Desafio Espanol began training yesterday on board its TP 52, which will make its debut in the first Audi Med Cup event, which starts on 12 May in Alicante.

During the last week, the support team completed the task of assembling the new boat and Desafio will continue its training, in Valencia, until the next Friday. Then team then leaves for Alicante for the first regatta of the season, from 12-17 May.

Many of the team that will participate in the circuit of TP 52 were sailing with Desafio during the last America’s Cup. The skipper will be Paul Cayard supported by Laureano Wizner and Terry Hutchinson, former Team New Zealand tactician. The crew includes John Cutler, Bruno Zirilli, Pedro Mas, Miguel Jáuregui, Enrique Cameselle, Diego Guigou, Pablo Rosano, Nacho Braquehais, Marcos Iglesias, Gustavo Vilariño, Christian Scherrer, Carlo Castellano, Jorge Ondo and Agustín Zulueta. – Thursday, 01 May 2008

With Paul Cayard as skipper Spain’s 32nd America’s Cup Challenger Series Semi Finalists plan to use the 2008 Audi MedCup Circuit to keep crew race sharp

With the key objective of keeping their sailing team together, sharp and active 32nd America’s Cup Challenger Series Semi Finalists Desafío-Iberdrola will launch a TP52 programme this season with a new Rolf Vrolijk-designed boat which will make its racing debut in Alic ante in May.

Desafío- Iberdrola CEO Agustín Zulueta explains:
“We chose the TP52 Class and the Audi MedCup Circuit because it is the world’s best racing circuit. It allows us to keep the crew not only working as a team, but closely.”

The new boat is on schedule at the moment. Recently painted and on its keel, the boat is unlikely to race at any regattas prior to the Trofeo Alicante, the first leg of the 2008 Audi MedCup Circuit (12-17 May), other than launching and training in Valencia with some other chosen teams.

The boat will feature the latest generation three spreader Southern Spars rig which will complement a North Sails sail programme run by Sandro Benigni and Nihat Aydin, authors of ACC yacht ESP-96’s sail programme during the last America’s Cup.

The crew of Desafío-Iberdrola will be skippered by American Paul Cayard whose talent is proven. In particular Cayard’s varied experience at the MedCup over the first two seasons of the Circuit will be an important factor in getting the boat and crew up to speed quickly.

Laureano Wizner will deputise for Cayard for some of the 2008 Audi MedCup regattas. John Cutler will be tactician while Bruno Fidili joins the team as navigator. The rest of the crew will rotate depending on availability and how the programme dovetails with other sailing campaigns the team have planned for 2008.

Of his objectives and expectations for the Desafío-Iberdrola TP52 team Zulueta says:
“Our goals are not strictly about racing and circuit results. Firstly, we want to maintain ourselves in action and keep race sharp. We are also looking to offer our sponsors some presence and return as well as offering them some interesting hospitality activities. We would like to finish the season in the top 5. We hope to be in the that leading league. Let?s hope we will play a part in contributing to an exciting season.”

Unfortunately, another day without wind and therefore, no racing. So, the final results have not changed since Thursday’s coastal race;

1. Valle Romano – Mean Machine-Peter de Ridder-17

2. Artemis-32

3. Patches-42

4. CaixiaGalicia-44

5. Windquest-Doug de Vos-49 points

Of course, not racing the final two days was a let down. But days one and two provided the most exhilarating racing the Breitling MedCup fleet has had in the three years since its inception.

Also the organization of the event, including shoreside hospitality, set a new standard in sailing. This event was organized by Lagos Sports of Lisbon, who intend to get more involved with high profile sailing in the coming years, including the World Sailing League, which is the project Russell Coutts and I have been working on.

Next stop for the TP’s is Hyeres, France in two weeks time.

For complete results go to: www.medcup.org

No race today… no wind. All races are postponed until Saturday.

However, there can not be a start after 1530 tomorrow.

For complete results, please visit www.medcup.org

No race today… no wind. All races are postponed until Saturday.

However, there can not be a start after 1530 tomorrow.

For complete results, please visit www.medcup.org

Today we had a 30 mile race around the bay of Portimao in winds that started out at 8 knots from 230 and finished up at 15 knots from 300. It wasn’t a smooth transition in the swing to the right…plenty of holes and reshuffling.

Onboard Windquest with Doug de Vos driving, we had good day finishing 5th in both parts. This was a two part race with a scoring gate half way.

Artemis was the early leader but went too far inshore on the second run and lost four places. Mean Machine gybed offshore along with us, Patches and the Russians. Just to give you an idea of how it was, inshore paid on the first run then it was horrible on the second run. Hard to know.

We are happy with our consistency so far in the regatta. Today’s fifths moves up two places to 5th overall in the Portugal Cup.

For complete scores go to: www.medcup.com

Two races today for the MedCup fleet. The wind struggled to find stability and we did not start the racing until 1500.

The first race of the day was held in a light seabreeze from 240. The wind generally went right except the left paid because of pressure. CaxiaGalicia won the race with Artimus second. We on windquest finished 6th.

For the second race, after another sizeable delay waiting for the wind to stabelize, we had 15-18 knots from 315. Smooth seas and sun made for another spectacular race. Mean Machine used their patented committee boat start to jump out to a big lead that they held to the finish. Bribon was second and Christabella third. We managed an 8th after getting bounced around (boats tacking on us) up the first winward leg. We are happy with our consistency. We would like to move a bit higher up the top 10 list. Still a long way to go this week.

We are now 7th overall on Windquest.

Tomorrow is the coastal race which will be two series of windward leeward legs joined in the middle by a 4-5 mile reaching leg.

For complete results go to www.medcup.org

Upon arriving up at the race village yesterday, all the sailors and teams were shocked to learn of the sudden death of Franco Rodino.

Franco was a lifelong photographer and sailing journalist from Italy. Franco suffered a heart attack in a RIB yesterday while out on the water doing what he loved to do…follow the races.

All of the TP52 fleet sends Franco’s family our sincerest condolences.

We had three races today in 16 to 28 knots. Top speeds of 22 knots were seen by all boats on the runs. With the offshore breeze, the sea was flat and the sky was clear and sunny. It was a beautiful day for the 19 boats here in Portimao.

The winner of the day was Valle Romano-Mean Machine with a 7th and two firsts. Second of the day was Artemis with Russell Coutts as tactician with a 2,3 and a 5. Third was CaixaGalicia with John Knostecki as tactician with a 3,4 and 10.

It was important to keep the boat upright during the gybes and almost everyone broached at least once.

We had a decent day on Windquest with a 10, 7 and 8 for 25 points, 8th overall. The fleet is tightly bunched in scoring with Siemens/Matador in 6th with 24 points and Stay Calm in 9th with 27 points.

It was a long day with the third race finishing at 1800. All the teams are still on their boats drying out the insides, folding sails, checking the rigs and it is 1915.

It all starts again tomorrow with the first warning at 1300. The forecast is for a bit less wind.

For complete results go to www.medcup.org

Super Siemens Champions

Press Release.

Issued by 2007 Breitling MedCup TP52 Circuit.

Regatta 3 of 5, 26th Copa del Rey Camper Audi.

Palma, Mallorca.

Saturday Aug 4th 2007-08-04Day 5 of 5.

SIEMENS MATADOR WINS TP 52 FLEET AT 26TH COPA DEL REY CAMPER AUDI.

Corporacion CxG Caixa Galicia retain overall lead on the 2007 Breitling MedCup TP52 Circuit.

Alberto Roemmers’ Argentinian owned, Spanish sponsored Siemens clinched the overall title in the 22 strong grand prix TP52 class at the 26th Copa del Rey Camper Audi today on the Bay of Palma.

Twenty years after he last won the Mediterranean’s premier trophy on the Maxi Il Moro di Venezia Paul Cayard called the tactics successfully for owner Roemmers and skipper-helmsman Guilermo Parada, winning a closely fought series by just six points from Vasco Vascotto’s 2005 Breitling MedCup winning team on Mutua Madrilena.

A fifth place in the first race today meant Siemens entered the final race of 10 with a five points lead over Mutua Madrilena.

Caught flat-footed on the start line Cayard conjured a third from a poor opening, while Mutua Madrilena’s pair of sixth places left them second with Roberto Bermudez de Castro’s Corporacion CxG Caix Galicia finishing third overall.

For the second successive regatta Torbjorn Tornqvist’s Artemis wins the Corinthian Trophy.

Caixa Galicia still lead the overall standings on the 2007 Breitling MedCup TP52 Circuit.

With the modest S’ly seabreeze fluctuating between six and 10 knots through the day the SM Juan Carlos skippered Bribon looked for all the world to have won the first race today and in so doing atoned for one minor error yesterday which cost them a victory when they misread the number of legs of the course.

But Bribon were judged to have started early and were disqualified, handing the race win to Kiki Sanchex and Santi Lopez’s CAM.

Bribon’s protest against their disqualification was later denied.

Peter de Ridder and the Valle Romano Mean Machine scored what has become something of a 2007 trademark, a final race victory when they bolted from the pin end of the line and were first into the left side advantage.

Siemens Matador’s owner Roemmers’ enthusiasm and dedication on board the Judel Vrolijk designed TP52 belies his 80 plus years.

His first title victory in the Copa del Rey complements a string of international successes with his Alexia yachts including the Maxi World Championships, the Giraglia, Fastnet and Newport to Bermuda Races.

It comes exactly one year after he gave the green light to skipper Guilermo Parada during last year’s Copa del Rey, to start up the TP52 project in the Matador name