Race 4 – Quantum Win, and Climb the Pack
After one general recall, Race 4 officially got underway in much the same conditions as the previous three, 15-to-20 knots from the east-southeast with short choppy seas and brilliant sunshine. Once again there was a fierce battle for the pin end, with Azzurra and Sled both double-tacking inside of 30-seconds and Quantum sliding down to join the fray. Sled came out the worse for wear and was forced to bail out on port tack while Azzurra held off Quantum and edged out to an early lead in the battle for the left side. However, unlike in the previous three races, the left wasn’t the key to the first beat success. Working the right side were Provezza and Bronenosec, and those two boats led around the windward mark, with Sled in third and Quantum in fourth. It was by far the most competitive rounding of the regatta, with the entire fleet passing the mark within a minute of each other. Azzurra and Paprec were able to just squeak around the mark, but lost crucial places in the process. After a trio of mid-fleet races to start the regatta, Doug DeVos’s team on Quantum appeared determined to make a statement in this contest. They set early and blazed down the run to move into second behind Provezza. Sled’s race came apart at the leeward mark as they held the drop until the last second and wound up sailing over the spinnaker. By the time they untangled themselves, the fleet was out of reach. Quantum and Provezza worked the right side of the second beat and were bow-to-bow around the final mark. Another aggressive set by Quantum Racing earned them a few crucial meters and they were able to hold on for the win with Provezza second and Bronenosec third. Platoon, after rounding the first mark in 10th, finished fourth.
After enjoying life at the head of the pack on Day 1, Harm Müller-Spreer’s Platoon team spent Day 2 battling in the trenches for a pair of sixths. A four-race total of 14 points keeps them in the lead, but just barely. Quantum Racing’s win in Race 4 slots that team into second, a point back. Despite an eighth in Race 4, which could’ve been worse, Azzurra is third with 19 points. Bronenosec has the same total, but sits fourth after the tie break. Provezza, who won the day with a pair of seconds, is fifth.
The Quantum Key West Race Week will take place from 16-20 January, with races starting at 11:00 every day. Track the boats via state-of-the-art Virtual Eye at www.52SUPERSERIES.com/LIVE or via the app.
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