Phil Toth with a Star wrap from Miami…
For the second year running a French team has taken the Bacardi Cup and O’Leary and Burrows IRL have finished a close second. But this year the winners are Rohart and Ponsot (2011 was another French team: Florent and Rambeau).
5 teams were in contention for the title prior to the final race, which were tested over a 2 mile windward leeward course in 6 to 8 knots of light but steady breeze. The principal rivals split for the first beat with O’Leary/ Burrows IRL going hard left, Kusznierewicz and Zyki POL going hard left and Rohart and Ponsot FRA sailed more conservatively middle left. No-one was disappointed as Kusznierewicz rounded the top mark second behind Marazzi and Di Maria SUI, with O’Leary IRL close behind and Rohart FRA inside the top ten.
The second run proved crucial with all three main contenders gaining on the left as a small shift and pressure came into play, but the Swiss held the lead through the gate the first time.
On the second beat the leaders all sailed up the middle left side of the course with the Irish covering the French closely. At the second top mark it was Marazzi still leading, followed by Diaz/ Prada, Kusznierewicz, O’Leary and Rohart.
The main contenders all rounded together and sailed the final run in close company. Positions changed slightly in the light sweaty run to the finish, but the Polish and Irish needed boats between them and the French. It wasn’t to be and the French pair crossed the line 4th to claim the title.
This was once again a great championship in varied conditions. A great result for the French team! Final results here.
Now for the Bacardi prizegiving and party..bottoms up!