Apr 2, 2013

Palma World Cup Day 2: Dutch Camp Report by Jasper Van Staveren

The NED team was training hard for months at Palma, and beyond being experienced sailors, their performance has lots to do with sailing these waters. Check Coen de Koning words below.
Jasper Van Staveren knows the dutch team quite well,  Today he talked with his dutch friends on the first day of racing. Jasper is one the top contributos here in CSN, latest event event was F18 Worlds at LA. Images: Martinez Studio / Martinez Studio / Jesus Renedo
Report by Jasper Van Staveren/sailshoot.com - ISAF World Cup PALMA: Advanced Catamaran Sailing in stormy conditions
An impetuous race day for the catamaran sailors in warm Mallorca is over. Tired but satisfied, the sailors looked back on their exciting launch of the ISAF Princess Sofia Cup in Palma. Day 1 N17 racing was cancelled due to strong winds.
Today the Dutch team did a good job with two boats finishing in the overall top three.

For the avid catsailor the day started relatively quiet, but during the day the breeze seriously came in. "In the first and partly the second race, everyone could relatively easy sail his own race. Keep the main completely flat and pull as hard to sail forward during the second race".

Mandy Mulder and Thijs Visser were ‘on fire’. They started very sharp and consistently sailed in the right direction. Their first race was an easy job, the second race was a close call with the Austrians which they lost because of a capsize. The third race it became clear it was a battle against the elements. Lost of nosedives were a fact  and directly countable at the first downwind, but also a lot of damage on the boats itself. "But it was a spectacular racing day today" said an enthusiastic Karel Begemann  currently third overall place together with helm Renee Groeneveld.

Bad luck...
Mandy Mulder and Thijs Visser were not lucky during their third race, beyond being first overall. In the last upwind mark rounding in the third race things went wrong. A broken traveler combined with the hard wind made an emergency repair impossible, so they score a DNC as "net" effect.

Elke Delnooz and Mischa Heemskerk had  very good boatspeed in their first race, but choose to go towards Palma when they tacked. Waiting for serious breeze they waited and managed to finsih 12th. In their third race they were in a favorable fourth place, but a double (forced) tack made them eventually finish in eleventh place.

"Our preparations were unfortunately not ideal. On Sunday we realized that water was filtering in one hull due to a damaged hull.  We could borrow from the Austrian sailors one of their used and damaged hulls. Just before the practice race we had it repaired. Despite the equipment failure, we were still able to start in time with a fully fixed Nacra 17", said Begemann.
Wednesday the team will start as sharp as possible because of the lighter breeze. "Ok, a bit more risk, but we will start in front row tomorrow!"

Support on top-level
The Dutch team gets support from the highest level. Former World Champion Formula 18 Coen de Koning is in Palma to support the Dutch teams.
"The Dutch teams have in Palma a considerable advantage. The last months they’ve trained a lot in windy conditions. You now see that they’ve a better boat handeling in these conditions, compared to the other "light weather" sailing teams.

Coen’s view on the Dutch teams: Mandy and Thijs are going just fine, they don’t do crazy things. Renee and Karel are fast as well. Elke and Mischa did well, but lacked some boat speed. I think more time together on the boat will give them some practical advantage. If all other teams will successeed under these sometimes heavy conditions is an open question, the physical load is heavy. I am very curious!" said the positive critical analysis of De Koning.

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