarelli's syndicate up to second place overall in the championship. The team knew it would have to come out firing in order to keep Oman at bay and the first race reinforced the point. Eight to ten knots of wind meant that the GC32s could get up on their foils around the stadium course. However, a poor start meant that Alinghi could only manage seventh, while their rivals took the win. An immediate response was required and it was delivered. Race 2 saw the exact inverse of the opener. Alinghi took the front straight from the start and held it to record the first of three wins with Oman back in seventh. By the time the Committee called time on racing because of thick fog, Alinghi's lead was such that even Oman's victory in the double-pointer last race was not enough to overhaul the Swiss. Afterwards, a delighted Arnaud Psarofaghis said: "The team did a fantastic job - they made it easy for me to just helm the boat and be fast. We had a real battle with Oman Air on points. We had a good race, they had a good one, we had a bad one, so did they. Every race was a new race for us. We looked to get the best start possible not think too much about the points. To get up on the foils was great - we made some good gains while flying. We're going to push to be even faster in Cardiff."
Going into day three of Act 2 in Qingdao, Alinghi were defending an overall lead and the team's experience on Lac Leman told. Light wind conditions meant for challenging racing and the team can be delighted to have registered two victories from the six races. After, co-skipper Arnaud Psarofaghis said: “We’re planning on starting well tomorrow and seeing what happens. We just want to stay clear of everyone else and stay fast.” Alinghi's lead at the top of the Act leaderboard is four points from Oman Air. Tomorrow's finale means there is all to play for... Photo Credit: Lloyd Images
On day two of this Extreme Sailing Series Act 2, the whole team welcomed young students from different schools in Qingdao. After this visit to the Alinghi base, the team obviously benefited from their lucky charms, ending the day on top of the leaderboard having scored two wins and a second place from the five races sailed today.
The Extreme Sailing Series Act 2 started today in Qingdao, China, with very light wind conditions allowing only one race to be sailed and that after a 50 minutes postponement. During this race, Alinghi rapidly took the lead and kept it nearly until the end. It was only during the last run, with the winds dying and becoming patchy, that Alinghi were overtaken, falling to third, a position they kept after rounding the bottom gates and crossing the line behind BAR in first and Sail Portugal in second. Photo Credit: Lloyd Images
Act 2 of 2016’s Extreme Sailing Series begins tomorrow in the port of Qingdao, China, to which the teams return for the sixth time and where Alinghi had their epic coming together with Red Bull in 2014. Widely acknowledged to be one of the more challenging of venues, the city’s tall buildings around Fushan Bay make for wildly unpredictable and gusty winds. One thing’s for sure, it won’t be boring. Day one will consist of open water racing, after which the eight teams will move to the stadium for three days of competition that will conclude on Sunday 1st May. The full schedule is: Friday 29 April: 1400-1700 (GMT+8) Saturday 30 April: 1430-1700 (GMT+8) Sunday 1 May: 1430-1700 (GMT+8) Click here to follow the event live
The second day of Act 1 of the 2016 Extreme Sailing Series in Oman began in auspicious conditions, with winds of 18 knots welcoming the teams to the line for the start of racing. However, after three races had been sailed there was a massive shift in the breeze, meaning that the Race Committee brought an end to proceedings for the day. Alinghi fared well in the races that were run, finishing in the top half of the fleet in all as they recorded a third, second and then fourth place finishes. That has left Ernesto Bertarelli’s team tied on points in fourth place with Land Rover BAR Academy and chasing Oman Air who lead the field by 14 points. Alinghi’s improved consistency was a big plus for Co-Skipper Arnaud Psarofaghis, who said: “Yesterday was a tough start for us, but today we were on our game and we are a lot happier with the result. We changed our communication onboard, especially on the starts, and we could see the progress. Although we have experience on the GC32, we can already see the other teams starting to get to grips with it, so we need to ensure we keep improving.” With two more days to sail, the game remains very open... as well as the podium places. Photo Credit:Lloyd Images
Alinghi will be back on the Extreme Sailing Series circuit tomorrow with 3 stadium regattas and a 20 mile Coastal Race between the Old Town of Muscat and the Wave – stay tuned and follow us online or onsite – all useful information are provided here. The crew for this first event will be – Ernesto Bertarelli (Helm), Arnaud Psarofaghis (Main), Nicolas Charbonnier (Tactic), Nils Frei (Trim) & Yves Detrey (Bow). Go Alinghi, Go!
Last weekend marked the end of two weeks of intensive training for Alinghi in Dubai ahead of the Extreme Sailing Series 2016. These two weeks represented a unique occasion to work on crew coordination and to test many different conditions, from marginal flying to full power foiling. It was also the occasion for Arnaud Psarofaghis, one of the most gifted Swiss sailors who has reinforced the ranks of Alinghi as of this year, to spend hours at the helm of Alinghi’s GC32, as he will share this position on board together with team principal Ernesto Bertarelli throughout the 2016 season. Alinghi also welcomed a new team member, Timothé Lapaw, 19, who proved to be fully motivated and an asset for the team thanks to his agility and strength. Pierre-Yves Jorand, who will be coaching the team this season said: “This training session was very positive and productive. The sailing conditions were perfect and we managed to sail a total of thirteen days. In every sense - team work, boat management and tactics - the learning curve was steep, but also enjoyable. We can’t wait for the season to officially start mid-March in Muscat, Oman” Photo credit: Lloyd Images
Ernesto Bertarelli’s Alinghi Team is very pleased to announce that it will be joining the 2016 Extreme Sailing Series, which will be raced on the hydro-foiling GC32 catamarans for the first time. Now in its tenth season, the Extreme Sailing Series is an elite-level competition that brings together some of the world’s best sailors for racing in venues across the globe. The action is always close to the shore, meaning that the thousands of spectators who turn out to watch the teams at each Act are treated to some of the most exhilarating close-quarter sailing that there is on offer anywhere. Alinghi is a veteran of the Extreme Sailing Series, having won the title in 2008 and again in 2014. In 2015 the team raced the GC32 Bullitt Racing Tour and with the ESS adopting that boat for the coming season the decision to go for a third title was an easy one to make. Commenting on the team’s return to the Extreme Sailing Series, Alinghi’s Coach Pierre-Yves Jorand said: “We’re all excited to be going back to the Extreme Sailing circuit. It’s a competition that we know well, of course, and if there’s one thing that we can be certain of it’s that we’re going to be pushed to our best by the many talented teams that are taking part. The racing is always close, it’s always exciting and it’s always supported by great crowds. With the switch to the GC32 this year we are raring to go and hope to bring to bear the invaluable experience we gained about these machines during last year’s racing.” Check our calendar to make sure you don’t miss any venue or date and come visit our news page regularly to stay updated on what is happening during this exciting season.