While the rumors abound as to whether Belcher and Ryan can make it undefeated all the way to the Rio 2016 Olympics (a claim that Belcher flatly denies), there's little question that the two are on the right path. 'A lot people have done a lot of hard work in the Australian 470 squad and there is a lot of intellectual property,' said Ryan. 'Our coach Victor Kovalenko has ten medals and I don't have any yet, so I certainly want to keep the knowledge advantage a bit longer if we can.'
Sail-World's Rob Kothe and Richard Gladwell are both on hand at Melbourne to cover this ISAF World Cup, so be sure to get the full scoop, inside this issue, and stay tuned to the website for more news, as it becomes known.
And in offshore news, Aymeric Belloir, sailing aboard 'Tout le Monde chante contre le Cancer', has won the Production division of the Mini Transat race after a long, tough race that was filled with plenty of rough weather and challenging tactical calls. 'It was difficult to manage,' reported Belloir of his win. 'I had to know how to rest when needed, but also when to put the brakes on when conditions became too harsh. The first night I just flopped down and I sailed [wing-on-wing] downwind. I certainly was not the fastest, but I was making very good progress...'
At the time of this writing, Production-class sailors Justine Mettraux ('TeamWork') was 286 miles out from the finishing line, followed by Simon Koster ('Go 4 it)'), who still had 338 miles left to sail. Inside this issue, get the full Mini Transat report from both the Prototype and Production classes, and be sure to stay close to the website this weekend as more boats cross the finishing line.
And in Oman, the Laser Master World Championships are proving that a strong Olympic sailing background is key for sailing fast in this ultra competitive class, irrespective of age. According to the latest reports, Australian Mark Bethwaite (65)-himself a former Olympic sailor-has been commanding the regatta, but there has been plenty of pressure at the top from other former Olympians, even if the occasional mistake also gets made.
'I am not sailing well enough,' reported Wolfgang Gerz (61), who raced Finns at the Los Angeles 1982 Olympics. 'I am up there but am making mistakes like all the others except for Greg [Adams]. This is the first time I've raced against him because previously he's been in the Radials and has just moved into the Grand master age group, but he is sailing well.' More, inside.
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