Yesterday was a wet and stormy day and only one race was completed after a long postponement. The Classics were cancelled altogether, but the remaining divisions were put into competition. NATALIA received 10th in IRCC and in IRC One Design APPARITION took 1st, CUORDILEONE 2nd, LONG ECHO 3rd, and MAHALO 4th. In IRC those scores converted to 12th 16th, 17th, and 22nd respectively.
The enthusiasm of being at Les Voiles transferred itself to the wine covered slopes and the hilltop town of Gassin, about 15 minutes outside of Saint-Tropez for the Swan 42 Class dinner. The setting was Restaurant Le Micocoulier with Michelin-rated cuisine. Owners and crews had a grand time regaling with owers and crews from other Swan 42s.
Today's racing was postponed again due to lack of wind and eventually one race was held. "The wind was 6 and very spotty with a very short time at 12," noted Ken Colburn (USA-MA) of APPARITION. "The start was challenging with a large fleet (30 boats) and spotty light wind and it was tough for all the 42s to get a clear lane with so much traffic." He admitted, "Once the first windward leg was over it became a bit of a parade. Boat management with other classes coming from behind was just as important as tactics and speed," he concluded.
Natalia Brailoiu's (ROU) NATALIA had an excellent day today finishing 4th in IRC, her best finish thus far placing her in 7th place in this formidable 30-boat division. APPARITION was 6th (OD 1st), MAHALO 14th (OD 2nd), and LONG ECHO 16th (OD 3rd). CUORDILEONE was disqualified for being over at the start.
Both Charles Kenahan (USA-MA) and Colburn agreed, "This really is wonderful and we are glad to be here. But we are looking forward to true windward/leeward races tomorrow when the two US boats face off in the BMW challenge put forth by CUORDILEONE and LONG ECHO, the two European challengers.
This evening Leonardo Ferragamo hosted a cocktail party for Swan owners and guests aboard SOLLEONE, his Swan 90S. It was a lovely way to cap of the evening.
There was no shortage of either wind or seas today on Day 1 of competition at Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez. The course was 28 miles with plenty of action for the more than 300 boats and their crews. It was a demanading day and crews worked hard. Support boats including a rescue boat ere very much in evidence, while a flotilla of press boats surrounded the fleet and helicopters buzzed overhead.
Four Swan 42s are competing in IRC One Design with their sights on the Swan 42 Class Trophy to be awarded to the Best Performance of a Swan 42 in the Rolex Swan Cup and Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez.
Ken Colburn (MA) and APPARITION were the first of the OD 42s to finish today's race. "It was a true coastal race with winds in the high teens and 4-6' seas," said Colburn. "The downwind leg was 11 miles and we used (barely), the 2A, a downwind intermediate sail that made the difference," he noted. "It was a good race and really a wonderful day plus we took some of the Swan 45s," he added. "The crew did an excellent job with spinnaker peels," he noted.
Tim Saxon (GBR), a member of Royal Thames Yacht Club, is the Tactician on Barry Sampson's (GBR) LONG ECHO which was second in OD today. "The 1.5 hour downwind leg gave us different choices in spinnakers to use," he noted. "It was really great to see three Swan 42s within 50 meters of each other at one point," he added.
Natalia Brailoiu (ROU) and NATALIA are competing in IRC in the same division as the OD Swan 42s. She had the best finish today in 7th place. Brailoiu comented "It was a good day for us," but noted it was difficult to place well when starting with TP 52s, a comment that was echoed by other Swan 42 owners.