sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery
Sail-World.com : 15th Asian Sailing Championships: Nine medals for Hong Kong
15th Asian Sailing Championships: Nine medals for Hong Kong

'15th Asian Sailing Championships, 2012. HKG team members take a water break'    Kevin Lewis
Hong Kong was called nine times to the podium during the prize ceremony that drew to a close the 15th Asian sailing championships, on Saturday 25th February on the Malaysian resort island Langkawi.

The event gathered 275 sailors from 19 countries and 60 technical officials (including international jury, measurement controllers and race officers). Participating countries included China, India, Japan, Singapore, Thailand and Korea. Hong Kong entered the highest number of participants, 25 boats and 35 sailors, second only to the host country, Malaysia, which entered 32 boats. Hong Kong was present in all categories except match racing.


Most races took place in light conditions 5-12 knots of wind and scorching heat that the young sailors fought by drinking gallons of water. Several races had to be called off after the wind dropped below racing conditions. Strong currents related to the tide complicated the conditions for sailors unfamiliar with these waters.

A Hong Kong medal winners - 15th Asian Sailing Championships, 2012 -  Rory Godman  
Commenting on the overall results of the Hong Kong team, HKG Team Manager Warwick Downes said: 'We always expected the windsurfers to do well, considering how solid Hong Kong has become in this sport. And yet, this is not even the A list since the very best windsurfers were training and qualifying for the Olympics elsewhere in the world. The medal we got in the Hobie 16' was also sort of expected, and Nagisa Sakai (Laser Radial) is a strong sailor. But the rest was a bit unknown. Cosmas and Nathan's class (29ers) is new, so it was great to see them win so comprehensively. It is very unfortunate that our 470 men were disadvantaged by a jury decision in one race and the vagaries of the wind in some others. They won three races and surely should have medalled. Then, we had many other sailors who were here for the experience, especially in 420 and Optimists. '

The biggest surprise came from Aberdeen Boat Club Sailors Cosmas Grelon and Nathan Bradley who created a sensation by winning gold in the two handed high-performance 29er class against one of the very best young sailors in the world, the former Optimist World Champion 2010, Thai national Noppakao Poonpat. After a few days of racing, the struggle between the pink spinnaker (THAI 1946) and the pale blue spinnaker (HKG 1952) looked more and more like a match race. 'We started pretty bad' remembers crew Nathan Bradley with a smile.' First we did the wrong course and though we finished first, the second boat went through the finish line and beat us. We still managed to finish second on that one. Then, during race 2, we had gear failures; the tack-line of our spinnaker came loose. So we sailed without a spinnaker...' But things started looking up for the two former Optimist sailors after the third race, when it became clear that two teams, namely Thailand and Hong Kong, were the strongest contenders for gold.

A Hong Kong Gold Medal Winners Cosmas Grelon and Nathan Bradley - 15th Asian Sailing Championships, 2012 -  Rory Godman  

Hong Kong started second behind Thailand with India close on their heels. They became first on the second day by one point. Then Thailand secured two wins on Day 3 and took the lead by one point. After eight races, a single point was still separating the two best teams. But HKG1952 secured four consecutive bullets that created an almost unassailable lead. Malaysia won the 12th and last race while HKG1952 concentrated on covering its main contender, THAI 1946, and finished second, two places ahead of Thailand. Hong Kong won overall, six points ahead of Thailand. 'We kept our cool throughout the regatta and worked closely together during the whole time' said helmsman Cosmas Grelon, 17, who won the Junior World Championship for Hong Kong in the RS 500 class in Weymouth (UK) in August 2011.

'Our sailors were good, they improved over the week and their consistency paid off' said race coach Rory Godman, from Aberdeen Boat Club (ABC). 'The competition was of high level, and their result is all the more impressive that they've only trained in this kind of boat for two months before the regatta' added Godman. The predominating light conditions made it harder for the heavier ABC 29er team Peter Simpson and Louis Bond-Smith who finished sixth overall.

Both Hong Kong 29ers teams were selected after a qualification regatta took place in Hong Kong in extreme conditions early December 2011 with wind gusting to 25 knots and boats capsizing several times during most races.

A bright future, funding permitting

Looking to the future, Hong Kong 29er team is hoping to enter the Youth World championships, which will take place in July 2012, in Dublin (Ireland), and then hit the World championships in Germany, funding permitting. Unlike windsurfing, sailing gets little government support, and most events abroad have to be financed privately or with the help of sponsors. On this occasion, the ABC 29ers were shipped to Langkawi thanks to the generous support of OOCL shipping and Hellman Logistics.

29ers : an exciting newcomer to Asia

29er is an exciting dinghy class that the Asian championships welcome for the first time this year, though it is widely spread in Europe and Australia. Currently, only ABC, HK Sea School and RHKYC have included this type of boats in their flotilla, but other clubs are considering acquiring some too. 'They are very fast, very unstable and very spectacular sailing machines that offer a new experience to young sailors who have grown out of the Optimist class' commented ABC race coach Rory Godman. 'After several years of sailing Optimists, it's completely different. The size, the speed, the sails... The tactics are also less detailed in 29ers. Now, we want to minimize tacking whereas in Optimist you don't lose as much speed when you tack. Angles are also very different, especially on the downwind...' commented Cosmas Grelon, skipper of the winning 29er and a former Opti sailor.

A strong team spirit

Warwick Downes, from the Hong Kong Sailing Federation, and Hong Kong Team Manager, wants to emphasize the strong team spirit that dominated this campaign. 'We had a big team, 35 sailors, 4 coaches, and myself. We were all hanging out together, socializing, so that the whole thing came across as a real team effort. It is very important that even the windsurfers got included. It created a unified spirit. When someone did well, everyone rejoiced,' commented Downes.



'Since our first 1996 gold medal in the 1996 Olympic games, windsurfing has become very popular in Hong Kong. The government has supported the sport a lot, and this is bringing results' said Ho Chi Ho, coach windsurf Hong Kong, who won silver at the Asian Games in 2006, after his six windsurfers all got medals in this latest competition. 'China is always our strong competitor but like us and like Korea, they have not sent their stronger team to Langkawi. Some are preparing for the Olympics. Our best girl, Vicky Chan, is currently doing the European championships and Andy Leung, is training in New Zealand. They will all go to Spain for the qualifications next month' said coach Ho.

All junior sailors had to take time off school to be able to represent Hong Kong at this international event.

Hong Kong Gold Medal Winners Cosmas Grelon and Nathan Bradley - 15th Asian Sailing Chapionships, 2012 -  Malee Whitcraft  
































Results : 9 medals

Gold (2)
29er: Cosmas Grelon
Windsurf MOD Men: Ma Yik Kau

Silver (4)
Hobie 16: Tong Shing
Laser radial: Nagisa Sakai
Windsurf MOD Women: Ma Ka Him
Windsurf RSX Women: Sonia Lo

Bronze (3)
Windsurf MOD Women: Chin Yim Law
Windsurf MOD Men: Kong Chim Lam
Windsurf RSX women: Lydia Chau

Further Information available from:
Florence de Changy florencedechangy@gmail.com (author of this report)
Kevin Lewis dinghysailing@abclubhk.com (Dinghy Sailing Manager at Aberdeen Boat Club)


by Florence de Changy

  

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

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=94400

4:01 PM Tue 28 Feb 2012GMT


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







News - USA and the World









Audi Melges 20 World Championship - Final race to decide champion by International Audi Melges 20 Class Association,










Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show - 13 things to See and do by Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show,




Volvo Ocean Race: Update from Team Vestas Wind in images by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz,








Audi Melges 20 World Championship - Classic Garda conditions on day 2 by International Audi Melges 20 Class Association,
























Audi Melges 20 World Championship - Alessandro Rombelli's 'STIG' leads by International Audi Melges 20 Class Association,












Audi Melges 20 World Championship - Day 1 images by Max Ranchi
Clagett Regatta names first Executive Director
Transatlantic Race - Fleet expanded for 2015 edition
IFDS World Championship overall
Anna Tunnicliffe: Alinghi finishes second - Extreme Sailing Series
2014 18' Skiff International Regatta - Day 2
2014 Audi Melges 20 World Championship - It's go time in Garda
2nd Annual Keith Dinsmoor Regatta September 13-14
Aldo Alessio Regatta - Three days of tight racing
PWA Alacati World Cup - First blood to Van Der Steen and Offringa
Oakcliff Sailing hosts the Nacra 17, 49er and 49erFX Nationals + Video
International 18ft Skiff Regatta underway on San Francisco Bay
Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup 2014 - Quality fleet for Maxi Classic
Sailing Champions League - which is Europe's best sailing club?
Weta fun at the Wine & Roses Regatta
Extreme Sailing Series: The Wave, Muscat claims victory on Cardiff Bay
International 14 World Championships 2015: Not just for boys
Rio de Janeiro achieves 50% treatment of sewage outflow *Feature
2014 AWT Quatro Desert Showdown - Event memorable videos
2014 18' Skiff Int Regatta: Day 1 at San Francisco - Reversal on beach
Emirates Team NZ: Last race boost cannot save team from table bottom   
PWA Alacati World Cup - Furious slalom is upon us   
J/111 World Championships - The Winner is Shmokin Joe!   
J/24 US National Championship - Victory for Will Welles’ Cougar   
Extreme Sailing Series: View the Final Day's action - Replay   
NYYC Grandmasters Team Race - Reign continues for Noroton Yacht Club   
WSSR announces new World Record Around Britain and Ireland   
IFDS Worlds 2014 - Final day photos by Tim Wilkes   
2014 Detroit Cup - Morvan wins   
Newport Bucket Regatta 2014 -Images by George Bekris   
IFDS Worlds 2014 - Final report: USA qualifies for Rio 2016   
Extreme Sailing Series: Absent With-Out Leave – Ben Ainslie Racing   
2014 IFDS World Championship - New champions claim medals   
2014 IFDS World Championships - Sunday’s race images by Tim Wilkes   
Shark World Championships underway in Toronto   
Anna Tunnicliffe: Alinghi second o'all - Extreme Sailing Series, Day 3   
Formula Kite World Championships - Nocher and Bridge crowned Champions   
Emirates Team NZ: Frustrating Day 3 in Extreme Sailing Series, Cardiff   
Extreme Sailing Series: Light winds help The Wave Muscat - Day 3   
Extreme Sailing Series 2014 Act five - Absent without leave – the wind   


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 WAS US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT