Langenargen/Bodensee (Match Center Germany/Match Race Germany), 1. Juni 2017. The 20th Jubilee Edition of Match Race Germany is officially opened. Twelve teams from ten countries lined up fort he opening duels. It was Eric Monnins Albert Riele Swiss Team which draw first blood by winning all three of their matches on Thursday. The Confederates lead the rankings undefeated by 3:0 and underlined what they said before the first starting gun was fired: „We want to still sail on the last day!“ Cleary, the Swiss are reaching out for their first victory on Lake Constance.
The German 220+ crew of Markus Wieser (Deutscher Touring Yacht Club) and Max Gurgel’s Vmax Racing (Hamburger Segel-Club) each won one race. Wieser`s Bavaria-Express defeated Dejan Presen’s Slovenian Lumba Match Race Team, which suffered from an early start and had to dip the line again. But Wieser also lost two duels to Mati Sepp’s Estonian Sailing Team und Lukasz Wosinski’s Polish Delphia Sailing Team and ended the day with a 1:2 score. Wieser’s long-term crew member Matti Paschen stated, „we are improving in our maneuvres, our starts are good, our speed is upgradeable. But the most important thing is: We are hugely enjoying sailing together again and have loads of fun.“ Matti Paschen was part of Wieser’s crew when he won the 2001 edition 16 years ago. Till today Wieser is the only German who ever won Germany’s oldest and most famous matchrace regatta.
Just like Wieser’s crew, Max Gurgel’s Vmax Racing lost to the Estonians but surprisingly defeated the Finnish team of Olli-Pekka Lumijärvi which is powered by current World Champion and tactician Phil Robertson from New Zealand. Gurgel’s crew from Hamburg in Germany won the 2016 German Matchracing Championship and thus earned a Wild Card for Match Race Germany. The Northern Germans have set themselves an ambitious goal for their first participation in Match Race Germany. Helmsman and physicist Max Gurgel said, „we would very much like to qualifiy for the semi finals.“ Gurgel’s German quintet can also count on it’s big boat experience as they won the 2012, 2014 and 2016 German Offshore Championship and are well know as successful sailors and being technically super smart.
The qualification round of Match Race Germany will be continued on Friday and ends after 22 flights with a total of 66 matches, before the best teams move on to the next round. The German Match Race Grand Prix ends on Whit Monday which is reserved for the final and the official awards ceremony.