Norddeutscher Regatta Verein (NRV) member Marcus Brennecke secured the season title of the ClubSwan 50 Regatta Series for the third time in a row in Porto Cervo, Sardinia.
Together with fellow Club member Hendrik Brandis’ Earlybird, Brennecke thus also wins the national ranking for Germany again ahead of Italy.
Marcus Brennecke wrote the following recap and review of the event:
In Porto Cervo-Sardinia, after the Maxi Regatta, the traditional Rolex Swan Cup 2022 took place as the 5th and last event of the ClubSwan Class. The ClubSwan 36, 42, 45 and 50 were looking for their champion.
Team Hatari arrived on Sunday, September 11 in the morning, and we knew the weigh-in would be tight. The crew is, besides professionals and amateurs, also selected by weight and everyone had a target weight, even I as an owner and helmsman…actually weighed in with a flat 85kg, i.e., can theoretically be above. But I supported my crew, had a target of 83kg, lost 5.2kg in a week and finally weighed in at 81.8kg – we thus reached the 980kg total weight with 12 crew members exactly on time.
That Sunday there was a lot of wind, and we decided not to risk anything as we had virtually already won the season ranking. During the week there were very mixed conditions; on Thursday it was also not possible to sail because of strong thunderstorm warnings, as well as on Saturday because of very strong mistral.
After we finished the World Championship in Valencia in June, especially because of our suboptimal sail development this year including the change from Quantum to Doyle, we rightly finished only on the 4th place and used our previous successful, but not quite fresh, Quantum sails for the rest of the season.
We did not always have the top speed but felt “ok.”
Overall, we sailed well, but not flawlessly. A wrong and avoidable leeward rounding cost us 4 points (from 2nd to 6th place) on Friday. On Saturday, September 17, we could not sail again due to strong mistral; not quite understandable, NautorSwan wanted to finish with Saturday and do the prize giving for the season, although on Sunday we were still fighting for the overall result of the Rolex Swan Cup.
We consequently finished 2nd overall for the season standings behind the Belgian Balthazar, strong this season, with young but experienced Volvo Ocean sailor and owner Louis Balcaen and tactician Hamish Pepper (3rd at the Worlds). Our very consistent season series was Warm up 1st, followed by 1st (Scarlino), 1st (Villasimius), 4th (WC), 1st (Copa del Rey), 2nd (Porto Cervo).
On Sunday I could not sail for family reasons, and thankfully Veit Hemmeter replaced me. In the first of the two races Hatari unfortunately had to cringe on the last downwind as 3rd, as they had gybed too close to a competitor, and dropped back to 11th place. They won the last race but in the end, it was only enough for 3rd place in the Rolex Swan Cup with 5 points behind Balthazar, and our training partner and the very-good-sailing Stella Maris (August Schram) with tactician Robert Scheidt 2nd. The world champion Cuordileone (L. Ferragamo) was 5th, and vice world champion Earlybird 7th (at the world championship still with Tom Slingsby).
You can see that competitors of this uniform boat class sail very close together. Mistakes are punished immediately but that is what makes the whole sport fun.
Photos: ClubSwan Racing / Studio Borlenghi