Aruba, November 6th 2005
Counting seems to be difficult
On Sunday, Stuart Gummer and Gillian Power had a flying start of the 15th Aruba Heineken Catamaran Regatta. The British F18 sailors took two bullets in the first two races and are leading after day one. John Moret and Gijs Jannink (Tornado, NED) are in second position, followed by Richard Allen and Simon Farren (Tornado, GBR). After a big squall during the practice race, it cleared up in the afternoon and the 15 knots wind pleased the competitors.
Gummer and Power were less fortunate at the Aruba Regatta 2004, as their boat was destroyed in a collision. They switched from the Spitfire to the F18 class and bought a Capricorn. Gillian Power: "It is not only great and fast, but also nice to run up with the Tornado’s now." And today, they beat them all on rating (after calculation). "We have to beat Mischa Heemskerk, since he finished ahead of us at our F18 nationals", said Gummer with a smile on her face.
Richard Allen and Simon Farren took the lead in the first race, until the last beat. Allen: "The two teams behind us went to the left and right. I wanted to defend our position and tried to stay in the middle of both Tornado’s. That was the wrong call, because there was no wind there." A fourth position was the result. Gerard Loos and Ruurd van Wieren (Tornado, NED) took the line honours, which was good enough for a second position on handicap, followed by Eduard Zanen and Mischa Heemskerk (Tornado, NED).
In today’s second race, the leader made again a mistake. Eduard Zanen and Mischa Heemskerk were far ahead of the runners up, but they sailed an axtra round. Zanen: "We are obviously both not able to count from four." Allen and Farren had a fight with Loos and Van Wieren. Allen: "It was just like ten years ago, so here we go again. We were rounding the upwind mark on starboard tack and Gerard Loos tried to sneak in on port tack, so we are going to protest him." They won it and Loos/Van Wieren were disqualified for race two. James Power and Marcus Lynch (F18, GBR) became second on rating, followed by John Moret and Gijs Jannink.
In the first beat of the practise race in the morning, a big squall caused a domino effect among the catamarans. Hans Breur (NED): "We looked back and the whole fleet laid upside down, so we decided to go back." Some people had a memorable ride, like Chris Sproat on his Spitfire: "That was the windiest downwind reach, I have ever been in. We sailed straight downind to the mark, with the gennaker flapping in front of our mainsail. Now we are back on the beach, I can say it was fantastic."
Ten course and long distance races are scheduled for the Aruba Heineken Catamaran Regatta. The event starts on Sunday November 6th and ends on Friday November 11th at the west side of Aruba.
Top five after two races:
1. GBR - F18 - Gummer/Power, 2 points
2. NED - Tornado - Morret/Jannink, 8 points
3. GBR - Tornado - Allen/Farren, 8 points
4. GBR - F18 - Power/Lynch, 10 points
5. GBR - Tornado - Payne/Hunt, 16 points
In addition to the head sponsors Heineken and Aruba Tourism Authority, the Aruba Heineken Catamaran Regatta is sponsored by Hapag Lloyd, TNG Swiss Watches, KLM, Holiday Inn, Does & Cadushi, Magic Marine, Coca Cola, AWA, Anthony Veder & Co, Aruba Watersports Center, Kodak, Palm Tours, Pelican Watersports, Seaworld Explorer and Aruba Bank.