Peter Peet, from The Netherlands, is the new leader at the 2023 Finn European Masters at Campione del Garda after two more extremely difficult but fun races on Wednesday. Britain’s John Greenwood moves up to second after winning the second race while Simon Bovey, from Switzerland, is now third.
It was a very hot day on Lake Garda with a shifty 8-9 knots filling in after a short postponement ashore and some different tactics in play during the day.
After some starting practice, the fleet finally got away and similar to Tuesday, most of the fleet headed to the cliffs. However, many also overstood allowing those who got the laylines right to make some gains. Italy’s Roberto Benamati was one of those and rounded third, took the lead on the run and led round to take the gun. Britain’s Lawrence Crispin sailed a great race to cross second with Peter Overup, from Sweden, in third.
Race 4 was slightly different with a big left shift on the first upwind, allowing those at the pin to almost lay the top in one tack while those at the boat were in different wind near the cliffs. France’s Laurent Hay rounded first from Greenwood and Bas de Waal, from The Netherlands. It was tight round the next leg then Greenwood took the lead after a rare mistake from Hay after missing the top spreader mark. Greenwood extended downwind to cross ahead of Peet and Benamati, who put in the best score of the day.
However, several front runners, including de Waal and Hay picked up a first or second starting penalty, but there were plenty of high scores throughout the fleet.
Benamati said “I’m very happy to have won this race, I had a very good start. I started in the middle of the starting line, then I tacked immediately and I went to the right and I was lucky to not overstand the lay line. Myself and the two others went straight to the mark, so we gained a lot of meters and then we were in front. I was pretty fast on the run and I passed the two boats in front, and then I was leading the fleet all the second beat and the second round.”
Former double World Masters champion, Greenwood said it was a trying day.
“What can I say about today? It was really, really testing day we had. We had situations where the windward mark was being moved after the first sequence, so lot of guys were overstanding and then in the second race you could lay the mark from the pin, so really challenging day for everyone, but the sun was shining, and the wind blew more than yesterday, so I think everybody’s had a testing day, but hopefully the beer will be cold soon.” It was. Happy hour was not far away.
There are four races left to sail and with a discard coming in after the next race, the landscape after Thursday could look quite different.
Results after four races
1 NED 148 GrM Peter Peet27
2 GBR 5 GGM John Greenwood38
3 SUI 59 Mst Simon Bovay41
4 ITA 115 Mst Roberto Strappati 52
5 GBR 74 GrM Lawrence Crispin 54
6 HUN 5 Mst Tibor Pallay 60
7 AUS 22 GrM Paul Mckenzie 60
8 SWE 32 GrM Olof Lundqvist 61
9 ITA 788 GGM Roberto Benamati 69
10 SWE 72 GrM Peter Overup 69
Full gallery on Flickr here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/finnclassphotos/albums/721777203114782
Results here: https://www.campioneunivela.it/regate/2023/campionato-europeo-finn-master/finn/