The Wave, Muscat out of Oman has taken the Extreme Sailing Series in Qingdao yet again. Congrats to the winners. Overall, Alinghi is leading The Wave, Muscat by 1 point in the 2013 Extreme Sailing Series. Thanks to all who made this event a success in Qingdao. See overall results and more info below.
More info on The Wave, Muscat’s win in Qingdao
MUSCAT — A nerve-jangling final day’s racing in Fushan Bay saw The Wave, Muscat lock horns with rivals Alinghi and emerge triumphant to retain their China crown of the Extreme Sailing Series 2013 Act 3 in Qingdao, according to a press release issued by Oman Sail yesterday. It was the hardest and closest racing they had ever been part of, said Musab al Hadi, one of five Oman Sail crew who fought hard throughout all four days to return The Wave, Muscat to the top of the podium following the frustrations in Singapore.
Going into the final double pointer race, The Wave, Muscat had a slim four point advantage over the Swiss team, their overnight lead having been whittled down by some outstanding light airs tactics and manoeuvres from skipper Morgan Larson and his team. A classic match race between Larson and Oman Sail’s Leigh McMillan in the final race saw the lead — and Qingdao honours — change hands at crucial times and before the final leg, lying in fourth place The Wave, Muscat looked to be defeated before they made a late surge into second to earn the win.
“It was a bit tense but we are massively relieved to get back on top,” said an exhausted but happy McMillan afterwards. “Morgan in his typical style took us by surprise when we were second or third — we weren’t expecting him to get a move on up and we were caught unaware and took a penalty. “From there it was a real battle with him having a dig at us and us having a dig at him but all the time they were eating into our lead. At the end they pushed us down to fourth at the top mark which would have cost us the trophy but we managed to pull back into second which gave us the win but it was nerve-wracking.”
McMillan paid tribute to his winning team of Pete Greenhalgh, Ed Smyth, Musab al Hadi and Will Howden saying the disruptions at the start of the week, where regular Omani crew Hashim al Rashdi was taken ill with appendicitis and was replaced by Howden, had made little difference to team dynamics. “We are a strong team with Hashim and we are a strong team with Will but we are looking forward to having Hashim back on the boat when he has recovered,” he said.
The high tension involved in successfully defending their Qingdao title when they were being chased so hard by Alinghi had made the contest the hardest and closest in their Extreme careers said Musab al Hadi. “It wasn’t easy and we were a bit nervous on the starts. We were watching Alinghi and they were watching us and the pressure was intense but this was what we had been planning for. “It was the hardest and the closest racing I have ever been part of. But we enjoyed it in the end — the support I had from my friends and family in Oman helped me a lot. There were messages telling me we should keep on pushing and we did.”
Earlier in the day, McMillan who as skipper of The Wave, Muscat plays a vital role in teaching younger sailors at Oman Sail what it takes to compete at the top level, took part in an educational session at the Extreme Club in the Race Village on Fushan Bay. He gave a sailing lesson to 20 Chinese students from Qingdao’s Laoshan Zhonghan and Fushan elementary schools and using Oman Sail’s championship winning Extreme 40 The Wave, Muscat, showed the children a range of basic sailing manouvres to excite their interest in the sport.
The Qingdao win leaves The Wave, Muscat in second place overall on the 2013 Extreme Sailing Series leaderboard, trailing Alinghi by just one point. The two boats will resume their duel in Act 4 of the Extreme Sailing Series in Turkey from June 20 to 23. “It looks like we could be having a nice little tussle with Alinghi for the rest of the series but they seem to have a magic touch in the very light airs so we need to look at how we can reduce that advantage,” McMillan said.
ESS 2013 Act 3 standings (after Day 4): 1 The Wave, Muscat (OMA) 202 pts, 2 Alinghi (SUI) 200 pts, 3 SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) 191 pts, 4 GAC Pindar (NZL) 181 pts, 5 Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) 168 pts, 6 Team Korea (KOR) 163 pts, 7 Realteam (SUI) 154 pts, 8 China Team (CHN) 145 pts.
- Alinghi (SUI) 27 points.
- The Wave, Muscat (OMA) 26 points.
- Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) 24 points.
- SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) 20 points.
- Team Korea (KOR) 16 points.
- GAC Pindar (NZL) 16 points.
- Realteam (SUI) 14 points.
- Team X Invitational 13 points.
Extreme Sailing Series 2013 overall standings after Act 3, Qingdao
Position / Team / Points
Extreme Sailing Series