sail-world.com -- WMRT Monsoon Cup - All or none for the top two in Malaysia
WMRT Monsoon Cup - All or none for the top two in Malaysia
Fri, 16 Nov 2012
The 2012 Monsoon Cup is set to take place 3-8 December and current Alpari World Match Racing Tour leader Bjorn Hansen believes that anything less than a Semi Final appearance from either himself or main rival Ian Williams will end their challenge for the Tour title this season.
Hansen (SWE) Mekonomen Sailing Team maintains top spot ahead of Ian Williams (GBR) GAC Pindar due to his early season successes at the Korea Match Cup and Match Cup Sweden, which powered him to the top of the leaderboard. The Swede goes into the Monsoon Cup with favourable head-to-head stats of 9-5 against his closest rival, the pair having battled to lead the overall standings for the majority of the season. Hansen said: 'Realistically, I think one of Ian’s [Williams] team or mine will take the title this year because if you look back over the season, there has only been one event in which both of us have failed to make the Semi Final, and that’s what it is going to take for the overall Tour victory.
At the St. Moritz Match Race, Hansen ensured Williams elimination at the qualifying stage by beating him in the very last race but then failed to capitalise, getting eliminated himself in the Quarter Finals. Williams feels that that result kept him in the hunt, saying: 'St. Moritz was very significant. It left Bjorn [Hansen] with a chance to go on and pick up some big points in the knowledge we’d been knocked out and it might have actually sealed the overall victory for him. Luckily for us he didn’t go past the Quarter Final and we’ve since been able to get the points needed to catch up.'
Hansen feels that it would be fitting to see the two top teams of the season so far go head-to-head in the knockout stages in Malaysia. He said: 'We are neck and neck going into this event and in a dream scenario; the Final race at the Monsoon Cup would be us against Ian [Williams] with us taking the victory. However, we know that there are 10 other teams there that will also be desperate for a good result.'
Twelve years after first competing at a Tour event, Hansen has never been closer to capturing the title. He outlined just what victory would mean to his team, saying: 'No Swedish team has ever won the ISAF Match Racing World Championship and this year is the best chance that we as a team have had to secure the title. We feel comfortable with the five man teams at the Monsoon Cup and it is an exciting thing for us. We know that we can sail well in Malaysia but you always have to hope that the week goes your way too.'
Reigning Tour Champion Ian Williams won the Monsoon Cup in 2011 and along with Hansen and Peter Gilmour (AUS) Yanmar Racing, is one of the skippers with the experience of having battled through several Tour campaigns. He said, 'We’ve been to the Monsoon Cup four times with a realistic chance of taking the overall Tour title and having experienced that position previously, I think it gives the team the knowledge of how to deal with the situation in the best possible way. We’ll have the same preparation as we did before our victory last year so we will be ready.
'I think in Malaysia, any of the 12 teams there can affect the result and everyone will be trying to win the regatta. All the teams are keen to add as many points as possible to their total on the Tour leaderboard and if that means eliminating Bjorn [Hansen] or us, then I’m sure they’ll take that opportunity.'
Williams has recently been shortlisted by both the Yachting Journalists Association and Yachts and Yachting for their respective ‘Sailor of the Year’ awards, testament to his continued impressive form this year. The Brit has finished on the podium in five of the six Tour events that he has competed in, taking dominant victories at the Chicago Match Cup and Match Race France. Referring to his results this season, Williams suggests he is happy with the way his team have performed throughout a tough season, saying: 'We’ve been really consistent and have made the podium at five out of six events. Despite having to chase down a big gap from early in the year, I always expected to be back within shooting distance in time for the Monsoon Cup. That consistency has held us in very good stead.'
The Monsoon Cup, Malaysia’s second biggest sports event of the year, will take place on 3-8 December at the Ri-Yaz Heritage Marina Resort and Spa, Pulau Duyong, Kuala Terengganu.
Monsoon Cup – Competing Teams:
Bjorn Hansen (SWE) Mekonomen Sailing Team Ian Williams (GBR) GAC Pindar Keith Swinton (AUS) Black Swan Racing Peter Gilmour (AUS) Yanmar Racing Pierre-Antoine Morvan (FRA) Vannes Agglo Sailing Team Laurie Jury (NZL) Kiwi Match Phil Robertson (NZL) Waka Racing Johnie Berntsson (SWE) Berntsson Sailing Team Adam Minoprio (NZL) BlackMatch Taylor Canfield (USVI) USone David Gilmour (AUS) Team Gilmour Qualifier
Ensign Ship Brokers
Ensign Ship Brokers was established in 1980 and has spent the last 28 years expanding our marine knowledge and developing our reputation! We strive to provide the very best service! [More info]
Festival of Sails
The Festival of Sails is the largest annual keel boat regatta in the Southern Hemisphere with over 400 yachts and 4300 competitors annually taking part in the event. [More info]
GME Standard Communications Pty Ltd
Leaders in communications and navigation. Their goal has always been to make products whose innovation, convenience and peace of mind can help improve the lives of their customers. [More info]
Hood Sailmakers (Aust) P/L is 100% Australian owned and operated. The first sail loft outside of the USA to be granted a franchise in 1968 by the founder Ted Hood. [More info]
Mauri Pro Sailing
Your direct access to sailing solutions. 8,000+ products for cruising and racing sailors and sailboats. We search for appropriate sailboat hardware or sailing gear and offer them at competitive prices [More info]
Navionics is proud of its superb cartographic database comprising more than 25,000 charts and port plans; the largest privately owned database of its kind, the only one using full seamless technology [More info]
Performance Sailcraft Australia (Asia Pacific)
Laser builder Performance Sailcraft Australia has taken on the successful RS Sailboat range from Britain, and is now licensed to build and distribute all of the RS range in the Asia Pacific region. [More info]
Quantum Australasia Pty Ltd
Quantum Sail Design Group designs, engineers and manufactures sails for racers and cruisers who demand the highest levels of quality and performance. [More info]
Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show
The Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show (SCIBS) is an annual four-day event which attracts buyers and marine industry representatives from across Australia and around the globe. [More info]
Sydney Rigging Specialists
Sydney Rigging Specialists is a leading company in the supply of yacht rigging, cordage, marine fittings and accessories. We are based in Sydney and work from our specially fitted out rigging shop. [More info]
Ullman Sails Australia
The Ullman Sails Australia team provides service to customers all over Australia with four main locations in Brisbane, Perth, Sydney and the Whitsundays. [More info]
Vicsail Sydney Pty Ltd, launched into the Australian sailing fraternity in 1983 and has been sailing strong ever since. At Vicsail, “We Sail the Boats We Sell”. [More info]