Sounio, Sunday, July 26th, 2015, 10:00.
After 21 hours of hard core racing OPTIMUM 3-ASPIDA-SAXOBANK reached Cape Sounio under thick foggy conditions that provided zero visibility, making it impossible to find the Temple of Poseidon and the finishing line. The Optimum crew nearly hit the rocks to make sure they crossed the line and were relieved to get the horn from the Race Committee signaling the end of the 52nd Aegean Rally for them. We are currently motoring back to our Optimum base in Kalamaki, Alimos Marina with mixed feelings. Happy that the torture of sailing in extremely light winds for so long, through the whole night is over and unhappy because we know we missed 1st place and we have to settle for one of the two remaining podium positions for this 52nd edition of the Aegean Rally. Everybody is really tired but relieved that we head home, our thoughts being with those crews out there fighting in nerve breaking slow conditions to beat us on handicap corrected time.
“Hats off to the worthy winner BULLET TP52 Sailing Team, for cutting short our chances to win the top prize and more importantly of winning the Aegean Rally for second year in a row on a 52-footer. They were sharp covering us all the way, and when we got our chance to pass them by sailing further inshore in Kythnos island they managed to recover, eat our lead, press hard, pass and extend to an outright victory. It really made the dull conditions interesting and immensely competitive and we can’t wait for the National Championships to have another chance to fight them back. Thank you guys, you really made our long torture worthwhile” confesses co-skipper Nick Lazos tired but satisfied.
The agony will take a few more hours until all boats make it to Cape Sounio and the final results are posted. We are sure that our sponsors ASPIDA Maritime Security and SAXOBANK will be happy with either podium final result and it will be only our thoughts of “…if we had tacked at that point or made that tactical choice” that will hunt us for some time. Stay tuned for the finale verdict of our 21st effort to score high in the Aegean Rally.