August 9, 2009

Powerboat P1 - Sweden GP SW1 Capital Double, SNAV OSG third GP

It was a weekend of difficult racing for P1 in the Sweden Grand Prix, which ended with a spectacular incident to the 77 Lucas Oil on the Sunday Endurance race in Evolution. The violent barrel roll to the Outerlimits boat thankfully resulted again in only minor injuries to pilots Nigel Hook and Joe Sgro. This is the second major incident of the season, altough this time the 77 Lucas Oil unlike the 53 Metamarine Pignolo has been declared total loss. Many teams complained at the difficulty of this course saying there was no place to overtake and too much curves. Among the complainers was the barrell rolled 77 Lucas Oil as well as Supersport title winners 43 Seagull Chaudron. In Evolution class the hunt to catch class leaders 47 Silverline continues and 88 SNAV OSG seems to have got closer thanks to a win and a second place. Supersport class finally gave full showing of 26 Team SW1 Capital speed, with the British team being second to make a full double win in a Grand Prix this year, after 88 SNAV OSG achieved this in San Benedetto del Tronto. 38 Baia Attolini who waited a month to make the hunt to 43 Seagull Chaudron surely would have gone out dissapointed as they lost a further ten points due to a speed penalty in the second race. Still the title is within there grasps, and I am sure the Ukranian team can feel the breath of the Italian squad with only a 28 points advantage. Now is for the last two races in a months time in the specatacular Syracuse in the biggest meditterranean island of Sicily, in the unpredictable and often rough Ionian sea.
33 Furnibo boat registered the quickest time in the PowerPole qualifying session making the first foray in the Fountain boat posting a time of 02:39.09. Despite the 10 Cigarette Smash Poker hull setting the early pace, it was the all-Belgian outfit who claimed their first PowerPole of 2009. Hemelaer, stepped aside to make way for van Riet, lavished praise on his compatriot. Hemelaer confirmed he will be returning to the cockpit for Saturday's Sprint race. Evolution-class leaders 47 Silverline endured a qualifying period to forget after sustaining a problem on their lap, but there misfortune were partially capitalised upon by Championship challengers 88 SNAV OSG took the second quickest time. 66 Cranefields Wine and 77 Lucas Oil Outerlimits also failed to register a qualifying time after picking up technical problems. In SuperSport 38 Baia Attolini sounded a warning to the 43 Seagull Chaudron after recording their second-straight PowerPole after a devastating qualifying lap in Sweden. As a result of the 03:10.02 lap secured the Italian team consisting of Acanfora, Renato Guidi and Roy Capasso will have first choice of lane for the tricky Gothenburg course. And Acanfora believes the result heaps pressure to the Seagull hull. The current World Champions in the Seagull Chaudron registered the second fastest time, finishing just over a second behind the front-runners. British team 26 Team SW1 Capital complete the top three after a solid qualifying session which saw them record an average speed of 75.87mph across the 4.09 nautical mile course. 17 MasForce and 22 Big Sergio were fourth and fifth fastest. 28 Blue Shaft were unable to complete its lap due to technical difficulties while engine failure put paid to the hopes of the all-female 44 Iko Casa.
Evolution Race 7
Fans turned out in their thousands in Langedrag to watch 10 SNAV OSG take their third consecutive victory and narrow the gap at the top of the Powerboat P1 World Championship Evolution-class standings. It was heartache for PowerPole sitters 33 Furnibo boat after an engine blew, denying them the opportunity to complete the start lap and ultimately cost them the chance to challenge for the overall title. A pacy opening lap saw 77 Lucas Oil Outerlimits boat post the quickest time and open a considerable lead over in-form SNAV OSG, 66 Cranefields Wine and 10 Cigarette Smash Poker. However, the American boat slowed up noticably during the sixth lap of the 48.84 nautical miles course to allow first, SNAV OSG's and then Cigarette Smash Poker, to pass without a challenge. By then, 33 Furnibo who earlier threatened an upset to take their first win of the season after a lightning start had been forced to retire from the race after the engines in the Cranefields Wine boat shut down at the beginning of the fourth lap of the race. Championship leaders 47 Silverline eked out another 73 points after finishing fourth, capitalising on the the misfortunes of Furnibo and Cranefields Wine.
Evolution Race 8
A drama-filled Endurance race in the Evolution-class eventually saw 33 Furnibo claim its maiden victory of the 2009 season. After 10 laps of the 19 lap race, the Belgian crew of Pierre Colpin and Frank Hemelaer held a six-second lead from the 77 Lucas Oil Outerlimits boat. However, the Lucas Oil boat, with Nigel Hook and Joe Sgro on board, barel-rolled the hull in front of the watching spectators to force race control to enforce a red flag. Upon resumption and with the race shortened to seven laps, PowerPole sitters Furnibo held off the challenge of SNAV OSG Outerlimits boat to secure maximum points. The 10 Cigarette Smash Poker boat took the final podium spot ahead of Championship leaders 47 Silverline, who haul another 73 points which move a step closer to securing the title in their maiden season in the Evolution-class.
SuperSport Race 7
The MAS FORCE SPIRIT OF BELGIUM team were delighted to be second in a race that stressed tight turns and attentive driving. The team's Mercury-powered 38' Nor-Tech took advantage of a slight error on the very fast Italian BAIA ALTOLLINI team, made a tactical turn and forced the Donzi to the outside and took over second in the ninth of ten laps. It was a tough shot for the Italians who had fought back and forth with their fellow 38 ZR Donzi British SW1 CAPITAL team for first and second place in the early laps. But SW1 Capital were not to be denied today and took a commanding lead from the third lap on. Though wakes from commercial vessels were not a factor, a police boat caused a wake that caught SW1 CAPITAL by surprise and gave the BAIA team a chance to pass them in the beginning of the race. Others were not so pleased with the course. Current World Champions from the SuperSport SEAGULL, SPIRT OF THE UKRAINE, a 41' Ilmor-powered Chaudron that never broke out of its fourth place, said the course was not very idle for them.
SuperSport Race 8
26 Team SW1 Capital continued its dominance of the SuperSport class at the Scandinavian Grand Prix of the Sea to post its second race win. A drizzly Gothenburg failed to dampen the spirits of the all-British crew as they led the 77 nautical mile race from start to finish to claim 100 points and cap a perfect weekend. Title rivals 38 Baia Attolini and 43 Seagull Chaudron were involved in a monumental tussle for second place on the tight Stena Curve at the North East of the racecourse on the start lap. It was a battle ultimately won by PowerPole sitters Baia Attolini as they sensationally blocked the World Champions from taking the inside line to take second place a position they would not relinquish for the remaining 18 laps to close the gap at the top of the SuperSport standings by another nine points. The lack of rough waters prevented the 17 Spirit of Belgium from maintaining a genuine challenge for leadership of the race eventually succumbing after encountering technical difficulties. Team Al and Al's 28 Blue Shaft were forced to retire seven laps into the race after taking on water while 22 Big Sergio were forced to pull out two laps later. Local wild card entry 82 Goldfish finished the race in a creditable fourth.
1 88 SNAV OSG 00:33:05:34
2 10 Cigarette Smash Poker 00:33:05.34
3 77 Lucas Oil Outerlimits 00:35:08.37
4 47 Silverline 00:33:39.09 -1 lap
5 66 Cranefields Wine DNF
6 33 Furnibo DNF
1 33 Furnibo 00:45:28.10
2 88 SNAV OSG 00:46:57.20
3 10 Cigarette Smash Poker 00:48:06.08
4 47 Silverline 00:50:07.64 -1 lap
5 77 Lucas Oil Outerlimits DNF
6 66 Cranefields Wine DNF
1 26 Team SW1 Capital 00:35:33.00
2 17 MasForce 00:35:59.88
3 38 Baia Attolini
4 43 Seagull Chaudron 00:36:09.88
5 22 Big Sergio 00:37:38.67
6 82 Goldfish 00:38:11.30
7 28 Blue Shaft 00:36:44.23
8 44 Iko Casa DNS
1 26 Team SW1 Capital 01:00:49.63
2 43 Seagull Chaudron 01:01:24.70
3 38 Baia Attolini 01:03:33.66 +02:30.00 Penalty
4 82 Goldfish 01:02:14.55 -1 lap
5 17 MasForce 01:04:26.28 +03:00.00 Penalty
6 22 Big Sergio 00:30:32.86 -3 laps
7 28 Blue Shaft 00:26:19.27
8 44 Iko Casa DNS

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