The last 24 hours of the Class 40 Championship Race ‘Les Sables – Horta – Les Sables’ has seen offshore racing at its finest. The high level of competition ensured an inevitable battle for overall victory between Leg 1 winner Tales II and Imerys.
The grit of both teams to defend and conquer was evident throughout the entire 2,895 nautical mile course, with only 13 minutes between the winners, Tales II, and Imerys hot on their tail. This highly tactical race confronted skippers with extreme sailing at both ends of the spectrum from a slow side-step around no-wind zones in the Azores High, to propelling across the Atlantic in 30-40 knot gusts. Successful in catching a weather system to push the team with the leading pack to Les Sables, team Imerys made a remarkable race sailing in podium position against the new Mach 3 Aina and Tales II, renowned for its rocket speeds.
Phil Sharp, Skipper of Imerys commented: “The entire race has been ruthlessly competitive, and it all came down to the wire in the last 24 hours. Biscay gave us a wild and fast downwind sprint in speeds of over 20 knots, which was immensely fun, but conditions were very challenging with endless very short and steep waves that sent us nose diving repeatedly.”
“Overall we’re pleased to have made a strong result and we had a great time racing in such high competition. In fact, one night in the Atlantic we had a near collision with Tales II, so the racing really was close!” Phil continued.
Three podium results in the Class 40 Championship, and two races remaining. Pablo Santurde, skipper of Tales II has teamed up with Phil to take on both the Rolex Fastnet Race starting on 6th August, and the infamous Transat Jacques Vabre race to Salvador, Brazil in November.
ALC are proud supporters of Phil Sharp Racing
2017 Class 40 Championship Race Programme
April 29th – May 1st: Grand Prix Guyader: 1st Phil Sharp Racing/ Imerys
May 14th – May 21st: Normandy Channel Race: 1st Phil Sharp Racing/ Imerys
July 2nd – July 20th: Les Sables – Horta – Les Sables: 2nd Phil Sharp Racing/ Imerys
6th – 11th August: Rolex Fastnet Race
5th – 30th November 2017: Transat Jacques Vabre