Swiss sailing syndicate Alinghi clinched victory in the penultimate Act of the Extreme Sailing World Series 2014, winning the final race of the day to secure their win ahead of fellow Swiss Realteam and Ben Ainslie Racing. The Wave Muscat leave the French Riviera in disappointing eighth place.
NICE (FRA) – Alinghi kept with Extreme Sailing World Series tradition and had to wait until the last race of Act 7 to be crowned winners in the French Riviera.
For the past four years every single regatta has been decided on the final race of the final day that always offers double points and on Sunday it was not different.
„We had a perfect day,” said skipper Morgan Larson, knowing his team have taken a crucial step in positioning themselves as title favourites going into the season finale in Australia on Dec. 11-14.
Their win means they are now nine points clear of director rivals The Wave Muscat, who struggled with the light wind conditions on the first three days of the regatta, ending a disappointing eighth.
It was a regatta without much wind for the first three days but spectators along the sandy beach in Nice were paid back with some spectacular action on Sunday.
Red Bull Sailing Team were crowned comeback kings of the regatta after clawing their way back from an essentially hopeless position after the first two days. But a sensational day of racing on Sunday as the winds picked up meant double Olympic champions Roman Hagara and Hans-Peter Steinacher and their crew battled back to finish fourth.
With Larson preparing to clinch the overall season title in Australia, Hagara knows he is returning to happy hunting grounds off Sydney’s iconic Opera House, site of his and Steinacher’s gold medal performance for Austria at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
Final Standings Nice/France:
1. Alinghi 183 points, 2. Realteam 171, 3. J.P. Morgan Ben Ainslie Racing 161, 4. Red Bull Sailing 160, 5. Emirates Team New Zealand 156, 6. GAC, 7. SAP, 8. The Wave Muscat, 9. Oman Air, 10. Groupama