Please select your home edition
Edition
Bakewell-White Yacht Design

ISAF Sailing World Cup – Light winds test crews at Sail Melbourne

by Lauren Garnet on 11 Nov 2011
Tom Slingsy leads the Laser fleet around the course - 2011 ISAF Sailing World Cup - Sail Melbourne Teri Dodds - copyright http://www.teridodds.com
Sail Melbourne, hosted by Sandringham Yacht Club on Port Phillip Bay, is the opening round of the ISAF Sailing World Cup. The final day of racing tomorrow, Saturday, is set for an exciting finish with the final positions in the majority of classes still to be decided.

Light winds tested all of the crews with tight racing the highlight of day five.

Heading into the final day of racing the only classes where the Gold medals have been decided are the Laser class with Australia’s triple World Champion Tom Slingsby is 19 points clear, and the two Paralympic classes with Alex Rickham and Niki Birrell of Great Britain in control of the Skud 18 fleet and Australian Matt Bugg well ahead in the 2.4mR.

Slingsby’s 19 point lead means he can finish last in the medal race and still win with Nick Thompson of Great Britain second, while Australian Ashley Brunning and Canadian Lee Parkhill will fight out the bronze.

The 2010 Rolex World Sailor of the Year is known for his ability to perform well in all conditions. In a regatta like Sail Melbourne, which has experienced every wind strength suitable for racing, he has moved further ahead each day.

The Laser Radial is a closer contest, with Lijia Xu of China in the strongest position, 12 points ahead of Tuula Tenkanen of Finland. The battle for Bronze will be interesting with three sailors in close contention. Great Britain’s Alison Young, Krystal Weir of Australia and New Zealand’s Sara Winther are within three points of each other.


The surprise performance of the event has been in the women's 470, where the new pairing of Elise Rechichi and Belinda Stowell have won six of the 10 qualifying races and hold a seven point lead over the Japanese team of Ai Kondo and Wakako Tabata.

Kondo and Tabata won the recent Olympic test event in Weymouth and are ranked 12th in the world. The eighth ranked Kathrin Kadelbach and Rike Belcher of Germany are also competing at this event, as are the 11th ranked Amanda Clark and Sarah Lihan.

After two wins today Stowell commented that she and Rechichi were 'clicking quite well', which could be the understatement of the event. On a more serious note, she added that they were getting welcome competition from the strong Japanese combination. 'It's great to have a battle with the Japanese. Today's tacking duel had us both working,' Stowell said.

If she and Rechichi go on to win the event, and they would need to finish fifth or worse in tomorrow's medal race not to do so, it will be a remarkable debut considering that Rechichi has not sailed competitively since 2009.

Both women are Olympic gold medallists, although not as a combination. Stowell won her medal at Sydney in 2000 with Jenny Armstrong while Rechichi will be the defending champion if selected, as she and Tessa Parkinson won at Beijing in 2008.

Their gold medal winning compatriot Malcolm Page and his helmsman, Mat Belcher, have a lot more work to do if they are to win their event. They go into the medal race seven points behind the leaders, Stuart McNay and Graham Biehl of America, and four behind fellow Australians Sam and Will Kivell. Belcher and Page had a forgettable day, with a fifth and sixth placing, while McNay and Biehl scored a second and a third.

Another event that has seen very tight competition among the men is the RS:X windsurfer. Kiwi JP Tobin, who won both races today, holds a three point lead over Dorien van Rijsselberge (NED) who is one point ahead of Zach Plavsic of Canada. If the wind is light for the medal race, as predicted, Tobin will start favourite as he won both of today's 'pumping' races.

The women's field is more widely spread with Bryony Shaw of GBR all but wrapping it up today with a first and third place. However, the veteran Australian Jess Crisp moved a point closer and overtook Flavia Tartaglini for second place. Crisp is seven points behind and Shaw will need a poor medal race to lose the title.

The small Finn fleet were the first back to the showers this afternoon, with Oleksiy Borysov moving to a 10 point lead after second-placed Oliver Tweddell had a bad day with two eigth placings. The Ukranian will be almost impossible to beat from this position. Rob McMillan (AUS) is currently third, six points behind Tweddell.


The most interesting racing today, from a spectator viewpoint, was in the 49er class, where there were three different winners in the four races.

In the light and steady winds, passing lanes were again hard to find and almost every race was won by the first windward mark. Multiple world champion, Nathan Outteridge commented that 'it was about not making any mistakes at all today'. He said that a good start was essential but so was boatspeed.

'Will (Phillips) had really good boatspeed today - we weren't as quick as we needed to be,' Outteridge said.

Will Phillips and his brother Sam won two of the races, but a fourth in the third race cost them dearly. The Kiwis, Peter Burling and Blair Tuke, also suffered from two bad starts, recording a win, a third and two fourths to drop to third overall.

Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen, with a win and three seconds, hold a four point lead over the Phillips, with the Kiwis three points further back.

The medal races start at 12 noon tomorrow (Saturday) and all races can be followed live via the event website, where you will also find full Sail Melbourne website

Schaefer 2016 Ratchet Block 660x82Ancasta Ker 40+ 660x82Bakewell-White Yacht Design

Related Articles

Tom Slingsby and Nathan Outteridge - the retrospective -Part III
In Part III, the Question and Answer session, we will discover why Nathan’s nick name is George and why Tom is so fast Interview with Nathan Outteridge and Tom Slingsby. In Part III, the Question and Answer session, we will discover why Nathan’s nick name is George and why Tom is so fast at post capsize recovery.
Posted on 9 Nov 2015
Blast from the past, do you remember this? Great Video!!
One particular race in the 2012 London Olympic Laser Radial regatta in Weymouth was one of most watched sailing events One particular race in the 2012 London Olympic Laser Radial regatta in Weymouth was one of the most watched sailing events of 2012. Watch it again to remember exactly why.
Posted on 8 Nov 2015
Lijia Xu ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year 2012 - THAT Speech
Lijia Xu (CHN) was crowned ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year 2012 at an awards night in Dublin, Ireland: Lijia Xu (CHN) was crowned ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year 2012 at an awards night in Dublin, Ireland. The acceptance speech from the China sailor was one of the most eloquent ever heard. The acceptance speech from the China sailor was one of the most eloquent ever heard. If you have not heard it, you can catch it now.
Posted on 3 Nov 2013
Mat Belcher – 17 in a row - 'The harder I work, the luckier I get'
The harder I work the luckier I get, is a quotation attributed variously to Thomas Jefferson and Mark Twain The harder I work the luckier I get, is a quotation attributed variously to Thomas Jefferson and Mark Twain but perhaps of Amish origin, but regardless the sentiment is well understood. And it’s something that one of Australia´s most successful Olympic class regatta sailors and his coach understands very well.
Posted on 20 Aug 2013
Ainslie- Close to quitting sailing after Andrew 'Bart' Simpson's death
I came close to quitting sailing after Andrew 'Bart' Simpson's death, says Sir Ben Ainslie. British sailing great, Sir Ben Ainslie writes in The Daily Telegraph on after the funeral service for his close friend, Andrew Simpson, killed in San Francisco as a result of an AC72 break up, during a training session.
Posted on 3 Jun 2013
A Tribute to Bart
This video pays tribute to Andrew Simpson's many sailing achievements, His Service is to held on May 31, in England Andrew 'Bart' Simpson died in the capsize of the Artemis Racing AC72 on May 9, 2013. His service will be held on Friday May 31 in Sherborne Abbey, UK, followed by a celebration of his life at Sherborne Castle. This video pays tribute to Bart's many sailing achievements
Posted on 31 May 2013
Ainslie knighted in New Year Honours, five others recognised
Four-time Olympic gold medalist Ben Ainslie has been Knighted in the New Year Honours list. British sailor and four-time Olympic gold medalist Ben Ainslie has capped a triumphant year of sailing with a Knighthood in the New Year Honours list. British Sailing has more cause for celebration, with honours also going to Paralympic gold medallist Helena Lucas, and to Ainslie’s coach David Howlett, who were both named as Members of the Order of the British Empire (MBE).
Posted on 29 Dec 2012
2012 Paralympic Games a winner in global TV ratings
The London 2012 Paralympic Games were a TV ratings winner with pictures shown in more countries than ever before. The London 2012 Paralympic Games were a TV ratings winner with pictures shown in more countries than ever before and attracted their biggest ever international audience according to new figures published by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC).
Posted on 28 Nov 2012
London Paralympic Games debrief to start in Rio
Paralympic Games committee will share their knowledge and experiences of London 2012 with future organising committees. The organising committee of what International Paralympic Committee (IPC) President Sir Philip Craven defined as the best ever Paralympic Games, will share their knowledge and experiences of London 2012 with future organising committees and the 2020 candidate cities this week in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Posted on 21 Nov 2012
2012 Olympics- The Medalists thoughts on Kites and Windsurfers
The new Olympic Medalists were asked their thoughts on the decision to change the event from Windsurfing to Kiteboarding At the Medal Winners Media Conference held after the Medal Ceremony for the Mens and Womens Windsurfing Event at the 2012 Olympics, the new Olympic Medalists were asked their thoughts on the decision to change the event from Windsurfing to Kiteboarding the 2016 Olympics.
Posted on 2 Nov 2012