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36th Student Yachting World Cup at La Rochelle - Day 1

by Icarus Sailing Media 4 Nov 2016 12:41 GMT 2-7 November 2016
36th Student Yachting World Cup begins at La Rochelle © Icarus

The sun was up and shining for the first day of competition at La Rochelle. The crews could not have hoped for a better start. A nice wind of 8 knots coming from S-E allowed the participants to quickly get the hang of it and show what they were capable of.

Four races were run on Day 1. Although all teams are almost equally skilled, the ranking is starting to take shape. The Swiss Team, holder of the 2015 title, secured another win in the first race. The English Team from Southampton also played their cards right and managed to win both the second and third races.

The strain of the previous races started to take its toll, and the first mistakes were made during the third race. The two teams from across the Atlantic started the race before the actual starting signal. The Canadian Team made a penalty turn to make up for this early start. Meanwhile the American Team kept on going, which resulted in their disqualification for the third race.

The final race was without any doubt the most interesting of the day, as some strategy was direly needed. It consisted of a 16-nautical-mile coastal run. Five boats quickly took the lead: the two UK Teams, the Irish Team, the Swiss Team and the Canadian Team. After a struggle of more than two hours, Southampton finished first, taking the lead in the general ranking.

However, a collision between the two English teams earlier on resulted in the disqualification of Southampton from the first race. The Swiss Team from EPFL is now leading the temporary ranking with 11 points, closely followed by Southampton University (UK) and Cork Institute of Technology (Ireland) with 12 points each. Then come Queen’s University (Canada-15 points), Loughborough University (UK-20 points), California Maritime Academy (USA-21 points), Strathclyde University (Scotland-26 points) and Kobe University (Japan-29 points).

After only one day of racing things are just getting started and everything is possible!

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