52 SUPER SERIES launches in Barcelona
A new dawn for the TP52 fleet in Europe was signalled in the beautiful sunshine of Barcelona this morning with the official christening of the Audi Azzurra Sailing Team’s new boat which is expected to be one of the key performers on the new 52 Super Series which starts tomorrow (Thursday) at the 39th Trofeo Conde de Godo
The new Azzurra carries on the famous line of yachts to fly the flag for the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, dating back to 1983 when the club challenged for the America’s Cup. Built in Valencia, Spain to the design of the Botin Partners studio which were responsible for winners of the Audi MedCup Circuit since 2008, the new Audi Azzurra Sailing Team boat is the fourth TP52 for renowned club member Alberto Roemmers and his family.
The boat was named by Princess Zahara Aga Khan who, again, is godmother to the boat and the team. The daughter of the founder of the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda is an avid and enthusiastic supporter of the team and took great pleasure in smashing the Champagne bottle over the bow and wishing the crew luck for the 52 Super Series which will be hosted by the Club next month at the Audi Sardinia Cup.
It gives me great pleasure to name this boat and to wish the crew have a great time this season and achieve a great result.
Said the Princess Aga Khan.
The Audi Azzurra Sailing Team boat is commissioned and owned by the Roemmers family.
We extend our thanks to Mr Alberto Roemmers and his son Pablo who join us, and we join them again for this great adventure, we are especially proud today. Everybody here knows we are here to carry on the story of Azzurra which started in 1983 in Newport, Rhode Island at the America’s Cup.
Mr Riccardo Bonnadeo
The Commodore of the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, Mr Riccardo Bonnadeo said at the reception on the veranda of the Real Club Nautico de Barcelona.
Last year we had a tough year but managed to get and hold a position on the podium and we feel the responsibility, the honour and we are confident in our team and the boat that we will get a better result this season.
Said Mr Pablo Roemmers,
Personally I give thanks to my father for our continued support in sailing.
We are really happy with the new boat. We tested her in Valencia after launching and we raced at Palma Vela where we learned her well and then made a couple of small changes for this regatta and now we are ready to go for the 52 Super Series.
Commented the Audi Azzurra Sailing Team’s skipper and helm Guilermo Parada.
We see this 52 Super Series as a great way to keep going. This is a transition year, but we feel confident it can grow from here for next year. We will have another boat joining us to race in Sardinia next, event and then two or three for Palma and so hopefully a good fleet for next season.
The standard in the class is incredible. When you feel you are fast then you are talking about gaining only a few metres. For sure it is always very close and that is what makes this so exciting.
Asserts Parada who captains the crew which is primarily comprised of the same Italian afterguard as in 2011, Vasco Vascotto and Francesco Bruni as tactician and strategist respectively and navigator Bruno Zirilli along with a core Argentian crew, many of whom have sailed together for more than 10 years.
A practice race is due to take place for the 52 Super Series today as the prelude to two races each day Thursday to Sunday. Five 52’s are taking part in this first event of four: 2011 Audi MedCup Circuit champions Quantum Racing (USA), Audi Azzurra Sailing Team (ITA), Niklas and Catherine Zennstrom’s RAN (SWE), Audi Sailing Team powered by ALL4ONE (FRA/GER) which is skippered by Spanish champion Gonzalo Araujo, and Tony Langley’s mainly British team on Gladiator (GBR).
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