ROCKWOOL Denmark SailGP Team took home a race win and a podium spot to leave itself firmly in the top three at the end of Race Day 1 at the Oracle Los Angeles Sail Grand Prix.
The Danes – led by Nicolai Sehested – started the weekend in solid form with a third place in the opening race in Long Beach, before following up with a dominant win in Race 2.
It was an almost flawless race from the ROCKWOOL boat, which led over the line and extended its lead throughout the race – finishing a leg ahead of second placed Australia SailGP Team.
“We’re really happy with today,” explains Sehested. “We sailed smoothly and felt fast – and of course, it’s always nice to take a win. Now we need to make sure we grab that final spot on Sunday.”
On one of the tightest race tracks in SailGP history, the Danes looked comfortable despite shifting and patchy breeze causing difficulties for the fleet on Race 3, where the boats had to work hard to get foiling.
“We have worked really intently on our starts this week, especially given the course was so small, it made things really challenging – so we’re pretty happy that we had three good starts and adapted well to the conditions,” he adds.
With a two-point gap on Spain SailGP Team in fourth place, the Danish boat is in a strong position to retain its overall podium place with just two fleet races remaining on Sunday.
“We have had a tendency to have one good day, one bad day, so that’s a habit we need to break this weekend. Generally, we have started slow and finished strong, so it’s nice to be heading into Race Day 2 in a strong position.”
He continues: “But we know that the scores at half-time mean nothing – so we have to go out on Sunday, stick to the plan and execute.”
Fans can tune in to the Oracle Los Angeles Sail Grand Prix by heading to sailgp.com/watch. Racing on Sunday begins at 1600 local time (0100 CEST).