Nice, France (4E Sports) – Top sailors from around the world are expected to go all-out to clinch crucial points when the penultimate race of the 2012 Extreme Sailing Series kicks off from Oct. 18 to 21 in Nice, France.
Entering Act 7, the Leigh McMillan-skippered The Wave Muscat from Oman leads the eight-boat pack with 48 points but breathing down his neck, seven points behind, are Oman Air and Red Bull Sailing Team.
For this race, McMillan has London 2012 Olympic silver medalist Hannah Hills as new addition to the team.
“With Leigh currently leading the Series there is more pressure on me for Nice. I wouldn’t want to let them down and I hope to bring some new skills to the team. There is a lot I can learn from Leigh and the team about multihulls which could be useful for my next Olympic campaign,” Mills said.
Oman Air, captained by four-time America’s Cup sailor Morgan Larson, is riding the momentum of its victory in Cardiff, Wales.
“Our win in Cardiff gave us a fighting chance going into the final two Acts. We are under no illusion that we are the favorites or that we will win in Nice as in this field any team can win,” Larson said.
With Groupe Edmond de Rothschild, running fourth with 36 points, back to full strength with the return of Hervé Cunningham and Bernard Labro, skipper Pierre Pennec is determined to put their previous results behind them.
“We learnt a lot of lessons from the last two Acts and we need to take these to the heart and erase the results of Porto and Cardiff to cap off the 2012 season. The two training days scheduled before the competition will be very important to get the boat and the crew en route,” said Pennec.
After competing in the Alpari World Match Racing Tour, Ian Williams will take the helm of British team GAC Pindar. He will have Olympic gold medalist Anna Tunnicliffe as tactician.
“I am really looking forward to getting back onto the helm of the Extreme 40 for the Nice regatta. Walshy (Andrew Walsh) did a great job standing in for the last two regattas but having got so close to the podium in China and Cardiff this year I really feel it is just a matter of time,” Williams said.
“I am very much looking forward to sailing with Rick Peacock and Anna Tunnicliffe for the first time and hope this is the regatta where we can finally crack it,” he added.