Report on the Valparaiso Cup by Vicente Pablo Gimeno
From January 3rd to 8th 2006 the Valparaiso Cup was sailed in Valparaiso Chile with the Yacht Club de Chile as the Host Club. Nine teams from Argentina, Brazil and Chile got together to what was the first international Championship for the emerging Valparaiso Fleet.
5000 kilometers from Rio do Janeiro and 1800 Kilometeres from Buenos Aires, the Andes crossing with the boats at 3000 meters high was part of the great effort Brazilians and Argentineans made to make it to the first edition of the Valparaiso Cup. which marked the relaunch of the class as the last Star championship to be known sailed in Valparaiso was in 1960.
|Sergio Bonelli, Alejandro Chometowski and Nicolas Chernobilsky crossing the Andes on the way to Valparaiso. Click for larger image.|
Seven races were Scheduled and seven races were sailed.
Race 1 saw some strongs winds, 25 knots from SW. On the way to the starting line 3 teams broke their boats and couldn't make it to the starting line. Right after the start, Brazilian Gastao Brun broke his mast right at the jib box and had to retire as well as Julio Labandeira from Argentina who broke an intermediate shroud.
Race 2: The wind dropped a bit to 18 knots, Labandeira managed to start within limit time and so 4 boats managed to finish the second race of the day. Chometowski had to retire with a problem on his lower shrouds.
Race 3, the wind was blowing some 22 knots from S/SW, 2 teams retired. There was another race scheduled for Day 2 but the Race Commitee decided to drop it as the wind was increasing up to 35 knots, and wasn't very steady.
Race 4: light winds from SW, 6 knots, cloudy skies. It was a very complicated race as the wind at the starting line was very steady but after 5 minutes of sailing the wind was completely erratical and random with the shifts. The usual appraoch in this condition is to go left and everybody took this way except Montero who took the right and won the race. Special mention goest to Pascolatto who was well back in the pack approximately one leg behind and then managed to finish in 4th place in a very close finish with Gimeno and Labandeira.
Clear skies, 14 knots from SW, one Chilean team broke mast before the start so there were only 7 boats in race 5.
Clear skies, the wind moved to the south, and became very shifty making the race a bit interesting as it was very difficult to read the course. Winner was pascolatto with Chometowski finishing in second.
Race 7: This was the final race with 6 boats at the starting line and again the wind was blowing from the SW at 14/16 knots, very steady conditions with a bit of chop and cold water. The race was won by Labandeira from Argentina with Chometowski finishing in second.
To us in Chile this championship meant a lot and the presence of the Argentinean and Brazilian teams helped greatly to give the class a more serious approach in its relaunching in Chile. The camaraderie was great, and the wind great as well.
Sadly Gastao Brun broke his mast on the first race and didnt have spare so had to retire, it was great to have him here.
Currently in Chile we intend to bring the Star Class Southamerican Championship 2007 to Valparaiso, and the Valparaiso Cup was in a way a mode of testing our capabilities as an organizing club.
We hope to keep growing the Valparaiso fleet in the near future and hopefully bring the SA's 2007 to Chile.