Gitana 11 second at Portimao
In the 6 rounds of this first-ever Portugal Grand Prix at Portimao, Gitana 11 has clocked up an impressive tally of 5 second places. This tremendous consistency has taken the crew onto the second step of the podium behind Franck Cammas who, courtesy of this latest victory, is assured the title of 2006 Cafe Ambassador Multi Cup champion! Gitana 12 finishes 4th in the Grand Prix but in view of the complexity of the course and the boat's initial objectives, she can be justifiably pleased with her performance.

The first phase of the Cafe Ambassador Multi Cup comes to an end with the conclusion of this Portuguese stage which has been characterised by calm weather on a highly tactical and complex course. In terms of first place, the results show a degree of monotony due to Groupama having won all the rounds, while further down the field, Gitana 11 and Géant have crossed the line 2nd and 3rd respectively on no less than five occasions! But out there on the water, the competition has been strong and the sailing intense, with Gitana 11 managing to prevail over Géant, her closest rival for second place in the championship.
The fierce battle for supremacy between the two trimarans has been one of the striking features of this Grand Prix, and the last round, as described by Gitana 11 skipper Loick Peyron, was certainly no exception:
“What an exciting duel! We were so focused on what Géant was doing that we forgot about Groupama, but on this type of configuration, that was always our best option. The two boats are pretty much from the same generation and although they're a bit different, they're a good match for each other. At the start, we were only dealing with Géant and managed to control things, stringing together 3 successive series of changes of tack. We passed the first and last buoys in 3rd and moved into 2nd place on the last upwind leg. Downwind, we stuck close to her tail, as that's the name of the game. Fortunately, at the leeward buoy, she relaxed a bit, which was a stroke of luck. She waited for us to change tack and that was her mistake… it meant we were able to tack just below and managed to emerge from the manoeuvre out in front… We tacked suddenly, just like in a match race and it paid off! We've been very consistent over this Grand Prix, which was our declared objective. We've also really enjoyed sailing in contact with the crew of Géant and I think they have too, despite the fact that we came out on top most of the time! At the front, Groupama never put a foot wrong, what more can you say? They sail really cleanly and the boat is a cut above the rest in terms of speed, especially in light air.”
Thierry Duprey du Vorsent, skipper of Gitana 12…
“We manoeuvred better today. It didn't show in terms of the result because we are still far off the standard of the other boats but we are making progress, we're getting there! The daily debriefings that we've been having after the races are bearing fruit, as we're going back into the next race taking care not to offer the others gifts. That's not the real aim but we're here to learn, first and foremost. The boat is sailing tomorrow and also on Tuesday morning, and if everything's ok, I'll be setting off solo for a 1,500-mile course. It'll be a first aboard Gitana 12!”
Gitana 11 will leave Portimao monday morning in delivery mode and Gitana, tuesday 12 in solo format.

Overall Provisional Rankings for the Portugal Grand Prix –Portimao:

1- Franck Cammas / Groupama (1,1,1,1,1,1)   36 points
2- Loick Peyron / Gitana 11 (2,3,2,2,2,2)    29 points
3- Michel Desjoyeaux / Géant (3,2,3,3,3,3)   25 points
4- Thierry Duprey du Vorsent / Gitana 12 (4,4,4,4,4,4)  18 points

Cafe Ambassador Multi Cup Championship Rankings

After the London-Alpes Maritimes race (coefficient 2), the Trophée du Conseil Général des Alpes Maritimes (coefficient 0.5), the Trapani Grand Prix (coefficient 1), the Grand Prix de Marseilles (coefficient 1) and the Portugal Grand Prix -Portimao:
1-Groupama 2 (1st+1st+1st+1st+1st) 27.5 points
2-Géant (3rd+2nd+2nd+2nd+3rd) 19 points
3-Gitana 11 (4th+3rd+3rd+3rd+2nd) 15.5 points
4-Banque Populaire IV (2nd+4th+DNC+DNC+DNC) 12 points
5-Gitana 12 (5th+5th+DNC+4th+4th) 7.5 points

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