Interview with Pierre Pennec, skipper of Edmond de Rothschild Group
What is your analysis of the day’s racing?
“Though we lost a place in the provisional standing, it’s been a good day because the head of the fleet has bunched together. Yesterday, Red Bull was impressive and their performance was virtually flawless. Today, we made up some precious points on them. The Omanis sailed a blinder, with three race wins for Oman Air and one for The Wave out of the seven raced. On our side, we did some very solid manoeuvres, which notably enabled us to snatch a first place in the penultimate race of the afternoon. We linked together some reaching starts (wind on the beam) and that was an area for concern during our previous Grand Prix. However, we’ve really progressed well in this phase of the game and, even though I’ve still got to work on getting all that down to a T, things are moving in the right direction.”
You spoke yesterday about having to hone the manoeuvres, were things more fluid today?
“I’m really satisfied with the work accomplished by the whole crew aboard Edmond de Rothschild Group. Yesterday my crew found that we were lacking practice but that’s their perfectionist aspects kicking in (laughs)! Things are going brilliantly… The general spirit is positive and dynamic! We’re in a very positive phase right now and on a personal level I’m very at ease in the group. I’m confident about our ability and I really hope that this Grand Prix will enable us to demonstrate the potential we have.”
If you could express one criticism about the way you sailed today, what would it be?
“It’s not so much a criticism but more a regret about the final race. We overshot the start line. There was nothing in it but these things happen. Aboard the boat, the guys gave their all and we still managed to snatch fifth place in the race despite being last at the start. However, we have to move on from this, as it’s just one race. There are still a lot more for us to contest over the next two days and it’s more important to save our energy for those.”
An exceptional setting in an unusual format
Tomorrow the Extreme Sailing Series fleet will compete in a slightly different programme to normal. Indeed the eight crews will leave the port shortly before 1000 hours to compete in two coastal courses in the Bosphorus Strait. The first warning signal is scheduled for 1015 hours (0715 UTC). Though the points awarded for these races will be identical to those contested in the stadium this afternoon, they’ll enable the sailors to put their steeds to the test in an unusual format for this circuit and to treat themselves to some long tacks, which will favour speed as they dart along the majestic shores of the Bosphorus.
Standing for the Istanbul Grand Prix after the second day (thirteen races run)
- The Wave Muscat - 74 points
- Red Bull Sailing Team – 73 points
- Oman Air - 69 points
- Edmond de Rothschild Group- 66 points
- SAP Extreme Sailing Team - 53 points
- Alinghi - 49 points
- GAC Pindar - 45 points
- Zoulou - 39 points
The crew of Edmond de Rothschild Group
Pierre Pennec (Skipper / helmsman),
Christophe Espagnon (trimmer and mainsail traveller),
Hervé Cunningham (headsail trimmer),
Bernard Labro (Bowman)
Romain Petit (trimmer)
Tanguy Leglatin (Sports coach)