Bol d’Or

Geneva

Over 300 boats were on the starting line off the Societe Nautique de Geneve at 1000 yesterday for the 74th running of the Bol d’Or. It was a sunny day with Mont Blanc clearly visible, but there was little wind for the start. Artemis Racing was participating again this year with Torbjorn Tornqvist at the helm.

We were literally drifting at the start, but fortunately the fleet was divided over three starting lines.

The breeze was light all the way up to the East end of the lake making the 42 nautical mile journey take over seven hours for the fastest boats…the D35s and the M2s catamarans. The stops and starts are too numerous to recall. The lead changed countless times as boats 100 meters apart often had wind from the opposite direction.

Our route East took us past Versoix, Rolle, Nyon, Lausanne, Evian and Montreux to La Bouveret. The green hills rolling down to the lake with snow capped mountains in the background provide a dramatic setting for sure. But it was slow going, at times we were just drifting wondering which mountain the next breath of air would descend from.

Artemis rounded the half way point at 1745, last of the D35s. Immediately after turning the “barge” at Le Bouveret, we made a B-line for the Northern shore along with Alinghi and Lady Cat. We managed to pass two boats with that move although it seemed like we might have gotten more out of it initially as the fleet in the middle of the lake was parked as we reached along at 15 knots.

As we headed west toward the finish in Geneva, we met the Southwesterly breeze which had been in place all day in the “Petit Lac”. That is the Western third of the lake. So, as things settled down with the wind, the fleet made good progress and not much changed in the positions.

At the finish, the kids on Realstone edged out a well sailed Julius Bar by just seven minutes, for the win. Zen completed the podium. Artemis Racing finished at 22:05 in 7th place, bettering last years position by three places. It was a long day! As Torbjorn said at the finish, we found a few more of the bad spots on the track. It seems that winning a Bol d’Or might be a project that takes time as experience on the many twists and turns of the lake counts!

Back to VLC right now. Wishing all fathers a great day of being pampered by your family!

Paul

D35 Versoix

The D35 fleet was racing this past weekend on Lake Geneva. The three day event consisted of windward-leeward buoy racing on Friday and Sunday with the classic “long distance” race Geneve-Rolle-Geneve on Saturday.

As usual, the winds were pretty light for the most part all weekend. The Artemis team tied for 4th place over the weekend and we are now in 4th place for the season. The “Kids” on Realstone dominated the weekend winning the buoy racing, as well as the distance race.

280 boats participated in the Geneve-Rolle-Geneve. The starting line is about 2 miles long and divided into three parts. The multihulls, of which there are several classes amounting to about 50 boats, start on their own line. As last year, the going was quite light in the early part of the race up to Rolle. In fact, the wind was so light that up at Rolle, we drifted into the mark and had to make a penalty turn. On the return, a squall arrived and suddenly the boats were making 20 knots. The 32 mile race took about 5 hours and Artemis finished 6th.

Yesterday, the racing was delayed one hour and we finally got underway around 1230 in four knots of wind. Artemis Racing, with Torbjorn Tornqvist at the the helm, finished third in the one and only race of the day in as the wind dropped to two knots at the finish.

Next for the D35s is the Bol d’ Or next Saturday, 16 June. This is the big event on Lake Geneva and about 400 boats participate in the 90 mile circumnavigation of the Lake.

Paul

Stockholm 1912 Olympic Games Anniversary Invitational Sailing Regatta

I was in Stockholm today for a friendly regatta hosted by the 6M Class, part of the city’s week of celebrations commemorating the 100th anniversary of the 1912 Olympics. The International Olympic Committee Chairman, Jacques Rogge and the King of Sweden headlined the regatta here in the city centr.

A number of Olympic sailors took part including Torben Grael who happens to be the sailor who has won the most Olympic medals ever.

The competition was held in ten 6M boats. The crews were comprised of the boats’ owners, plus some famous Olympians from other sports and celebrity sailors.

Two races were held and the Artemis Racing team onboard Rebecca, belonging to Johan Larson, was the winner of the day with a 2, 1.

The sun was out and the temperature in the mid 20s C. When the weather is like this here, the Swedes come out in force. Sun worshiping is the main activity all over the city…the parks, along the bay, absolutely everywhere and everyone.

Tonight there is a gala dinner in the City Hall for 700 international Olympic delegates, hosted by the King and Queen of Sweden. Tomorrow, there is a big event for the public in the main football stadium where the Olympics were held in 1912.

I will be on the first flight out to Geneva tomorrow morning in hopes of making the 1300 start of the annual Geneve-Rolle-Geneve Race with my boss and friend Torbjorn Tornqvist in his D35.

Paul