(Lanzarote, Canary Islands)- The Fifth Princess Yaiza Cup, emblematic in many respects of the Canary Islands J/80 Champion, was hosted this past weekend by the Real Club Nutico Arrecife Nautica on the spectacular and windy waters off the islands. Presiding over the festivities and the regatta was none other than Princesa Alexia herself, saying to the teams at the start of the regatta, “I wish everyone lots of luck, enjoy fair winds and show a lot of sportsmanship!”
The first day of racing saw the fleet experiencing up to 19 knots of breeze and the offshore trade winds built up strength over the course of the day. It was pretty clear from the outset, the fleet of twelve boats was going to have to figure out how to overcome the dominance of former J/80 World Champion, Rayco Tabares sailing the famous Canary Hotel Princesa Yaiza. They didn’t. As Rayco’s team led from the outset.
By the second day average winds were 25-28 knots gusting to 30 knots plus– just your average Canary Islands sailing day, as Ken Read of PUMA Volvo 70 fame acknowledged after months of practice there prior to the start of the Volvo Ocean Race (quote- “I thought the roof of my condo was blowing away each night!”). Nevertheless, after contemplating for awhile the decision to go sailing, even the hardiest souls admitted it might be a bit much for most of the fleet, so the RC/PRO wisely cancelled sailing for the day.
As a result, the winner of the regatta was Rayco Tabares, the 2009 J/80 World Champion in Santander, Spain. Second just one point back was Rafael Lasso. Third on the podium was a family affair- Carlos Morales sailing with his three brothers, Alejandro, Gonzalo and Miguel!
On March 23, 2012 the President of the Real Club Nautico de Arrecife Jose Alvarez Juan Padron with SAR Princess Alexia of Greece and Denmark presided over the awards ceremony in which different crews winners received recognition in the presence of different authorities, representatives of the different ports of Lanzarote, other competitors and attendees.
Rayco Tabares said, “I am very happy to have won my third Cup in honor of Princess Alexia with my team, this year we missed a lot of people, but otherwise all participants showed a very high level of competition with excellent crew. We are preparing for the World Championship to be held in England in June and this kind of racing can help us confront these challenges. The northeast wind (typical of Arrecife) of the race was suitable for testing and competition, we were all very evenly matched and that is reflected in that nothing separates us from one point between each of the first four boats. I am more than satisfied with my team after the bad start (ED NOTE- they “shrimped” their spinnaker).
Carlos Morales on the third place IKOS Crew said, “The most important is that the first four teams were just a point apart each, it shows that there was a very similar level. We had a very good race, so I’m very happy and is a good result. This race is special because it is named after my wife and it is great to participate. In this edition I have the luck to have had a crew of my three brothers Michael, Alexander and Gonzalo. Is the first time we sailed the four together and the experience is more than positive because we enjoyed together, so hopefully we can repeat soon.” For more Spanish J/80 sailing information