June 22, 2018

Lake Como was even more beautiful on Day 2 of the 5.5 Swiss/Italian Championship but it had a sharp bite. The wind had switched to the north overnight and opened up the tops of the mountains, which had been shrouded in cloud on Thursday, and some still showed the last of the winter snow. But it also brought strong winds that built through the morning and caused the only race sailed to be shortened at the second top mark, with 30 knot gusts coming down the lake.

After a short postponement and a full on first beat, SUI 228, Marie-Francoise XIX (Jurg Menzi, Jurgen Eiermann, Christof Wilke) led round the first top from SUI 251 New Moon (Mark Holowesko, Christoph Burger, Peter Vlasov). Most boats set their kites on the hectic downwind and there were a few boats in trouble. It was very tight on the second upwind amongst the leaders and the shortened course caught out a few crews. New Moon crossed first from SUI 214 Caracole (Bernard Haissly, Nicolas Berthoud) after sailing a great second beat.

The fleet was then sent back to the Marina di Domaso to wait for a break in the wind. But it did not come and by 16.00 further racing was official abandoned for the day.

Kim Chabani on SUI 126, Feng Shui had this to say of the day.

“It is interesting how friendly this lake looks with a northern wind when watching it from the terrace, but when you get out on the water it’s an angry beast. Changing the jib to the heavy was a must. We were a little high on the starting line and couldn’t find a space to squeeze in, resulting in a late start. The starboard tack didn’t look bad so we went all the way to the right ending up with a low port tack on the layline.”

“After that we managed to pick up the fleet again. A quick gybe set when rounding the spreader mark brought us back into the top five on a challenging downwind with very strong gusts, looking backwards waiting for the right moment to lower the spinnaker before it got even worse."

“It was our fault not seeing the unexpected upwind finish, but it allowed SUI 211Forza Del Destino, (George Prapopoulos, Philip Prapopoulos, Simon Pfaendles) and 5Billy5 (Mariacristina Rapisardi, Giovanni Arrivabene, Marco Bonzanigo) to finish a few meters in front.”

Desite this Feng Shui moves to one place to fifth.

New Moon has now won two of the three races sailed and moves up to second overall.

Chris Burger, said, “The fleet was maybe still a little asleep this am. When we left the harbour at 11am for a 12pm start we were alone. We took the time to learn about the new northerly breeze that was announced for today. She was up there, maybe a steady 20 knots. After a short postponement the fleet was sent off. SUI 228 and us were the furthest left boats of the fleet at the start. And we felt very comfortable, starting to play the shifts and were chasing down SUI 228 during the first downwind.”

“The breeze was gusting 30-33 knots by now... Gybing was just fine, some boats got in trouble... At the leeward mark we managed to close our gap to the leading boat and sailed a really nice upwind, with good speed, to take the bullet at the top of shortened course.”

The fleet have been made very welcome during this inaugural combined Swiss and Italian championship with a full social programme organised. On Thursday the crews visited the small boat museum for a drinks and snacks reception while tonight the host club, AVAL CDV, is hosting the championship dinner.

The championship continues Saturday with three races scheduled from 12.00.

Top 5
1 SUI 228 Marie Françoise XIX (Jurg Menzi, Jurgen Eiermann, Christof Wilke, Modern) 6
2 SUI 251 New Moon (Mark Holowesko, Christoph Burger, Peter Vlasov) 11
3 BAH 22 John B (Gavin McKinney, Mathias Dahlman, Bjorn Hansen, Modern) 12
4 SUI 214 Caracole (Bernard Haissly, Nicolas Berthoud) 16
5 SUI 126 Feng Shui (Arend Jan Pasman, Ron Anzier, Kim Chabani) 18

Full results