Luna Rossa Ita 74 Has The Best Over OneWorld

Published: Thu 12 Dec 2002 09:42 AM
DECEMBER 11, 2002
A grey and rainy day today for race number two of the Louis Vuitton Cup 2002-2003 semifinals, raced on a best of seven series. The match between Luna Rossa ITA 74 and OneWorld USA 67 starts on time at
13:15. Rod Davis takes the left and Spithill the right in a fairly even start across the line.
The boats are both on starboard in 10 knots of westerly breeze as they launch into the first beat. The wind shifts slightly to the right favouring the Americans. Halfway through the beat Francesco de Angelis is able to close on USA 67. James Spithill tacks away to the right and Luna Rossa decides not to cover, heading straight for the port lay-line. The two yachts are bow to bow, then the breeze shifts right again and USA 67 stretches over ITA 74. Both boats have overstood the lay line and OneWorld rounds the first mark with a 21 seconds lead over Luna Rossa.
First downwind run. Dark clouds with stronger wind are approaching and the breeze increases to 14 knots. Both boats hoist the asymmetrical sail (gennaker). Francesco de Angelis chases USA 67. Halfway through the leg the Italians gybe to the left and OneWorld does not cover. Luna Rossa attacks again with a series of gybes. At the bottom mark USA 67 is still in the lead and ITA 74 trails by 17 seconds. Second beat. Immediately after the mark Luna Rossa tacks away to the left side of the course. USA 67 decides not to cover and sails to the right.
The two boats now have a lateral separation of over 500 metres. Spithill tacks back. The wind shifts to the left favouring Luna Rossa who is able to close the gap and overtake her opponent. The visibility is very poor due to low clouds and drizzly rain. The wind is extremely shifty and USA 67 is back in the lead. At the third mark rounding USA 67 is ahead of Luna Rossa by 29 seconds.
Second gennaker run. Michele Ivaldi, strategist on Luna Rossa, climbs up the mast to look out for the puffs of wind. Francesco de Angelis heads to the left and USA 67 opts not to cover, keeping to the right. Luna Rossa, now with a lateral separation on USA 67 over 1000 metres, gains over her opponent and takes the lead. However, when ITA 74 gybes the lead goes back to the Americans. At the fourth mark rounding USA 67 is leading by 38 seconds.
Third and final beat upwind. There are now 11 knots of wind. Luna Rossa attacks with a series of tacks and plays well the frequent wind shifts, with Torben Grael calling the tactics. Towards the end of the leg Francesco de Angelis, on the port lay line, takes the lead. At the last mark rounding Luna Rossa is in the lead by 28 seconds.
Third and final run. Both crews hoist the gennaker. There are 13 knots of wind. Francesco de Angelis defends well his lead by always positioning himself between the finish line and his opponent. Luna Rossa goes to win the race by 20 seconds.
TODAY'S RESULTS - every victory equals 1 point
Match 2 Luna Rossa ITA 74 wins against OneWorld USA 67 (20" lead)
Match 1 Alinghi SUI 64 wins against Oracle BMW Racing USA 76 (29" lead)
Alinghi (2) - Oracle BMW Racing (0)
Prada Challenge (1) - OneWorld * (1)
* One point penalty to be applied to OW (Arbitration Panel decision, December 9, 2002).
Windward leeward, 18.5 miles long; six legs total, three windward legs and three downwind legs; first and last legs are 3.25 miles, the remaining four are 3.00 miles.
Wind from W 12-15 knots. Mostly cloudy with a few showers in the morning. Becoming mainly sunny.
TODAY'S CREW ON LUNA ROSSA 1. Bowman, Paolo Bassani 2. Mid bowman, Massimiliano Sirena 3. Mastman, Simone de Mari 4. Pitman, Cristian Griggio 5. Left grinder, Massimo Galli 6. Right grinder, Romolo Ranieri 7. Upwind trimmer, Lorenzo Mazza 8. Downwind trimmer, Andrew Hemmings 9. Mainsail trimmer, Sean Clarkson 10.Center grinder, Massimo Gherarducci 11.Helmsman, Francesco de Angelis 12.Tactician, Torben Grael 13.Afterguard, Rod Davis 14.Downwind grinder, Steve Erickson 15.Strategist, Michele Ivaldi 16.Navigator, Matteo Plazzi 17. 17th Man, Tuan Allsop *
* Old time friend of Vernon Neville (athletic trainer of team Prada). Tuan, 30 years old, is originally from South Africa and is now a New Zealand citizen. He is a former top level judo player.
Match 1 Alinghi SUI 64 versus Oracle BMW Racing USA 76
Match 2 OneWorld USA 67 versus Luna Rossa ITA 74
Wind from NW 15 becoming N 18-21. Cloudy, showers.

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