Holding ready at the same location, Neptune Racing hit the water for the second week at Lago di Ledro, this time though contesting the OM Match Cup (Grade 2), a higher graded regatta than the World University Championships, putting many more ranking points at stake.
This event saw a highly competitive field, which included 3 competitors ranked inside the top 20 of ISAF rankings! We were the 4th ranked team going into the event, but having had a week sailing the boats and becoming accustomed to the conditions, we knew our performance would be strong.
The regatta got underway in what we now understood as typical conditions for Ledro: light and inconsistent. Unfortunately, this meant that after two days of three day regatta only five matches had been completed for each team. Luckily, there was a contingency plan in place, which split teams into two groups, based upon the ranking of the teams.
Whilst the race committee took the night to decide on how to move forward after the limited racing, the sailors had built up a fair amount of energy sitting around, and we needed somewhere to let it out. Fortunately, with Italy being as soccer crazed as it is we managed to find a small turf, where egos and bragging rights were put on the line between the three Australian teams. After losing track of score early on, Neptune Racing/Team Griffin edged out Redline Racing (Team Jerwood)/Neptune Racing in a golden goal. We’re not sure how each individual is handling it, but we hear a rematch could be in the works for next time these teams meet!
Looking back on the water, we had sailed ourselves into a 4 wins, 1 loss scorecard, placing us second in our group (group A), and qualifying for the semi-finals! The top skipper of group A was Nicolai Sehested (ISAF Rank 7). Whilst in group B Victor Ogeman (ISAF Rank 19) qualified first, and Perth sailors Matt Jerwood and team (ISAF Rank 153) came in second to also qualify for the semi-finals.
We managed to get up 2-1 in a close semi-final against Ogeman, qualifying for the final against Sehested, who had beaten Jerwood 2-0 in the other semi-final.
The final saw some tight action and close races, but unfortunately it was Sehestad who came out 2-0 in the final.
It was a disappointing end to a positive week of sailing, though another second place is something the team is happy with moving forwards. Now, Adam and Sam turn their attention to the Governor’s Cup in Newport Beach, California with a midnight flight out of Milan, straight to the USA! Chris and Jack have a week exploring Europe, and the team will join on the 22nd of July, for the Youth World Championships in Helsinki.
The team must give a huge thank you to Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club for all their ongoing support, as well as the Ron Tough Yachting Foundation, Zhik and the Department of Sport and Recreation Western Australia. Without all of these supporters it would be impossible to be here, and we’re really excited with how everything is going.