Thursday, April 05, 2007

Alinghi leads after 3 races

Following Tuesday’s light airs opening race in the Louis Vuitton Act 13 series, Wednesday got off to a cracking start with a brisk 15 knot breeze. America’s Cup holder Alinghi, steered by American Ed Baird won, with Desafío España steered by Karol Jablonski of Poland 2nd and Emirates Team NZ , helmed by Britain’s Ben Ainslie in 3rd. The third race of the series started just minutes after the last boat (China Team) had finished. In 14 knots of wind, Mascalzone led for much of the first leg, slipping to third as Alinghi and BMW Oracle came through.

Confusion at the windward mark led to the dismasting of +39 following an incident with United Internet Team Germany and Areva, the French yacht. Alinghi wins again, followed by Luna Rossa, steered by Australian James Spithill. Desafío España was 3rd, despite being over the line at the start and having to go back. Desafío is clearly a boat to watch out for in this series.

After three races, the leader board looks like this:

Alinghi 33
BMW Oracle 27
Emirates Team NZ 27
Desafío España 26
Luna Rossa 25
Mascalzone 25

Five teams with just two points between them – This is shaping up to be a great series. Thursday looks like bringing rain and more light winds, so there could be further upsets before Saturday’s final race!
Mike O'Neill

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