Japan joined the GC32 Racing Tour in 2016 with Naofumi Kamei’s Mamma Aiuto! Like Jason Carroll’s Argo team, Mamma Aiuto! comes from the Melges 32 high performance keel boat, where it finished a very respectable third in the class’ 2015 World Championship and last year also took part in the Melges 20 Worlds finishing fourth and the same year won Copa del Rey MAPFRE aboard a TP52.
The team, which is now entering its sixth season in 2017, returns for its second season on the GC32 Racing Tour having made a few changes to their crew line-up.
Spain’s Manuel Weiller returns as mainsail trimmer/tactician along with Swedish powerhouse Jakob Gustafsson. New faces on board include Urugary’s Diego Stefani, previously with ARMIN STROM Sailing Team and Softbank Team Japan bowman Federico Sampei. According to Weiller: “One of the goals for the owner is to include Japanese sailors, so we have Federico who will be sailing with us this year. Our boat captain is Japanese as well.” They have also employed experienced French multihull sailor Hervé Cunningham as coach.
We want try to do better than last year, but mainly we just want to have fun and do our best,” says Weiller.
Naofumi Kamei intends to be on board for four of this year’s five events.
GC32 Malcesine Cup – 7th
Copa del Rey MAPFRE – 6th
GC32 La Reserva de Sotogrande Cup – 7th
Marseille One Design – 3rd
Owner-driver championship: 3rd