Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Malcesine RC 44 Cup starts tomorrow

[Source: RC44] The fourth regatta of the RC 44 Championship Tour 2009 starts tomorrow on Lake Garda. The RC 44 fleet welcomes Frank Pong and his new Team Jelik, from Hong Kong. DHL, the Class’ logistics partner, announces that around 16 tons of CO2 have been compensated thanks to their innovative GoGreen campaign.

Fifteen knots of wind, great sunshine and flat water: those are the conditions that the ten teams involved in the Malcesine RC 44 Cup hope to get this week. Lake Garda is situated about 65 metres above sea level between the Alps and the Po plain; it is the largest lake in Italy. The northern part of the lake is surrounded by mountainous peaks that create a funnel effect and generate the local winds – the Ora between midday and the early hours of the evening and the Vento between midnight and mid-morning.

Frank Pong’s Team Jelik sailing for the first time in the RC44 championship Tour, with Adam Minoprio calling tactics. Malcesine, 7 July 2009. Photo copyright Nico Martinez

Organised by Fraglia Vela di Malcesine, the regatta begins tomorrow with the match racing event. Winner of the last regatta and leader of the Championship Tour, Chris Bake’s Team Aqua with Cameron Appleton at the helm is one of the favourites of the series, alongside Torbjorn Tornqvist / Dean Baker’s Artemis and Larry Ellison / Russell Coutts’ BMW ORACLE Racing, who won the match race event in Malcesine last year. Also to be reckoned with, Maciej Nawrocki and Karol Jablonski’s team Organika, second of the match race event in Austria last month and Igor Lah / Sébastien Col’s Ceeref.

The fleet regatta will take place from Friday 10 till Sunday 12. The long distance regatta - the DHL Trophy - will count for double; it will most probably take place on Saturday.

The ten RC 44’s have been training hard over the past days. This morning, Frank Pong’s Team Jelik, who join the Class for the first time, had a first “lake trial” with 20+ knots of wind. “Now I understand why everybody says that Lake Garda is such a fantastic place for sailing”, said Pong. “It was absolutely awesome.”

The teams involved:
(Name of team, owner, pro sailor)

Team Aqua, Chris Bake / Cameron Appleton
Team Ceeref, Igor Lah / Sébastien Col
Sea Dubai, Yousef Lahej, DIMC / Markus Wieser
BMW ORACLE Racing, Larry Ellison / Russell Coutts
Team Organika, Maciej Nawrocki / Karol Jablonski
Puerto Calero Islas Canarias, Daniel Calero / Jose Maria Ponce
Artemis, Torbjorn Tornqvist / Dean Barker
No Way Back, Pieter Heerema / Ray Davies
Team Austria, René Mangold / Christian Binder
Team Jelik, Frank Pong / Adam Minoprio

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