26 June 2022 - Porto Cervo, Sardinia - Today’s finish of the first race of the 2022 ORC World Championship has not only put results on the scoreboards of the three classes racing at this event, but also given the participants a full experience of all race conditions offered here in northern Sardinia. Yesterday and last night’s light and shifty breezes changed to a much more brisk easterly with winds approaching 30 knots at times and with large seas.
Ken Read (USA) is the helmsman this week of Karl Kwok’s (HKG) TP52 BEAU GESTE, and being the fastest-rated entry in Class A it would seem like no surprise they crossed the finish line first on their 171.87 mile course. This is misleading, however, as the team had the lead, then lost it, and then had to fight hard to get it back.
“This race was fantastic, a lot of fun, and a lot of hard work,” said Read, a past champion in the Volvo Ocean Race and multiple World Champion in numerous classes. “We had everything from no wind to really strong breeze, a perfect test of offshore skills. I’m also really grateful to step aboard with this team that Karl and Gavin [Brady] have put together because we were able to shift gears in all these conditions, and against really tough competition we were able to fight back.”
In Class B the reigning ORC World Champion team on Catalin Trandafir’s (ROU) Grand Soleil 44P ESSENTIA44 looked to be on top of the results until 2.5 hours later another Romanian team - Catalin Corduneanu’s First 40.7 IRONY - crossed the finish line to corrected time victory. This too was close: after 27 hours of racing on the Class B course of 152.83 miles IRONY won by a mere 4 minutes and 14 seconds.