Carroll On The Brink Of Malcesine Victory, Cirillo And Marinelli Fight For Overall Series Title

16 July 2011


Malcesine, Italy - Day 2 of the Malcesine edition of the 2011 Melges 32 Audi Sailing Series saw three more races sailed in sunny warm conditions and southerly Ora winds which peaked at 16-17 knots. Going into the day in second place, Jason Carroll on USA 128 Argo turned in a superb 5-1-1 performance today, to now lead the regatta by 7 points, from yesterday’s leader Lanfranco Cirillo onITA 212 Fantastica who could only manage a 3-15-6 scoreline today. Despite struggling home in sixteenth in the first race of the day, Alessio Marinelli on ITA 1 Audi Fratelli Giacomel recovered with a fourth and and a second in the subsequent races, to climb into third place, 10 points adrift of Cirillo at the end of Day 2. Dropping to fourth, 4 points behind Marinelli, is Luca Lalli on ITA 23 B-Lin Sailing and in fifth, a further 7 points back is the winner of the first race today, Carlo Alberini on ITA 186 Calvi Network.

Adding to the final day tension, with Malcesine being the final act of the 2011 Melges 32 Audi Sailing Series, it appears that the entire four-regatta series is going to be decided on very the final day of racing. After today’s racing, in the overall series Lanfranco Cirillo on ITA 212 ‘Fantastica’ now holds a tenuous 3 point lead over second placed Marinelli in second. John Kilroy on USA 13131 Samba Pa Tisits in third, another 8 points adrift of Cirillo. With a strong chance of just one race being run in the Northerly Pela wind early tomorrow morning, expectations are high for a do or die match race between Cirillo and Marinelli for the 2011 series title. Kilroy no doubt will be watching for any such encounter to give him an opportunity to snatch an overall series win.

After a now familiar two hour wait wait for the Ora to develop, racing got underway around 14.00 this afternoon in a freshening 12 - 14 knot breeze. On the first beat, Kilroy initially looked to have the advantage on the very far left of the course. However, by the end of the leg the breeze was hard in the left enabling the boats on the middle right to almost lay in on Port and leaving Kilroy and several others well overstood. Alberini had nailed the final approach to the mark and he led comfortably from Mauro Mocchegiani on ITA 187 Rush Diletta in second, and Wolfang Stolz on GER 206 Opus One in third. By the bottom of the first run, Alberini had dramatically increased his lead over the chasing pack. Behind him Mocchegiani was equally comfortable in second place and Edoardo Pavesio on ITA 191 Fra Martina had moved into third. The second beat saw the whole fleet working the middle right with no changes in the top bunch. By the end of the second downwind leg Alberini had built up a massive lead to take the race win, ahead of Mocchegiani in second. Meanwhile overnight leader Lanfranco Cirillo on ITA 212 Fantastica had sneaked his way into third by the finish.

The first beat of Race 2 was a little more equal but in the end it was the boats on the right who made the quickest progress and led the fleet at the top mark. Carroll led the pack in from the right and rounded ahead of John Porter on USA 49 Full Throttle in second and Kees Kaan on NED 209 Roark in third. From that point on Carroll was in total control and went on to take a comprehensive race win. Porter also looked comfortable for most of the race until the final run, when he had to work hard to hold off a charging Antonello Morina on ITA 179 Sei Tu 32, who had made big gains on his own down the left of the racecourse on that final leg. In the end Porter did enough to take second with Morina coming home in third.

With evening coming on the breeze had dropped below to around 10 knots and lost some stability by the start of the final race of the day. In the main, the right paid once again on the first beat with all but one of the leading pack coming from that side. Proving just how tricky this lake can be to predict however, by the narrowest of margins possible, Carlo Perrone on ITA 19 Atlantica sneaked in from the left to lead the fleet around the first top mark. Behind him Carrol rounded in second, and made quick work of taking the lead in the first part of the first run. Once again a highly composed Carroll remained unchallenged for the rest of the race to take his second race win of the day. Marinelli came home in second, with Perrone hanging on to take third.

With the likelihood of just one race being sailed tomorrow (at 8.00 AM to take advantage of the Northerly Pela breeze), with a 7 point margin at the top of the leaderboard, Carroll stands on the brink of claiming his first 2011 Audi Sailing Series victory. Behind him in second place, Cirillo will be waiting to pounce on any mistakes from the American. Cirillo has more than just this regatta to think about however, as in the overall 2011 Audi Sailing Series series he holds a 3 point overall lead over Marinelli in second.

TOP TEN RESULTS (After 6 Races)
1.) Jason Carroll/Andy Horton, ARGO; [5]-2-5-5-1-1 = 14 
2.) Lanfranco Cirillo/Michelle Paoletti, Fantastica; 4-1-7-3-[15]-6 = 21
3.) Alessio Marinelli/Riccardo Simoneschi, Audi Fratelli Giacomel Armonia; 3-6-[16]-16-4-2 = 31 
3.) Luca Lalli/Lorenzo Bressani, B-Lin Sailing.com; 7-11-2-[12]-11-4 = 35
5.) Carlo Alberini/Enrico Fonda, Calvi Network; 1-14-11-1-[21]-15 = 42
6.) Edoardo Pavesio, Fra Martina; 11-9-[23]-7-12-7 = 46
7.) Antonello Morina/Paolo Cian, Sei Tu 32; 2-17-19-[21]-3-8 = 49
8.) Peter Rogers/Ruairidh Scott, Highlife; [OCS]-7-6-4-22-11 = 50
9.) John Porter/Jonathan McKee, Full Throttle; 9-13-10-[23]-2-20 = 54
10.) Wolfgang Stolz/Jesper Radich, Opus One; 13-4-[18]-18-10-9 = 54
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TOP FIVE AUDI SAILING SERIES RESULTS (After 3 Events, 6 Races Complete In Malcesine)
1.) Lanfranco Cirillo, Fantastica - 119 points
2.) Alessio Marinelli, Audi Fratelli Giacomel Armonia - 122 points
3.) John Kilroy, Samba Pa Ti - 130 points
4.) Filippo Pacinotti, Brontolo HH - 138 points
5.) Luca Lalli, B-Lin Sailing.com - 154.5 points