James Ellis and Andrew Glover rounded off a sensational 2008 Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championships for RYA Team GBR as they grabbed a final day bronze to leave Britain sitting top of the medal table as well as winners of the prestigious Volvo Trophy.
After the euphoria of Britain claiming double gold and clinching the Volvo Trophy – presented to the top performing nation at the Championships – for the first time in 12 years on a thrilling penultimate day Thursday, Ellis and Glover’s hard-fought SL16 catamaran bronze was the cream on top of an already very sweet cake for the young Brits in Arhus, Denmark.
Despite posting a discarded ninth in their final race and finishing tied on 39 points with Singapore duo Wen Chun Low and Jonathan Russel Wei Xiang Chew, 17-year-old Ellis from Plymouth and Weymouth’s Glover, 16, clinched their place on the podium courtesy of a countback. This was the second consecutive year both boys have medalled at the ISAF Youth Worlds, Ellis claiming boy’s 29er bronze and Glover Hobie 16 gold in Canada last summer.
With Frances Peters and Claire Lasko and James Peters and Ed Fitzgerald consolidating the girls’ and boys’ 29er titles they wrapped up yesterday, Britain’s final tally of two golds and one bronze saw them head the medal table ahead of Cyprus (two golds) and Australia (one gold, one bronze).
Great Britain’s Frances Peters and Claire Lasko celebrate winning the 29er class at the 2008 Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship. - onEdition ©?nid=46622
Simon Wergan, RYA Youth Manager, had just one word for his team’s show this week.
'Stunning,' he enthused, 'There is no doubt in my mind that there are some very special sailors in this group, the results of all the medal winners were outstanding but we have really sailed as a team here and when people have needed to post results to score us points in the Volvo Trophy standings, they went out and did it.
'It’s not been an easy regatta. There has been unpredictable wind and current all week and the sailors have dealt with it to the best of their abilities.'
Of the gold-medal winning performance of Hayling Island’s James Peters, 15, and Chichester’s Ed Fitzgerald, who turns 16 tomorrow, Wergan added:
James Peters and Edward Fitzgerald from Great Britain celebrate winning the 29er class at the award ceremony of the 2008 Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship - onEdition ©?nid=46622
'They finished 11 points ahead of the second-place crew in the end and were the class act all week. They were absolutely stunning and have sailed with a maturity well beyond their youth.'
Britain last won the Volvo Trophy in 1996, having first claimed the top prize the previous year.
John Derbyshire, RYA Performance Director, said: 'This is a really great result for British sailing. To have a brother and sister both winning gold in different boats is just incredible and for the SL16 boys to have both won medals for the second year is also a great achievement.
However every team member scored points to contribute to the overall Volvo Trophy success and every one of them can be incredibly proud.' Final RYA Team GBR results:
Laser – Stuart Godwin 5th
Laser Radial – Chloe Martin 13th
SL16 – James Ellis and Andrew Glover BRONZE
29er Boys – James Peters and Ed Fitzgerald GOLD
29er Girls – Frances Peters and Claire Lasko GOLD
RS:X Boys – Jacob Brubert 13th
RS:X Girls – Izzy Hamilton 6th Volvo Trophy final top five standings
(calculated based on a nation’s top four crews after each race is completed across all the fleets):
1) Great Britain – 359 points
2) New Zealand – 331
3) Australia – 329
4) France – 313
5) Denmark 249
Full Final Report here - http://www.sail-world.com/UK/Volvo-Trophy-goes-to-Britain-at-Youth-Worlds/46619
Jim Saltonstall Honoured - http://www.sail-world.com/UK/Jim-Saltonstall-Honoured-for-30-Years-of-service/46631