Spain driver Diego Botin has given a blow by blow account of the team’s historic first event win, and said the triumph is a ‘huge motivation’ for the crew.

Spain beat Season 3 champions Australia and ROCKWOOL Denmark by minimizing maneuvers and sailing the shortest distance in tricky light wind conditions.


While ROCKWOOL Denmark made the best start off the line, it was Spain which popped up on the foils first to secure the all-important inside angle to Mark 1. “We managed to position our boat the best in the start and, after that, we managed to stay there,” he explained.

While Spain remained in front throughout the race, there were tense moments when ROCKWOOL Denmark and Australia rose onto their foils and began accelerating quickly towards the front.

Season 4 // Los Angeles Sail Grand Prix // Diego Botin with Florian Trittel Spain

“We got in a big lull at the end of the last downwind, and the Danish and Aussies were coming foiling from behind with the gust,” Botin recalled. “There was some tension there because if they’d managed to foil all the way through then they would have passed us.”

However, Botin said his team ‘just focus on staying in the pressure’ and managed ‘to stay ahead.’

The Final came after Spain picked up two penalties for infringing France while Canada rose through the ranks to threaten their spot in the Final. But Botin’s crew managed to recover a positions in the nick of time – scraping into the three-boat, shootout by just one-point.

“To be honest, after the finish [of the last fleet race] we didn’t know if we had made it to the Final,” Botn revealed. “When we knew we had made it into the Final we knew that in those conditions (…) we could win.”

Reflecting on the event, Botin said the event win would act as ‘huge motivation’ for the team.

Season 4 // Los Angeles Sail Grand Prix // Spain foiling in Final

“We know we are behind the other teams in some areas, but we managed to position the boat correctly today on the course (…) – we managed to do it – we pulled it off.”

The refreshed Championship standings see Australia move into the top spot with 17 points – but with only a one point margin ahead of Spain and ROCKWOOL Denmark.

The 10-strong F50 fleet will next meet at the France Sail Grand Prix | Saint-Tropez on September 9-10

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