Saturday, March 6, 2010

Battle of the titans at St. Maarten Heineken Regatta opener

March 5, 2010, Simpson Bay, St. Maarten – After an extremely close, tactical, race on the opening day of the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, Tom and Dotty Hill’s custom Reichel/Pugh 75 – Titan 15, managed to hold off George David’s Reichel/Pugh 90 Rambler and Irvine Laidlaw’s Wally 82 Highland Fling to take top spot in the St Maarten Round the Island Race.

Peter Isler and team aboard this stunning new, ultra lightweight racing machine enjoyed an extremely testing 32nm race round the island of St Maarten in unusually light, southerly winds which only reached 12kts at best. They engaged in an early bow-to-bow battle with Rambler and Highland Fling from the start and, although Rambler soon powered off in the building gusts on the first spinnaker leg to the western most point of the island, Titan and Highland Fling were always snapping at her heels.

The tactical part of the race for all classes really began in Marigot Bay where choice of headsails was critical. Isler chatting about the race said: “We went with the jib top which is a bit smaller, tighter angle combination and the other two went with spinnakers and a Code Zeros. For a while our combination was better but behind the lee of the island it got quite light. We were headed on starboard tack reach first then when we got to the middle of the bay it started lifting and the Code Zero started to pay which allowed us to overtake Highland Fling.” READ MORE...