After 11 months of racing the 2012 Extreme Sailing Series came to a close in Rio de Janeiro last weekend and we snapped the best of the action.
It's been a long hard season for the world's top sailors but it all came to a thrilling climax at the weekend. See what happened…
This season has seen one of the most closely contested Extreme Sailing Series in its six-year history with eventual overall winners The Wave Muscat beating the French Groupe Edmond de Rothschild by just 0.2 points.
The Wave Muscat had all but given up on the title after the penultimate round but a final act victory in Rio de Janeiro crowned them kings of the sea. The Red Bull Sailing Team, seen here in training, had to settle for a fourth-placed finish overall.
The Red Bull Sailing Team put in some last-minute training prior to the final tour event in Rio. The Extreme Sailing Series visited six different countries with 209 races at seven venues.
While the rest of the teams, including the Red Bull Sailing Team, fought it out behind the two frontrunners, it was The Wave Muscat who eventually took first place and the overall title.
“Unbelievable, at the end we were just 0.2 points ahead of second-placed Groupe Edmond de Rothschild of France,” said their captain Leigh McMillan. “Red Bull were sailing in a league of their own out there today.”
As complimentary as McMillan was about Roman Hagara's team, he couldn't hide his delight at winning the title. “We are over the moon. We are absolutely thrilled to win here in Rio, it's been an extraordinary event. It came right down to the wire. It was a huge team effort, the guys were fantastic throughout the whole season and I am very thankful for them,” he added.
The teams fighting it out for the Extreme Sailing Series title bunch together in Rio.
Roman Hagara’s Red Bull Sailing Team came tantalisingly close to a podium finish but lost two places in the last few hundred metres.
Red Bull Sailing Team skipper Roman Hagara leads his crew in a valiant effort in Rio.
The Red Bull Sailing Team's Graeme Spence prepares to race.
The Red Bull Sailing Team do battle in the final race of the Extreme Sailing Series 2012. They eventually finished fourth behind Oman Air in third, Groupe Edmond de Rothschild in second and winners The Wave Muscat.
After the massive success of this year's Rio stop the Extreme Sailing Series will return to Rio over the next few years and beyond.