Day One of the 2018 J/70 European Championships was blessed with sparkling conditions in Ria de Vigo. A brisk northerly breeze piped up to 18 knots with a metre sea state providing thrilling downwind conditions. Highly competitive starts, with solid traffic at mark roundings, made for high octane racing of the highest calibre. Three races were held for the 69 boat fleet, with three different winners. Krzysztof Krempec’s “EWA” (POL), Alberto Rossi’s “Enfant Terrible” (ITA), and Paolo Tomsic’s Società Nautica Grignano (ITA). Luis Bugallo’s “Marnatura” (ESP), representing the Real Club Náutico de Vigo, was the top Corinthian J/70.
Peter Duncan’s “Relative Obscurity” (USA) came back from a bad start in the last race to get up to fourth, which really made the difference, the reigning J/70 World Champion was a happy man after his first taste of action in Vigo.
“It was gorgeous sailing out there today, a beautiful body of water, very exciting with 69 boats on the start line. The race committee did a good job, which is not easy with that many boats. I have always thought that Europeans sail J/70s well, and they showed that today. It was really close, if you made a mistake, you paid for it.” – Peter Duncan.
Alberto Rossi’s “Enfant Terrible” (ITA) scored a 3-1-11 to finish the day in second place. The former Farr40 and TP52 World Champion was full of praise for the J/70 Class.
“It was tough racing today, the level continues to increase in the class, with the top 30 boats all capable of winning races. Even with a split start line, a lot of boats tend to go for the favoured side, and if you don’t get a good start and hold your lane, you can easily end up with a bad result. We did make a few mistakes, but we are happy with our results.” – Alberto Rossi.
Krzysztof Krempec’s “EWA” (POL) had a great day, winning the first race and scoring top ten results to finish Day One in third position. Krempec’s team has only been racing in the class for the last 18 months.
“I am very pleased, we had three good races with excellent wind and it was really good fun. The level in the regatta is very high with a lot of boats together, which means it is not easy; you are constantly fighting with different boats. Our success today was not down to one thing, it was important to sail consistently, even though two of our starts were not good, we concentrated on our position and boat speed, and they were the keys to success.” – Krzysztof Krempec.
The top Spanish team today was Jose María Torcida’s “Noticia” (ESP) scoring a 9-2-9 to place fourth after three races. Noticia was runner up for the 2017 European Championships.
“The conditions today have been great and it seems we are going to have more windy days during the week. Racing in a fleet of 69 boats is always tricky, specially at the starts, which will always be really tight. With a clear favourite side of the course, the starts were really complicated.” – Jose María Torcida.
After racing, over 300 competitors enjoyed local delicacies including traditional Galician tapas and refreshments at the Race Village. In the grounds of the Real Club de Vigo live music from Vigo cover band Penny Lane Syndrome created a perfect atmosphere. The 2018 J/70 European Championships continues tomorrow, Wednesday 13 June. Three races are scheduled, with similar awesome conditions predicted for the international fleet.