A competitive fleet of 19 competed at the Chilean SANTANDER J/70 Nationals. Hosting the regatta was the Real Club Nautico del Algarrobo. The regatta’s outcome was determined by a tie-breaker based on the results of the final race. Winning that tie-breaker was Mathias Robertson’s MORENITA with a 3-1-4-1 record for 9 points. Losing the countback to settle for the silver on the podium was Pablo Amunátegui’s SANTANDER with a 2-2-2-3 scoreline. The Corinthian Division celebrated their winners José Antonio Jiménez’s team on DARK SIDE.
Day 1: The first day of racing started off with winds of 10 to 12 knots from the northwest with very choppy seas from a large frontal system offshore. The PRO managed to run two races before the offshore wind finally shut down. The Robertson brothers, Ro Robles and Pino Cubillos, took the lead at the end of the first day with a 3-1 score for 4 points. Tied on points with the Robertsons was Pablo Amunátegui’s SANTANDER with a 2-2 scoreline for 4 points as well.
Day 2: On Saturday, light wind conditions offshore persisted, prompting an onshore postponement until 1500 hrs. The PRO sent the fleet offshore at 1530 hrs to get in just one race for the day. It was SANTANDER that maintained their steady pace, with skipper Amunátegui posting yet another second place to take over the lead of the regatta. Sitting just two points back was Robertson’s MORENITA with a 3-1-4 tally for 8 points.
Day 3: The final day dawned with more light winds. Again, the PRO had to do an onshore postponement that lasted until 1500 hrs. At that point, the decision was made to make an attempt to get in one more race in about 6 knots of breeze from the normal seabreeze direction of WSW. MORENITA had a fantastic start on the RC side of the line with great speed. From there, they took the lead at the first weather mark and sailed away to win the race. SANTANDER rounded in fifth place. On the first run, the wind went a little to the right, and SANTANDER and Francisco Perez’s ELEANOR RIGBY were the first boats to gybe. Andres Ducasse’s TSUNAMI and Juan Reid’s WINDMADE/DREAM YACHT CHARTERS stayed close to shore, looking for more pressure. Then, the left shift came in, and both SANTANDER and ELEANOR RIGBY had a good recovery, but it was not enough. WINDMADE/DYC managed to gybe and run into the leeward gate in front of SANTANDER; fourth at that moment in the race, but still second in overall in the standings. On the second windward leg, with good speed, SANTANDER took the left (closer to shore), and both TSUNAMI and WINDMADE/DYC took off to the right on port tack, despite the left-swinging wind direction. SANTANDER made it work along the shore and rounded the second windward mark in second place. Next, was TSUNAMI in third, WINDMADE/DYC in fourth, ELEANOR RIGBY fifth, and Matias Seguel’s VOLVO in sixth. Again, the wind shifted into the right in the final 100 meters upwind at the weather mark, so WINDMADE/DYC and TSUNAMI gybed onto port downwind, onto the favored gybe. Meanwhile, SANTANDER was still in second place, choosing the right side of the course downwind, closer to shore. In the final approach to the finish line, SANTANDER made two gybes, in front of TSUNAMI and WINDMADE/DYC. But, they did not block WINDMADE/DYC, who was free to sail a faster angle to the RC finish boat. WINDMADE/DYC finished in second by one foot ahead of SANTANDER. Thus, putting SANTANDER in between them and TSUNAMI at the finish. As a result, MORENITA won, with SANTANDER losing the tie-breaker to take second, with VOLVO third. Rounding out the top five overall was also determined on yet another tie-breaker on 21 points each. Winning that was Reid’s WINDMADE/DREAM YACHT CHARTERS, taking fourth over Ducasse’s TSUNAMI in fifth place. In the Corinthian division, José Antonio Jiménez’s DARK SIDE finished sixth overall with only Jimenez family members on board. Taking second was Patricio Natho’s TRILOGIA, and in third was Cristóbal Pérez’s IL MOSTRO.

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