(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) Thousands of enthusiasts cheered on from the coastline of the Cardiff Bay in Wales as The Wave, Muscat gave its opponents a masterclass to secure victory in Act 6 of the 2013 Extreme Sailing Series (ESS) in emphatic fashion.
The Oman Sail team's crew, skippered by Leigh McMillan, was unflappable on the final day, on Monday, winning three of the seven races to not just win the Act but also jump to the top spot of the overall leaderboard.
McMillan and his crew of Pete Greenhalgh and Ed Smyth along with Omani sailors - Musab al Hadi and Hashim al Rashdi - came flawlessly out of the blocks, getting out of the clutches of their competitors and sailing in their own rhythm in punishingly light wind conditions.
The team maintained consistency throughout the event, delivering 11 race wins in all. McMillan and Co finished their adventure on Welsh waters with 239 points.
Alinghi came in second with 225 points, followed by SAP Extreme Sailing Team (223), Red Bull Sailing Team (212) and Real Team Sailing Team (180).
In the season's standings, The Wave, Muscat is right on top with 46 points, followed by Alinghi (45) on No 2. Red Bull is on third with 37 points, followed by SAP (35) and Realteam (28).
While the crowds basked in the sunshine on Monday, out on the race track, shifting winds that got lighter as the day progressed saw tactics become trickier.
In the challenging conditions - perhaps the most challenging the fleet has faced all year - mistakes were punished hard, something Alinghi skipper Morgan Larson and his Swiss team found out the hard way.
Failure to get off the start line in the second race and a penalty in the fifth race for hitting a mark proved costly for Alinghi, allowing McMillan to extend his lead.
Back on the dock, Larson was already turning his attention to the forthcoming Acts. ''Between us and The Wave, Muscat, one team had to step ahead on the season's leaderboard, and that was them. But we've got two Acts left. We're going to keep our chins up and we're looking forward to making a comeback."
During the deciding double-points race, the podium positions were changing with every manoeuvre and SAP did well to hold off the onslaught from Austria's Red Bull, claiming the third place in the Act.
Rasmus Kostner, SAP's tactician and co-skipper, said, ''It was a very close race and everything that could have happened did happen with the lead changing the whole time. It was so shifty that you never knew if you were ahead or behind.
''To finish third is fantastic for us, that is what we were aiming for going into this event. It was our goal to see if we could try to finish on the podium against some really good teams.''
The next stop for the Extreme 40 fleet is Nice, on the French Riviera, for Act 7, to be held from October 3-6.
Results [Act 6]: 1 The Wave, Muscat (239 pts), 2 Alinghi (225), 3 SAP Extreme Sailing Team (223), 4 Red Bull Sailing Team (212), 5 Realteam (180), 6 China Spirit (162), 7 GAC Pindar (135), 8 Team Wales (125).
Overall standings: 1 The Wave, Muscat (46 pts), 2 Alinghi (45), 3 Red Bull Sailing Team (37), 4 SAP Extreme Sailing Team (35), 5 Realteam (28), 6 GAC Pindar (26), 7 Team X Invitational (21), 8 Team Korea (16).<