The most competitive season in the history of the Extreme Sailing Series got even more intense in Qingdao on Monday, as the young sailors of Great Britain’s Land Rover BAR Academy shook up the standings by finishing in second place behind a triumphant Alinghi of Switzerland. The Swiss – two-time America’s Cup winners who had finished second at the season opener in Muscat – were untouchable, sailing a textbook regatta in Qingdao’s “Mazarin Cup” despite variable conditions that ranged from light breezes on Day One and Day Three (and no wind or racing on Day Two) to constant winds that made for a thrilling foiling confrontation in Monday’s final action.
In only their second season in the stadium racing series, Land Rover BAR (Ben Ainslie Racing) Academy jumped up to second place on Day Three with six podiums in seven races – including two wins – and they hung on under pressure in the finals to stand in the runner-up spot of an Extreme Sailing Series regatta for the very first time.
“Congratulations to Land Rover BAR! What a great performance from this young team. They are clearly one of the favorites for the upcoming Red Bull Youth America’s Cup in Bermuda,” said Red Bull Sailing skipper Roman Hagara, who with Hans Peter Steinacher is Sport Director for June’s youth regatta on Bermuda’s Great Sound.
Oman Air (OMA) earned third place for the second Extreme Sailing Series act in a row, while SAP Extreme Sailing (DEN), which had won the opener in Muscat, finished off the podium in fourth. Red Bull Sailing, picked as another favorite for overall honors this year after finishing third in 2015 and 2016, earned two race wins in taking fifth place in Qingdao, a result that didn’t satisfy their tactician Steinacher, who is already looking to the third regatta in the eight-stop series.
“Here in China we did not perform to our level,” said the Austrian, who previously won two Olympic Gold Medals with Hagara. “We need to forget this regatta and concentrate on preparations for the next one.”
The Extreme Sailing Series will next return to one of the world’s most spectacular harbor destinations with Act Three in Portugal’s Madeira Islands on 29 June–2 July, 2017.
Results Act 2, Qingdao, China: 1. Alinghi (SUI) 184 points, 2. Land Rover BAR Academy (GBR) 173 pts, 3. Oman Air (OMA) 168 pts, 4. SAP Extreme Sailing (DEN) 168 pts, 5. Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) 166 pts, 6. NZL Extreme Sailing Team (NZL) 164 pts, 7. Team Extreme (CHN) 121 pts
Overall ranking after two of eight acts: 1. Alinghi (SUI) 23 points, 2. SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) 21 pts, 3. Oman Air (OMA) 20 pts, 4. Land Rover BAR Academy (GBR) 18 pts, 5. Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) 17 pts, 6. NZ Extreme Sailing Team (NZL) 15 pts
Pictures free for editorial use. Xaume Olleros for Red Bull Content Pool
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Contact: Mario Schoby / +436646385997 / email@example.com
About Roman Hagara and Hans Peter Steinacher
Roman Hagara and Hans Peter Steinacher are Austria’s most successful summer sport athletes, having won two Olympic gold medals (Sydney, Athens) and numerous world championships. They are the only Austrians to have competed on the America’s Cup World Series. Determined to see sailing progress to the next level, they groom the next generation of sailors by leading the Red Bull Sailing Team in the Extreme Sailing Series and by serving as sports directors for Red Bull Foiling Generation and the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup.
About the Extreme Sailing Series 2017
With eight events spanning three continents, the Extreme Sailing Series brings the action right to the public, with stadium sailing on foiling catamarans in the heart of vibrant global cities. Schedule 2017:
8-11 March: Muscat, Oman
28 April-1 May: Qingdao, China
29 June-2 July: Madeira Islands, Portugal
20-23 July: Europe TBA
10-13 August: Hamburg, Germany
25-28 August: Cardiff, UK
19-22 October: San Diego, USA
30 November-3 December: Los Cabos, Mexico