The competition and participation continue to increase in the J/70 Monaco Winter Series. After a long holiday break, the J/70 sailors in Europe got back to business in the third installment of the series in Monte Carlo; an event marked by a wide range of conditions that included no wind to lots of wind and waves. The PRO at YC Monaco knew he was up to a daunting task of getting off a good series given the weather forecasts for the three-day weekend. With light winds forecast for Friday, the question was how much breeze would persist for Saturday and Sunday. Ultimately, while Friday’s sailing was canceled, the next two days of racing produced some amazing racing—sun, fun, 16-20 knot winds and 5.5 foot waves Saturday and 10-13 knot winds and 3 foot waves on Sunday. In total, the fleet enjoyed five awesome races off Hercules Harbor. Surprising both the top German teams as well as the local J/70s at YC Monaco was the performance by Steffen Hepberger and Dennis Mehlig’s team on ESPRIT D’EQUIPE. Posting only top three scores of 3-2-1-3-2, Hepberger’s crew mastered the very tricky local conditions to win the regatta with just 8 points net. Second overall was a rapidly ascending United Kingdom crew, Ian Wilson’s JOYRIDE, with a 4-1-2-2-4 tally for just 9 points net. The Blankeneser Segel Club Hamburg showed up with a brand new J/70 for the Monaco event. Skipper Claas Lehmann with crew of Björn Athmer, Marc Daniel Mählmann and Dennis Ruge sailed a very strong regatta after a disappointing first race. In the end, their 8-3-6-1-3 record vindicated their ability to sail in the top three. Rounding out the top five were the top two YC Monaco teams—Ian Isley amd Francois Brenac’s ST ANDREWS in fourth with 16 points and Jacopo Carrain and Enrico Fonda’s CARPE DIEM in fifth with 17 points. It was close racing for the fleet, with five separate winners for five races. The next event promises to be even closer as this fleet will be sailing the famous YC Monaco Primo Cup-Credit Suisse in two weeks. For more YC Monaco J/70 Winter Series sailing information, click here.

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