ISAF Women’s Match Racing World Championship - Danish crews in command
by Joakim Hermansson on 5 Jun 2014
The Danish crews skippered by world number one Camilla Ulrikkeholm and number four Lotte Meldgaard Pedersen immediately took command when racing began today with the round-robin stage of the 2014 ISAF Women’s Match Racing World Championship in Cork, Ireland. Both are undefeated so far in this first event of the 2014 Women’s International Match Racing Series (WIM Series).
The Danish team of Lotte Meldgaard Pedersen, Anne Sophie Monk, Tina Gramkov, Nina Grunow in the 2014 ISAF Women's Match Racing World Championship at the Royal Cork Yacht Club. Michael Mac Sweeney/Provision
'We’re of course happy for the results, but I have to admit we struggled a bit with our boat handling' says Ulrikkeholm, topping the score board with five wins and no losses.
The Cork J/80s have their spinnaker halyards on the other side of the mast compared to what the Ulrikkeholm team is used to from their Royal Danish Yacht Club J/80s, causing some problems before the crew adapted to the new circumstances. The very challenging conditions on the Cork waters, with puffy winds changing both in strength and direction, together with a rather sturdy tide, also caused the Danish world ranking leaders some problems:
'We’ve had only around four knots of wind when practising this spring, so it took some time for us to find ourselves in these tougher conditions' Ulrikkeholm says, referring to the wind speed that during the day reached up to 25 knots.
The Irish sun was shining brightly also over Ulrikkeholm’s fellow club member Lotte Meldgaard Pedersen. With one match less sailed she stays at a 4 – 0 record after the first day of round-robin, hence holding second place in the regatta: 'It was really challenging today, with a lot of breeze and puffs. Some of our opponents capsized, but we managed to get out of everything where needed and could pass the marks in good order despite some spinnaker problems' Meldgaard Pedersen concludes her day on the water.
American Stephanie Roble ended the day with a 4 – 1 record, beaten only by Swede Caroline Sylvan and holding third place so far in the World Championship: 'Caroline was actually faster than us. We managed to pass her, but then she overtook us again and finished ahead. After that match we had to improve our speed' Roble comments.
With a lot of byes between matches and a couple of extra pauses due to breakdowns, Stephanie Roble found herself racing in the first flight of the day as well as in the last: 'We had a long day on the water, but tried to focus on making less mistakes than our opponents. The shifty and windy conditions keep you on your toes when you’re in front, and gives you a chance to pass if you’re behind' Roble sums up.
Results after day one of the round-robin (skipper name, nationality, wins/losses):
1. Camilla Ulrikkeholm, DEN, 5 – 0
2. Lotte Meldgaard Pedersen, DEN, 4 – 0
3. Stephanie Roble, USA, 4 – 1
4. Anna Kjellberg, SWE, 4 – 2
5. Caroline Sylvan, SWE, 4 – 2
6. Claudia Pierce, NZL, 4 – 2
7. Anne-Claire Le Berre, FRA, 3 – 2
8. Klaartje Zuiderbaan, NED, 3 – 4
9. Annabel Vose, GBR, 2 – 4
10. Mary O’Loughlin, IRL, 2 – 5
11. Anne-Christianne Kentgens, NED, 1 – 4
12. Lucie Scheiwiller, FRA, 0 – 4
13. Laura Dillon, IRL, 0 – 6