sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery
Sail-World.com : Competition wide open as final countdown to Wilson Trophy begins
Competition wide open as final countdown to Wilson Trophy begins


'WKSC vs NYYC - Wilson Trophy team racing'    Georgie Corlett    Click Here to view large photo

Less than 48 hours remain until the start of this year’s British Open Team Racing Championship for the Wilson Trophy (3-5 May). At 12 noon on Friday, all eyes will turn to West Kirby’s Marine Lake to see if home team and current Team Racing World Champions, West Kirby Hawks, can defend their 2012 Wilson win against 200 other top sailors, amongst them, 2012 Olympic 470 silver medallists, Luke Patience and Stuart Bithell.

With 34 top teams from across the UK, Ireland and the USA, the calibre of the competition is in no doubt. Some 300 races are scheduled for the weekend; with 8am start times, the club’s volunteer organisers are hoping to complete around 24 hours of racing.

Having made the final play-off for the last four years running, and having won the Trophy on two of those occasions, hopes are high amongst the West Kirby Hawks. Team captain, Andy Cornah, says: 'We are feeling confident going into this year’s Wilson, having performed well at all the big events - and done more training than previous years. We have a slight team update with me changing crew after sailing with Hamish Walker for nine years; I am now sailing with Charlotte Lawrence, an experienced team and match racer.'

But could this crew change prove to be the chink in the Hawks’ armour that the other teams will be hoping for? Interestingly, Hamish has made the switch from the Hawks to helm for Spinnaker, a highly experienced team that recently won the UK Team Racing Nationals title for the second consecutive year, which was also sailed on West Kirby waters. Hamish’s fellow helms are Tom Hebbert, past World Team Racing Championship runner-up, and Sam Littlejohn of fleet racing fame; they will certainly be amongst the teams vying to make Sunday’s quarter-final cut.

Now in its 64th year, the Wilson Trophy is credited with being not only the largest event of its kind in the world, but also the toughest. Andy continues: 'There are lots of good teams this year, including Spinnaker, another West Kirby team, Wessex Exempt, Southampton Male Voice Choir, Royal Thames Yacht Club, plus strong US and Irish teams, and of course, the British Sailing Team, which will be really interesting to see how they get on.'

Wilson Trophy team racing -  Georgie Corlett   Click Here to view large photo

Fronting the British Sailing Team are 2012 Olympic 470 silver medallists, Luke Patience and Stuart Bithell, who have teamed up with multiple national champion and past Endeavour Trophy winner, Christian Birrell. All three helms are relatively new to the team racing scene, but are looking forward to cutting their teeth at the world’s premier team racing event.

Luke says: 'I’m really looking forward to the opportunity to enjoy the sport outside the relentlessness of Olympic sailing. These moments don’t often get to come around often, and you never know where you can learn lessons to take to Olympic racing.'

Strong competition also comes from across the pond, with teams from Rhode Island and New York Yacht Club making the pilgrimage.

Mike Huang, who was a member of the New York Yacht Club team that won the 50th anniversary Wilson, is once again representing NYYC, and also believes the competition to be open this year.

He says: 'Who will be the toughest opposition? Some years it’s obvious and others, like this year, it’s a complex question. Each team has a competitive cycle and when there have been US teams that have kept the same team while racing together each year, they become dominant as there are few who can manage the time to do so. Then team members begin to have stronger work commitments and as practice wanes, so do results and the team that was ‘green’ two or three years ago, has now risen to become quite crisp.

'This cycle can been seen globally and looking through that lens, this year’s Wilson line up shows experience mixed with youth on many of the teams and I believe the game will be more wide open. We certainly have a lot ‘under the hood,’ and the hope is always that we knock enough dust off in the early rounds to charge in the qualifying rounds. If we get in there, you’re likely to be quite entertained by our performance going forward!'

When it comes to youth teams, leading the charge for the Under 21 trophy will undoubtedly be Schull Youth team. The Irish youngsters have an excellent track record, winning the U21 category at this event last year, as well as the British Schools Dinghy Racing Association Team Race Finals, and having claimed a silver medal in the U21 category at the last World Championships.

Several flights of matched Firefly dinghies rigged and ready to go - Wilson Trophy team racing -  Georgie Corlett   Click Here to view large photo

Other young teams hoping to excel will be Magdalen College School, and a number of top university teams, including the current British University Champions, Bristol University.

The Wilson Trophy is sailed in a Swiss League format, ensuring that racing remains tight for all teams throughout the qualifying rounds on Friday, Saturday and early Sunday. Crowds of spectators are expected to pack West Kirby’s lake wall in their thousands, taking advantage of free grandstand seating and live commentary, not to mention the chance to see two of Britain’s Olympic heroes in action sailing just metres from the lake wall.

The final rounds are scheduled to take place on Sunday from 2pm, when the action reaches its climax, with the top eight of 34 teams entering a play off for the all-important final match.

All that remains now for the volunteer organisers at West Kirby Sailing Club is to make the final preparations before the teams and umpires arrive for the first round draw on Thursday evening, ahead of what should be an exciting and fun weekend for spectators and competitors alike.

See a full line up of teams at Wilson Trophy where you can also follow the results.


by Georgie Corlett

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=109038

5:25 AM Wed 1 May 2013GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.







News - USA and the World





























Big Boat Series - It's not the size, it's the length by Erik Simonson, Pressure-Drop.US,




















470 Men and Women Worlds - Champs take over leaderboard by 470 International Association Class,


















ISAF Sailing Worlds - Laser and Radial winner images by Jesus Renedo
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Medal Race images by Sail-World.com
ISAF Sailing Worlds - Dutch dominate Laser and Radial in Santander
Royal Cup Marina Ibiza - Quantum Racing more than doubles overall lead
J/24 World Championship - Excitement builds for Newport racing
Volvo Ocean Race - Seb Marsset joins Team Alvimedica
Fall Seamanship training opportunities at New York Yacht Club
Rolex Big Boat Series: More images from San Francisco - Final Day
AWT Hatteras Wave Jam action commences on day 3
Rolex Big Boat Series: Images from San Francisco - Final Day
ISAF Sailing World Championships - Watch medal races live here
Hobie 16 Open North American Championships and Pan Am Games qualifier
ISAF Sailing World Championship - Videos from Santander
ISAF Sailing Worlds: Buckingham into Medal Race, 470's stay consistent
470 Men and Women Worlds - Vadlau and Ogar into pole position
2014 Chicago Match Cup - Defending champion on top
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Strong competition for RS:X fleets
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Big breeze on day 6 + Video
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Buckingham into Laser Medal Race
U.S. Multihull Championship - Hobie Alter Trophy to be decided
ISAF Sailing Worlds - The kind of form most sailors only dream about   
Royal Cup Marina Ibiza - Quantum Racing ahead of target   
ISAF Worlds Santander - 19 Rio 2016 Laser Radial spots awarded   
Santander 2014 ISAF Worlds - 21 broadcasters to take live coverage   
Rolex Swan Cup - Looking forward to the next 30 years   
America’s Cup: The Future is foiling – AC45s to be modified   
Volvo Ocean Race: Win a stopover trip by designing an ECsix T-Shirt   
Red Bull 49erFX: On the eve of the Worlds in Santander   
America's Cup: Ben Ainslie Racing launches partnership with Yamaha   
2014 Chicago Match Cup - Starts tomorrow   
Rio 2016 Daylight the issue for Olympic sailing regatta   
ISAF Sailing World Championships - USA 470's and Lasers battle at top   
ISAF Sailing World Championships - Santander - Day 5 video highlights   
ISAF Sailing World Championships - Santander images by Jesús Renedo   
PWA Cold Hawaii World Cup - No action on day 2   
470 Men and Women Worlds - Game on for Olympic Qualification   
ISAF Sailing World Championships: Finns off to slow start in Santander   
ISAF Sailing World Championships - Seesaw Day 5 in Santander + Video   
ISAF Sailing World Championships - 470 sailors shine in Santander   
Royal Cup Marina Ibiza - Kiwi Ray Davies returns to TP52 fleet   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT