Open Belgian Championship IRC Ostend 19-20 September 2020
Race Report - BE Networks Sailing Team
Last weekend, the BE Networks Sailing Team participated with their X-Yachts XP 33 “X-Bie” in the Open Belgian Championship IRC which took place at Royal North Sea Yacht Club in Ostend. Despite the Covid-19 restrictions, the Race Organisation managed to attract a total fleet of 39 sailing yachts across the different Class segments IRC & CR, which resulted in a series of top races.
Based on the list of registered teams, it promised to be a weekend full of tight racing with a high level of competition. With their 33 feet long “X-Performance Yacht”, the Team knew in advance it would not be easy since they are the smallest yacht in their Class Segment.
Furthermore it was clear that last years’ winning Team “Ragazza” (BEL-9852 Mills 37 Feet) would not give their title away easily and the expectations for the “Il Corvo” Team with their freshly purchased “JPK 11.80” were very high. After all, she won the Fastnet Race 2019 in her Class Segment with the French Sailing Legend Géry Trentesaux as her Skipper.
During the course of the races, it became clear that the 2nd smallest participant in our Class Segment, Team “Njord” (Archambault 35 Feet) was after the title. They were sailing very consistent and managed to keep the bigger yachts behind.
Since lots of the scheduled Regatta’s were cancelled this summer due to Covid-19, the Team didn’t really had to chance to properly prepare themselves for this Championship. Therefore it took them a while before they were back in their racing mode. Same was reflected in the first race of Saturday which they finished 7th out of 12 in their Class (IRC 1-2).
Luckily one of their Team Spirits sounds “You always start the Championship with a Discard Race.”
Therefore they managed to smile away the first race, keep the focus and build up their position which resulted in a solid 1st place in the 3rd and last race of Day 1.
During Day 2, the BE Networks Sailing Team managed to get the boat up to speed and achieved more stable results (2 - 3 - 2).
Both Saturday as Sunday, the weather conditions were perfect and the Sailors imagined themselves sailing in the Mediterranean. With a sunny Northern breeze of about 12-20 knots, a total of 6 races were succesfully completed in the IRC segment and 4 races in the CR segment.
The Team closed the weekend with a well deserved 2nd place overall.