Act 5 of the Extreme Sailing Series in Porto delivered the ultimate challenge in Stadium Racing for the eight international teams competing this week, with a narrow river, high walls, strong tides, big rocks and gusty winds to contend with.
After 30 races it came down to the wire between The Wave, Muscat and Alinghi in the final double pointer with just three points separating two of the most experienced teams on the circuit. Impeccable boat handling from McMillan and a win in the final race – their tenth of the Act – ultimately saw the Omani flagged team claim a deserved win who have been unflappable this week having led the charge since race eight.
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Porto is the third Act win this season for McMillan and his crew Peter Greenhalgh, Hashim al Rashidi, Musab al Hadi and Ed Smyth following victories in Oman and Qingdao which significantly leaves them tied on points with Alinghi at the top of the overall Series leaderboard. An ecstatic McMillan, whose celebratory cheers could be heard from the shore, talked through his race winning tactics.
Porto has earned itself a reputation as a stadium like no other with challenging sailing, crowds and the competitors of the NeilPryde Racing Series keeping the on-water action coming. With four Acts complete and four Acts to go, the Series is at its halfway stage and next heads to the Welsh capital Cardiff over the August bank holiday weekend where they will be hosted by the Cardiff Harbour Festival, 23-26 August.
Extreme Sailing Series 2013 overall standings after Act 5, Porto
1st The Wave, Muscat (OMA) 36 points.
2nd Alinghi (SUI) 36 points.
3rd Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) 30 points.
4th SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) 27 points.
5th Realteam (SUI) 22 points.
6th GAC Pindar (NZL) 21 points.
7th Team X Invitational 17 points.
8th Team Korea (KOR) 16 points.
29 July 2013 7:43