Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A Memorable Performance by MarazziSailing:

Photos by M Costa

Photo by Jürg Kaufmann www.go4image.com
Despite a Torn Spinnaker, 7th Place Reached

MarazziSailing made an impressive performance at the Audi MedCup Practice Race in Alicante: despite starting problems and a torn spinnaker, Flavio Marazzi and his team had an advance of 11 seconds over the America’s Cup winner Russell Coutts(Artemis) in the end.

For the first time at the TP52 Audi MedCup 2009, a Swiss team, MarazziSailing, sailing under the Swiss flag (Gstaad Yacht Club) was present at the start. With Flavio Marazzi (helmsman), Enrico De Maria (grinder) and Christian «Blumi» Scherrer (trimmer), three Swiss are on board. This trio is reinforced by other top sailors from 7 nations, led by the three-times Olympic Games and AC winner Jochen Schümann (Germany).

In the first official training round, MarazziSailing stood out and gained a 2nd place. Again, at the Practice Race, the team maintained its performance, although not everything went as planned. At the start, the Swiss were forced aside by the Emirates Team New Zealand and were at the field’s end. But the team fought back and started a catch-up race. In the end, they obtained a well-deserved 7th place – despite a torn spinnaker at the first down wind. Peter Erzberger, President of Gstaad Yacht Club, says proudly: “The world’s best sailors are starting here. That why you cannot overestimate the team’s performance.”

The Swiss thus decided the second direct comparison with the Artemis Team Artemis in their favour, too. MarazziSailing is sailing last year’s Artemis type, the Swedish team around Russel Coutts is on the waves with a new boat.

Thanks to the great America’s Cup pause, the “Who is Who” of sailing is at the start. These are the most famous personalities apart from the three-times AC winner Russell Coutts (Artemis): MedCup title defender Terry Hutchinson (USA, Quantum), Louis Vuitton Cup winner Dean Barker (NZL, Emirates Team New Zealand) and AC sailor Magnus Holmberg (Sd, Audi TP52 Sailing Team powered by Q8). Additionally, helmsman Flavio Marazzi will meet a few competitors from the Olympic Star class: Mark Mendelblatt (USA, Quantum) participates as well as Iain Percy (Gb, Cristabella), Ross Macdonald (Ka, Bribon) or Hamish Pepper (NZL, Artemis). Even the king of Spain, H.M. Juan Carlos de Borbón, is part of the show as the skipper of Bribon – and he won in the Practice Race.

Practice Race Ranking (12 boats): 1. Bribon (Spain, H.M. Juan Carlos) 59:25 minutes. 2. Bigamist 7 (Por, Alfonso Domingo) 00:50. 3. Emirates Team New Zealand (Dean Barker) 01:36. 4. Matador (Arg, Guillermo Parada) 1:42. 5. Quantum Racing (USA, Terry Hutchinson) 02:07. 6. Pisco Sur (Chile, Vasco Vascotti) 02:48. 7. Team MarazziSailing Switzerland (Flavio Marazzi) 03:09. 8. Artemis Sweden (Russell Coutts) 03:20. 9. Synergy (Russia, Sergey Pichugin) 03:27. 10. El Desafio (Spain, Laureano Winzer) 03:33. 11. Valars III (Russia, Chevtsov Serguei) 03:36. 12. Audi TP52 powered by Q8 (Italy, Magnus Holmberg) 03:40.
Did not start: Cristabella (Gb, Iain Percy).