Portimao, Portugal - Finals day for Stage 4 of the ISAF World Match Racing Tour produced an all Australian final with Torvar Mirsky (AUS) Mirsky Racing Team yet again taking on the icon of match racing, Peter Gilmour (AUS) YANMAR Racing. The ‘Perth Prodigy’, 24 year old Mirsky, did not defend his Portugal Match Cup title from last year as the Master, Gilmour, taught his Apprentice a few new lessons and stepped into the spotlight as the 2010 Portimão Portugal Match Cup Champion.
A glowing Gilmour was almost lost for words, “It was all about the starts out there, we managed to win the last two starts giving us a good lead on both finals races”.
The Semi Finals greeted eager teams with an oscillating 8 – 10 knot wind, conditions suited Mirsky who slam dunked Ian Williams (GBR) Team GAC Pindar 3-0 and Gilmour grasped the glory from current ISAF Match Racing World Champion, Adam Minoprio (NZL) ETNZ/BlackMatch Racing, also gliding through on 3-0. Minoprio then went on to take 3rd overall much to the disappointment of Williams.
As the Fremantle Doctor style breeze blew in for finals frenzy, the racers, both skippers originally from Perth, felt a nostalgia for home and with a ‘first to 2 point final’ the pressure was instantaneous. The wind then moderated and returned to the testing Mediterranean style shifts commonly experienced on this year’s Tour. This kept both Gilmour and Mirsky on their toes to the bitter end with Gilmour winning the deciding 3rd match from a port entry.
Mirsky was humorous at the relaxed dance floor prize giving chatting to the crowd, “They showed us how to do it we learnt a lot about our starts today and my team are stoked, this is the best result so far on the Tour this year”.
There is now a mixture of movements in the overall World Match Racing Tour 2010 standings. Mathieu Richard (FRA) French Match Racing Team before Portimão sat on high with 65 points, a supreme 26 points in front of his nearest rival Minoprio. Richard was then ironically knocked out at the Quarter Final stage yesterday in an unexpected last minute lunge to the line by Minoprio. Minoprio closes the gap slightly on Richard as he moves into 3rd with 48 points overall. Gilmour shoots up from 8th to 4th with 43 points, closely followed by Williams who finishes on 42 points.
As the morning light dawns tomorrow in Perth, Australia ‘the City of Lights’ the locals will wake up to two of their highly prized match race fraternity in the World’s spotlight having pushed past some of the most respected international sailors, who now have to bow to the power of Australia as a sporting nation.
The sand of Rocha Beach will continue shaking into the night under the control of thumping tunes spun by a zebra clad DJ and the skippers will no doubt be ready to enjoy the short interlude between Stage 4 and 5. The Tour now turns its focus to Stena Match Cup Sweden starting in 8 days on July 5th.
Mirsky finished off by saying, “Sweden is our home from home as I currently live there and the team join me to train. It will be an awesome event and we are really looking forward to being in Marstrand for Stena Match Cup Sweden.”
Day 5 - Overall Standings
1 Peter Gilmour (AUS) YANMAR Racing 25 Points
2 Torvar Mirsky (AUS) Mirsky Racing Team 20 Points
3 Adam Minoprio (NZL) ETNZ/BlackMatch Racing 15 Points
4 Ian Williams (GBR) Team GAC Pindar 12 Points
5 Francesco Bruni (ITA) Azzurra 10 Points
6 Magnus Holmberg (SWE) Victory Challenge 8 Points
7 Mathieu Richard (FRA) French Match Racing Team 6 Points
8 Manuel Weiller (ESP) Team Iberdrola 4 Points
9 Bertrand Pacé (FRA) Aleph Sailing Team
10 Bjorn Hansen (SWE) Gill Global Team
11 Alvaro Marinho (POR) Seth Sailing Team
12 Eugeny Neugodnikov (RUS) Team Synergy
2010 ISAF World Match Racing Tour Standings
(After Event 4 of 10)
1 Mathieu Richard (FRA) French Match Racing Team 71 Points
2 Adam Minoprio (NZL) BlackMatch Racing 54 Points
3 Torvar Mirsky (AUS) Mirsky Racing Team 48 Points
4 Peter Gilmour (AUS) YANMAR Racing 43 Points
5 Ian Williams (GBR) Team GAC Pindar 42 Points
6 Francesco Bruni (ITA) Azzurra 33 Points
7 Ben Ainslie (GBR) TEAMORIGIN 20 Points
= Jesper Radich (SWE) Radich Racing Team 20 Points
9 Paolo Cian (ITA) Team Italia 16 Points
10 Bjorn Hansen (SWE) Gill Global Team 15 Points