x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

Resounding win for Team Sea Dubai

Team Sea Dubai were crowned winners of the six-event RC44 Championship Tour's opening round at Dubai International Marine Club.

DUBAI // Team Sea Dubai were crowned winners of the six-event RC44 Championship Tour's opening round at Dubai International Marine Club yesterday, despite flagging winds limiting the session's races. Sailing-worthy breezes of six-to-seven knots did not sweep across the Arabian Gulf until two-and-a-half hours after the scheduled start, halving the competition time and forcing the cancellation of two races.

But having gone undefeated in five head-to-head races on Monday, Team Sea Dubai, who sat out yesterday's first race, edged closest challengers Team Artemis in flight two to reach six points and clinch a resounding series win. "At least the teams completed two races," said the Team Sea Dubai skipper, Markus Wieser. "The first one, when we were on standby, was OK and the second flight was fine until the end when the breeze dropped down.

"We've won already because we are two points ahead of Artemis and we've beaten them - that was very important. Now, even if we lose the final two flights, we can't be passed. It doesn't matter what we do now [today], but we'll go out and sail as well as possible to be fair to the other teams." At present, four of the nine identical RC44s crews sit on three points. However, with eight flights scheduled, some boats have completed six races and others seven. In the interests of fair play, Bertrand Favre, the RC44 class manager, insisted the matches must be finished.

"It is always disappointing when you cannot finish the schedule on time," Favre said. "OK, we have a winner, but with five boats on three points it is difficult. We need one more race, hopefully two, for a fair result and final standings. Luckily we have an extra buffer day." @Email:emegson@thenational.ae