Defending champ Barking Mad takes Key West regatta lead

In this photo released by the Florida Keys News Bureau, Barking Mad, owned and skippered by James Richardson of Newport, R.I., rounds a turn buoy Wednesday, Jan. 21, 2009, during race 5 of the Acura Key West sailing regatta in Key West, Fla. Richardson and his crew began Wednesday in second place, six points behind Mascalzone Latino, but claimed the lead in the Farr 40 class with three races remaining in the five-day event that is to end Friday.

Florida Keys News Bureau, Ken Stanek/The AP
Published: Thursday, January 22, 2009 at 7:46 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 22, 2009 at 7:46 a.m.

KEY WEST, Fla. Defending Farr 40-class champion Barking Mad won a race and finished second in another Wednesday to take the lead at the Acura Key West regatta.

The yacht owned and skippered by Jim Richardson won the day's fifth race and was second in the sixth.

Mascalzone Latino won three of the first four races, but also came in ninth and 10th in the 12-boat races, dropping to third overall. Barking Mad began Wednesday six points behind Mascalzone, but finished 10 points ahead.

Joe Fly moved into second place, eight points behind Barking Mad.

"Mascalzone Latino had been sailing really well so it was a little surprising they had such a rough day," said Richardson, of Newport, R.I. "Conditions were very tricky, but we were patient enough and sailed well enough to get to the top mark at the front of the fleet."

Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark ninth in the Farr 40 class.

The five-day regatta off the Florida Keys continues Thursday with two races and the final heat is set for Friday morning.

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