ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres - World no.1 and 2014 World Cup winners
by Mat Belcher and Will Ryan on 1 May 2014
2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres - We are pleased to report a Gold Medal win at the Hyeres ISAF World Cup, which has seen us also secure the overall ISAF World Cup for 2014 and continues our hold on the no.1 World Ranking!
ISAF World Cup Hyeres Thom Touw © http://www.thomtouw.com
After what seemed a very short break following the Palma regatta, we once again found ourselves in the dinghy boat park, but this time in Hyeres, France. Although with the usual sandflies, baguettes and variable wi-fi ,contrary to what anyone could remember from years past in Hyeres... we were met with warm weather!
Although the breeze was light in the lead-up to the event, we were fortunate to have good consistent winds for the entire racing week. We had ended Palma regatta feeling we had struggled to find our usual racing form and that we had made some uncharacteristic mistakes which ultimately cost us a chance at the top podium position.
With the extra racing experience of Palma, our focus for Hyeres was to perform more to our own personal standards and an opening qualifying day posting a first, seventh, first was a better way to start!
The next few days saw a see-saw of good results with tight racing against the French, Greek and Swedish teams before on the final day we were able to secure two first place finishes in the Gold fleet to then hold a useful 17 point lead into the Medal Race. Lighter winds greeted us for the final day but the points gap allowed us to sail conservatively while keeping an eye on the Greek team who were the only boat able to mathematically beat us, and we crossed the finish line in fifth to win the event.
This marks the second ISAF World Cup Hyeres win in a row for our team, and is Mat's third in a row! This event victory also secured the overall ISAF World Cup win for our team. Although ISAF does not officially recognise the World Cup circuit anymore or award any overall prizes, similar to last year we have un-officially presented it to ourselves. Impressively since the inception of the ISAF World Cup in 2010 Mat has been the winner each year in the 470 Class!
For the team we will now return to Australia for Mat to fulfill his role as skipper of the Team Australia America's Cup challenge; but we will be looking to return to Europe in May to prepare towards the ISAF World Championships and Olympic Selection event in Santander, Spain to be held in September.
Thank you as always to our Coach Victor, and to all our sponsors, suppliers and supporters!
470 - Men - Overall Results: