A win apiece for Jonathan Lobert (FRA) and Mark Andrews (GBR) on a shifty second day at the Trofeo S.A.R. Princesa Sofía MAPFRE in Palma de Mallorca leaves Lobert leading the fleet by one point from Giles Scott (GBR).
There was slightly less wind than on Monday, building to 17-18 knots during the day, However, it was quite shifty with big right phases in the breeze. The big waves left over from Monday at an angle to the wind also made the downwind quite tricky.
In race three Lobert took his second race win of the week from Zbogar and Mills. Scott explained the race, “The leaders came out of the right. Up the second windward leg wind oscillated until the final quarter of the leg where a sizeable righty came in with Vasilij making the best of it to catch the leaders.” Scott maintained second overall with a fifth place finish
For the second race the wind picked up to about 17 knots. Scott, “At the start in the final minute to go there was a 15 degree shift to the left making the pin very biased which wasn't ideal for those of us at the committee boat. Up the first windward leg the wind went further left, and all the leaders came from reasonably hard left. I found myself having to battle back from about 30th at the top. But Vasilij Zbogar and Andrew Mills did the best with the conditions today.”
“I had one of those days where I made things difficult resulting in some fraught on the back foot racing.” He eventually recovered to score another fifth place to stay in second overall.
Race four winner Mark Andrews said, “My starts so far this week have been worse than rubbish but eventually I got a good start at the pin end. Just before the start there was a big shift to the left and I was able to tack and cross most of the fleet. The Croatian got tangled at the pin but recovered well and took a big shift and pressure from the left and rounded the top mark in first ahead of me.”
“Down the run I had a good battle between the Croatian [Milan Vujasinovic (CRO)] and Josh Junior. These Laser sailors have taken to the pumping downwind quite well and have got some pace. I think we were all blowing pretty hard by the bottom mark.”
“On the second beat I was first into the left hand shift and was able to stretch out a lead from Josh from there. Vasilij had a amazing second run and to take second, his second of the day. His training over in Valencia has obviously gone well.”
“Obviously it was great to get a 0 point race under my belt, as my Finn sailing is a bit rusty from sailing a Figaro all winter with the Artemis offshore academy.”
“So far two days of champagne Finn sailing in Palma.”
Andrews' win moves him up to seventh, while Zbogar and Mills picked up another second and third place to end the day third and fourth overall
Max Salminen (SWE) is sailing his first major Finn regatta since winning the Star gold medal at last year's Olympics. “My main focus this year is performing well at the Worlds. But there's a long time until then so I think Palma will tell me more in what areas I need to focus until the Worlds. The hardest part so far has been funding. In the boat it took some time to get the free pumping technique, but I think the downwind technique takes time and that I have reached an acceptable level.”
“Palma is an interesting event not only for me but because of 70+ entries and that there are some old stars that have taken the winter completely of, and some other young guns that have been training harder than ever.”
Has he found it hard to go from being Olympic champion in one class to a relative beginner in another? “Ha, well there's not much new really. We became gold medalists and best in the world because we always tried to learn new stuff. I don't really see it that way, what has happened has happened and for sure you try to take as much experience from it as possible, but I need to look ahead.”
Salminen lies in 22nd place after four races. Racing in Palma continues to Saturday when the medal races will be held.
Event website: www.trofeoprincesasofia.org