Outteridge and Austin new 49er World Champions
by Teri Dodds / Sail-world.com/uk on 10 Jan 2008
Nathan Outteridge and Ben Austin of Australia are the new 49er World Champions. Tied in the overall lead going into the final medal race with defending champions, Stevie Morrison and Ben Rhodes of Britain, the Aussie pair won the Medal race with Morrison and Rhodes in third place.
Australian’s Ben Austin / Nathan Outteridge - 49er World Championships - Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club, Australia Teri Dodds © http://www.teridodds.com
Morrison and Rhodes took the Silver and Rodion Luka and George Leonchuk (UKR) the Bronze.
The Medal race started in a crisp 20 knots breeze with a short chop; the Australians covered their nearest opponents on the tally board GBR1 (Stevie Morrison / Ben Rhodes) starting at the pin end on top of them.
The Ukraine pairing of George Leonchuk and Rodion Luka were expected to make it a three way battle, they were just a single point back on the leaderboard. But five seconds before the start they capsized. That was the boat race for them. They took last place in the Medal race, but the Italian Sibello brothers could only manage ninth place so the Leonchuk and Luka took the bronze medal.
On the beach Ben Austin said 'We thought if we stuck to the left, with our game plan to stay with them, we’d be in good shape. We had speed on them which was great.'
Nathan Outteridge added 'We had a small speed advantage to windward after the start, got a knock and tacked off, and basically waited for someone to make a mistake.'
After they rounded the top mark first with the Brits hot on their heels, they believed 'if we just hang on here we’re OK.' Austin explained 'we didn’t want to push too hard and it (the boat) felt OK.'
Leading from start to finish, Outteridge’s only concern was to 'just stay upright, be careful in the gybes and go fast.'
49er - Final results
1 AUS OUTTERIDGE, Nathan 9 58 2 60pts
2 GBR MORRISON, Stevie 6 58 6 64pts
3 UKR LUKA, Rodion 4 59 20 79pts
4 ITA SIBELLO, Piero 3 69 18 87pts
5 USA WADLOW, Tim 5 78 10 88pts
6 GER PECKOLT, Jan Peter 1 89 4 93pts
7 ESP MARTINEZ, Iker 2 83 14 97pts
8 DEN WARRER, Jonas 37 96 16 112pts
9 GBR CAMPBELL-JAMES, Paul 45 104 12 116pts
10 AUT DELLE KARTH, Nico Luca Marc 23 111 8 119pts
RESCH, Nikolaus Leopold
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