Team Zaoli Sailors claimed a leaderboard domination at the 39th International Spring Cup in Marseille, France by securing the top four places.
The 11 races series was fought out over 4 days, hosted at Yachting Club de la Pointe Rouge. Attractingmany of the world’s top 470 teams from 23 nations, the racing line-up was tough with men and women racing together in one fleet. Amongst many of the big names were, London 2012 Olympic Gold Medallist and five time 470 World Champion Mat Belcher and crew Will Ryan, as well as New Zealand’s 2012 Olympic gold winning team of Jo Aleh/Polly Powrie.
Headlining the Team Zaoli sailors racing at the 39th Spring Cup were Sofian Bouvet/Jeremie Mion of France, who converted their 2nd place going into the final day into an overall victory. The pair know what it takes to win and hold an impressive pedigree in the 470 Class, launching their senior racing career with back to back wins as 470 Junior World and 470 Junior European Champions in 2009 and 2010.
Joining the French on the podium were Israel’s Eyal Levin/Dan Froylich, whose second overall performance is the best yet for their new partnership. Finishing third overall were seasoned campaigners, Sime Fantela/Igor Marenic from Croatia, who last faced Bouvet/Mion at the Zaoli Sails training camp in San Remo last month, so knew exactly what they were up against. The Croatians pushed hard, getting ahead of the French in the first race of the day, but they had too much of a points deficit to overhaul them, and settled very happily for third overall in their first competitive appearance of 2015.
Germany’s Ferdinand Gerz/Oliver Szymanski had a rollercoaster of a final day, going into it with a 2 point advantage over the French. The 3 races didn’t start well for them, as they opened their assault with a 27th place finish and plummeted down the leaderboard. From there, it was virtually impossible to recover to a podium spot, so the team were more than content to climb back up to finish in 4th overall.
“This is a great finish for our Team Zaoli sailors,“ said Andrea Mannini. “We have worked very closely with the teams ahead of the 2015 racing season to ensure they are getting optimum performance from their sails. I attend all the major events to provide back-up and support, and it was a proud moment to witness such an overwhelming success. One, two, three and four on the leaderboard is a fantastic result for the teams and Zaoli Sails.”
The next major event for Team Zaoli is ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres in France.