Powerboating:Calm conditions upset Smith’s title bid

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Smith had been praying for rough Adriatic seas that would suit his monohull boat Condor Ferries – and adversely effect the 21 catamarans among the 30-strong fleet.

But as he and his navigator Sarah Donohue prepared to motor to the congested start line off Jesolo, Italy Smith said: ‘It’s flat calm and there’s no wind – in a word it’s horrid for us.

‘In all my years I’ve only raced once in conditions like this.

But we’ve set the boat up as best we can and if we can get a top ten finish it will stand us in good stead if the weather deteriorates as it’s forecast to do later in the week.’ Last night Smith was a lot happier after a reconnoitre had revealed bumpy water on the offshore course.

And today, with a couple of hours to go before the start, there was still hope that he might find some choppy conditions.

With an exceptionally big fleet on the start line the dash to the first turn was expected to be hectic.

Said Smith: ‘With 30 boats and the first turn buoy two miles away it should be very interesting!’ The second race of the series will be tomorrow with the third and last on Sunday.

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