Provezza Pursuing Consistency, Seeking A Return To 2019’s Form
The foreshortened 2021 52 SUPER SERIES punished high scores. With 19 races sailed across the three regattas teams which had one or two bad races really paid a heavy price. Ergin Imré’s Turkish flagged Provezza started well with a fourth in Puerto Portals – scene of their 2017 regatta triumph – but slumped to seventh and eighth in Menorca and Palma. Lurking in their scoreline are an 11th and a 10th – 21 points in total proving a weighty ballas.
For 2022 they have made some changes to their crew line up. Cole Parada, who was a key player on the Azzurra 2020 title winning team and a long, long standing valuable Azzurra and Matador lynchpin has signed on with Provezza, while three times Olympic medallist Santi Lange will be in the coach boat in Baiona and will be part of the team as his Olympic programme permits.
Nacho Postigo, Provezza navigator explains the crew changes,
“Basically there is a theory that if you keep doing the same thing every year you will end up with the same results. So it was time for a change. The most important change is one of our longest serving Turkish guys Ahmet who was on the runners and one of the closest friends of Ergin, who has been on Provezzas since something like 1992, feels he is too old to be doing the runner on a TP52. As it happens we all disagreed but it was his decision. And so he has been replaced by Cole Parada who of course was strategist and runner man on Azzurra. Cole is coming with a massive world of experience. He is one of these guys who is very underrated but really is one of the best guys I have sailed with. He is amazing. He has great logical processes and brings a whole lot of information and ideas from the campaigns he has done has a very, very high value. And I think he wants to prove himself outside of the Azzurra world. He really has already done that. The week we had in Valencia the whole team was really impressed with him. That is the biggest change.”
There is a new mainsheet trimmer in Skip Baxter who as many years of experience in the TP52 fleet including on Quantum Racing, replacing Chris Hosking, while Juan Messeguer and Willie Beavis join the Provezza group, Messeguer as trimmer and Beavis floating.
“Skip Baxter is in. The good thing from that perspective is that now Colle is doing a big part of what Chris Hosking was doing in terms of setting up the rig, so basically we have taken some of the work load off the mainsail trimmer by adding the mainsail trimmer and I think that will make the mainsail trimmer’s life easier. We have Juan Messeguer doing spinnakers and we have Will Beavis now who is floating from different positions. We still, of course, have some amateurs on board and so having Will backing up here and there will just help out.”
Postigo says they have not made any changes to the keel, rudder or mast but are more focused on setting up the rig differently, but they had good speed in training in Valencia in the spring
“It was difficult to tell how our allround speed was in Valencia because it was generally quite windy but in those conditions we felt really, really good. Last year we were very strong in 13-15kts but had completely lost our edge that we had in eight to 12kts that we felt we had in 2019. And we did still feel weak in 20kts plus. So let’s see how all that changes.”
After a slightly disappointing 2021 season the Provezza team are determined to give ultra supportive owner Ergin Imre at least one standout result this season, trying to recapture their form of 2017.
“I think Ergin would be very happy if we could do third or better at the World Championships, that would be a big goal for the team. And trying to finish on the podium at the end of the season, that is the big goal.”
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