Friday, June 3, 2016

HM HOTELS Spanish J/80 Champion

J/80 HM Hotels wins Spanish Nationals (Barcelona, Spain)- With the J/80 World Championship at Sotogrande Marina on the horizon nobody wanted to lose the opportunity to measure their performance at the Spanish J/80 Championship in Barcelona.  With more than fifty teams registered for the Worlds to be sailed in the waters of San Roque from June 25th to July 2nd, it was going to be a great opportunity to test the crew, the boat, the sails and tactics.  Several teams from Italy, France, Russia, Germany and the United Kingdom were present in the Sotogrande Marina.  The tenth edition of the Spanish J/80 Championship was organized by the Real Club Nautico de Barcelona.

J/80 sailing Spanish Nationals off Barcelona, SpainAfter a brutal nine race series with one discard, the Balearic team of HM HOTELS skippered by Javier Chacartegui took the national title in a hotly contested championship; in fact, they were not declared winners until after crossing the finish line in the last race to win by only one point! The Catalan team of Marc De Antonio sailed their famous BRIBON-MOVISTAR into second place with 27 pts and just one more point back taking third on the podium was José Maria van der Ploeg’s NAUTICA WATCHES!  It was an intense finale, not surprising given that two former J/80 World Champions were dueling it out to the finish!

The three days of racing provided a constant battle between the top three teams. On the first day, the provisional leadership was the Balearic HM HOTELS, followed by the Catalan NAUTICA WATHCES and the French team COURRIER JUNIOR skippered by Eric Brezellec.  After the second day of racing, the tables flip-flopped in the top three; Van der Ploeg’s NAUTICA WATCHES was winning followed by De Antonio’s BRIBON-MOVISTAR in second and HM HOTELS third.

After a disastrous second day, dropping out of the top ten, Brezellec’s French crew COURRIER JUNIOR acquitted themselves nicely and posted a closing day 5-5-3 scoreline to jump back into 6th place.  Similarly, yet another J/80 World Champion, Iker Martinez skippering BIDASOA-MOVISTAR overcame a nasty second day to post a 2-6-1 to secure 4th overall.   Sailing photo credits- Carlos Pich   For more Spanish J/80 Championship sailing information