by Malcolm Page
Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page took the first place podium spot for the 470 Class at the Delta Lloyd Regatta 2011. Malcolm Page reflects on their hard fought victory and what's next on their road to the 2012 Olympics in London.
Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page competing in the 470 Class at the Delta Lloyd Regatta 2011
It is thrilling to report that Mat and I have won our very first European 2011 World Cup event in The Netherlands last week at the Delta Lloyd Regatta.
This is great for a few reasons. Firstly, winning this regatta has meant that we have met the minimum requirements for selection in the 2012 Olympic Team. From now on we can totally focus on development towards the London Games, as we have successfully jumped this first hurdle.
Additionally, the win has now put us back in the lead of the World Cup series for 2011. But as usual, there is nothing between the boats, so the last two rounds in Weymouth and Kiel will be hard fought for the World Cup standings.
But most importantly it was great to find the form that we have been missing since coming to Europe this year. Our first two regattas of the 2011 European season saw us starting well and fading when it came to the crunch time, but this week we were able to keep the intensity and form right throughout the regatta.
It ended up generally being a wet and wild regatta. We did not complete a full regatta, all because of too much wind. To add to it, many of the days saw a maximum air temperature of around 12 degrees. So when you ad the 3.5 nautical mile sail home after a few hours of racing with the cold water of the IJsselmeer and +or- 30 knots of wind, we would be frozen right through by the time we hit the shore. It would be a very serious race back to the shower to warm up! We ended up wearing every bit of sailing gear we had in Europe.
This regatta was also a great regatta for our younger 470 team mates Sam and Will. There continual improvement and hard work saw them achieve their best result in Europe ever with an eighth place. Additionally the whole Australian team did very well. We came away from the regatta with 6 medals in total. Which equaled the local Dutch team.
Now we head to the Olympic venue in Weymouth UK for the sixth round of the World Cup. If we think the weather was windy and cold in Holland, I suspect it's about to get worse...
This is meant to be a summer sport!
Thanks for all the support.
Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page
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