2005 Rolex Farr 40 World Championship
March 1 - 4, 2005
Evolution clinches the championship on countback
Richard Perini's Evolution won the Rolex Farr 40 Worlds by a hair's breadth from fellow Aussie Neville Crichton on Shockwave. With both teams finishing equal on 66 points, it was Evolution's race win in the windy conditions two days earlier that gave her overall victory ahead of Shockwave. And just a point further behind the two Aussies was the Italian boat TWT, whose 6th place in the final race dragged her right back into contention.
Peter Reggio squeezed out three races in light and fickle conditions today on the rolling swell of the Pacific Ocean. Evolution extended her lead from Day 3 of just 1 point to a much healthier 12 points going into the last race, thanks to scores of 9- 2. The championship seemed all but secured for Perini, but the wind had reached its most unpredictable for the finale.
Evolution did not have a great first beat, and rounded the windward mark in 15th, ten places behind Shockwave and three behind TWT. Surely Perini would pull through the fleet and close out the regatta. It certainly appeared so by the leeward gate, with Evolution pulling up to 13th, just two behind TWT and seven behind Shockwave.
Neville Crichton's boat did herself no favours by yielding four places up the final beat to round in 10th place, with TWT among those to have overtaken her. But Evolution was having a terrible time of the conditions, falling to 19th. She was still leading the championship but she could not afford any more mistakes. However, the final run saw her fall to 21st as she lurched her way towards the finish from out to sea. She scraped across the line just seven seconds ahead of Panther. Seven seconds further back and Perini would have come 3rd overall.
So close was the championship that Perini says it was a good 10 minutes after the finish before he knew that he had won the Rolex Farr 40 Worlds. “We like keeping the crowds in suspense,” said a much-relieved Perini afterwards, who admitted he hadn't enjoyed the last race one bit.
Tactician Hamish Pepper said: “Evolution didn't spark up like she usually does. The stress levels were pretty high, and we were just trying to figure out what we needed to do down that last run.”
Pepper's opposite number on Team Shockwave, Michael Coxon, said the crew were delighted with their performance despite having missed the world title by such a tantalising margin. “You can look back on plenty of times when you could have gained that extra point,” he said, “but I'm sure Evolution and TWT can do the same. We started off the week in 9th and we climbed the rankings every day.”
Marco Rodolfi's TWT team took defeat in good spirits, but were ruing their poor start to the final day when they scored a 16th place. They were certainly one of the few overseas boats to be able to match the Aussies on their tricky home waters. Last year's World Champion Barking Mad earned themselves a consolation prize by winning the final race by almost two minutes, but the American team were deeply disappointed with their 6th place overall.
Tactician Terry Hutchinson said: “I think we sailed better here than we did in San Francisco. You look at the results and that tells a story, but we passed a lot of boats in a lot of these races.” If the World Championship was awarded on how many boats you could pass during the course of a race, then Barking Mad would have won because their ability to climb through the fleet was immense.”
But being over early in one race and other errors prevented the Americans from ever mounting a strong defence of the title. Collectively as a team we have sailed better, but things haven't gone our way,” said Hutchinson. “It's a game of inches, and we've been just the wrong side of those small margins.”
The difficult waves outside Sydney Heads called for maximum concentration from the crew, and it prevented many of the favourites from hitting their stride. It is perhaps significant that the last three World Championships - in Italy, USA and now Australia - have all been won by teams from the host nation. This was particularly the case with the rolling swell of Sydney. “The conditions were certainly a factor,” said Perini of his and Shockwave's success in a strong international fleet of 28 boats. “The Aussie 1 - 2 is just fabulous. What a great result for Australia.”
After the stress of the final day's racing, Richard Perini returned to a triumphant welcome at the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia. Richard de Leyser Managing Director of Rolex Australia presented the winning skipper with a Rolex Yachtmaster in rolesium. Hamish Pepper sprayed the team with champagne and then his skipper was given the traditional dunking as he was thrown off the side of the boat. Perini and the Evolution crew will formally receive the World Championship trophy tonight at a prizegiving reception being held at the Water's Edge Restaurant beneath the Harbour Bridge in Sydney.
Today was the Rolex Race Day. Supporting Sponsors of the Farr 40 Class and Rolex Farr 40 Worlds include Lewmar and North Sails, along with Contributing Sponsor, Club Marine Insurance.
Complete Final Results:
|Bow No.||Yacht Name||Sail||Owners Name||R1||R2||R3||R4||R5||R6||R7||R8||R9||Total||Place|
|1||Team Shockwave||AUS5077||Neville Crichton||4||17||2||3||15||6||4||6||9||66||2|
|24||Warpath||USA69||Steve and Fred Howe||10||3||21||10||3||7||6||1||11||72||4|
|14||Mascalzone Latino||ITA1||Vincenzo Onorato||6||11||4||8||9||18||3||4||12||75||5|
|21||Barking Mad||USA 50995||Jim Richardson||8||14||13||14||4||5||13||8||1||80||6|
|6||Ichi Ban||AUS6038||Matt Allen||1||1||14||20||5||14||10||15||7||87||7|
|27||Southern Star||AUS1770||John Calvert-Jones||13||10||5||13||14||1||1||11||20||88||8|
|8||Nerone||ITA1972||Massimo Mezzaroma/Antonio Sodo Migliori||11||8||11||4||7||9||5||9||25||89||9|
|10||Morning Glory||GR40101||Hasso Plattner||9||6||3||9||10||17||14||20||4||92||10|
|15||Emotional Hooligan||AUS615||Marcus Blackmore||17||4||6||6||13||2||22||5||28||103||11|
|11||Joe Fly||ITA1805||Giovanni Maspero||16||20||10||16||2||15||8||17||3||107||12|
|13||Norwegian Steam||NOR40||Eivind Astrup||18||5||7||7||16||27||17||12||5||114||13|
|16||Twins 2||FRA 007||Erik Maris||21||15||15||19||18||12||2||13||18||133||15|
|20||Brighton Star||B2000||David Gotze||22||26||24||2||8||23||19||21||2||147||17|
|4||Belle Property||AUS470||Chris Meehan||19||27||17||22||22||22||23||3||8 1||63||19|
|22||War Games||YC222||David Urry||20||19||19||23||12||4||26||27||19||169||21|
|26||Nanoq||DEN7217||HRH Crown Prince Frederik||23||21||15||24||28||26||7||16||16||176||23|
|5||Bobby’s Girl||NZL40010||John Melville||28||13||25||12||25||16||21||24||15||179||24|
|25||Venom||USA40063||Brett Neill/Peter Taylor||24||24||27||5||24||13||18||25||23||183||25|
|17||Phish Food||USA50055||Alexis Michas||26||23||22||21||20||20||25||19||17||193||26|