Please select your home edition
Edition
X-Yachts AUS X4 728 - 1

ISAF Sailing World Cup - From Weymouth to Rio, the relief is evident

by ISAF on 8 Jun 2016
New Zealand's Laser sailor Sam Meech ISAF
2016 ISAF Sailing World Cup | Weymouth and Portland - Sailing World Cup Weymouth and Portland has a poetic story bubbling under the surface as the Rio 2016 Olympic Games get ever closer.

In the home of the London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition, Weymouth and Portland, the Sailing World Cup is the last opportunity for fleet racing at a recognised regatta for the majority of the sailors before the torch gets handed over to the Marina da Gloria for Rio 2016. One Olympic venue straight to the next.

It may be the last big regatta before the Games, but for some sailors it's also the first since they got the news that they would have the honour of representing their nation this summer.

Two sailors in that category are New Zealand's Laser sailor Sam Meech and Australia's Jake Lilley in the Finn. Something else they share, relief.

'It's really important to get through the selection process, it takes about 18 months and it does start to weigh on you a little bit, so to get the nod is a bit of a relief,' said Lilley.

With relief evident and selection confirmed the focus for Lilley is now, as simple as it sounds, racing, 'I'm working on a bit of race process here (at the Sailing World Cup). Most of our equipment is in Brazil right now so the main focus is on racing and not the equipment set up so much. The calibre of the fleet here is full of guys close to the top end so it's all about racing and execution. This is the first and last regatta before Rio since the selection.'

In his 'first and last regatta', Lilley will compete against formidable opponents such as Great Britain's four-time world champion Giles Scott, France's London 2012 Olympic bronze medallist Jonathan Lobert and Finland's Tapio Nirkko in the Finn Sailing World Cup fleet.

In another strong fleet and echoing the thoughts of his Trans-Tasman neighbour, Meech also felt the weight lift from his shoulders with his national selection confirmed, 'It's fantastic and it's a pressure release which has been building since half way through last year.'

Again with the same train of thought as the Aussie towards the Sailing World Cup timing, Meech said, 'It's the last big race for all us really and there are some things I want to work on before I head back out to train in Rio. The fleet looks pretty good. There are a lot of the top guys here so there should be some good racing.'

An area that Meech's preparations differ is in the processes the Kiwi has to get used to, 'The fleet size will be very similar to that of the Games so in that respect this regatta is fantastic but working one on one with the coach is a bit different as there is usually a team of us. That's a bit strange.'

Meech won't be totally alone in Rio as compatriot Andy Maloney will be in attendance to act as a training partner, but the coaching will be solely focused on him as there is only one spot per country in each Rio 2016 fleet. This is a big step out of the comfort zone for Meech who usually has a team to rely upon, 'There has been five or six of us in the squad every time I have been sailing. It feels really weird not having the other guys here and training with them.'

Whether comfortable or not, both Meech and Lilley will be looking to take the opportunity presented to them at Weymouth and Portland to race in high calibre fleets in the home of London 2012, before they head to the next adventure of Rio 2016.

Getting used to the processes, the similar size fleets, the high calibre opponents and racing in the last big regatta before the Olympic Sailing Competition are all achievable steps for every sailor, including Meech and Lilley who have their national selection confirmed.

For the rest, it is the final chance to test against the future Olympians and push for a Sailing World Cup medal.

Racing kicks off on Wednesday 8 June and will conclude on Sunday 12 June with the Medal Races which will be broadcast live on the World Sailing TV YouTube Channel.
GCM Mariners Diary 2020 - FOOTERSeamo 2019/20 BottomSydney SailGP 2020 - JAN FOOTER

Related Articles

The Clipper Race Leg 5 - Race 6, Day 3
So, what is a Le Mans start? The Clipper Race fleet has made its way through the beautiful Great Barrier Reef as they navigate away from Australia and start their route to China with the first stop being Sanya in Race 6 of Leg 5: The Sanya Tropical Paradise Race.
Posted on 22 Jan
Australian 505 Championship overall
Holt and Woelfel win the event, Deussen and Snoad win Australian title The week of the Australian 5O5 Nationals was held in classic Melbourne weather. There were temperatures in the high 30s, cold 25 knot winds, beautiful sunshine, torrential rain, hail storms, light winds and perfect 8-15 knot winds.
Posted on 22 Jan
Royal Geelong YC announces $10,000 donation
Club to kick-start a 'Festival of Sails' bushfire appeal The Royal Geelong Yacht Club (RGYC) has announced it will contribute $10,000 to kick start a 'Festival of Sails' bushfire appeal in the wake of cancelling its traditional Australia Day Fireworks show, next Sunday January 26.
Posted on 22 Jan
America's Cup: Emirates Team NZ launch "The Hawk"
Emirates Team NZ revealed their new custom designed and built test boat Te Kahu in Aucklandu Emirates Team New Zealand revealed their new custom designed and built test boat Te Kahu today in Auckland. Te Kahu meaning ‘The Hawk' was rolled out of the shed on Wednesday and was christened by Ngati Whatua Orakei.
Posted on 22 Jan
2020 Hempel World Cup Series Miami day 2
Leaderboards take shape with cooler temperatures, sunny skies, and plenty of breeze Sailors were greeted with cooler temperatures, sunny skies, and plenty of breeze on the second day of the 2020 Hempel World Cup Series Miami, USA.
Posted on 22 Jan
New venue announced for 44Cup season
RC44 fleet will join Cowes Week For the 2020 edition, the event will be hosted for the first time in Portorož town centre with the RC44s moored on the main town pier and the race course set against the backdrop of the walled historic town of Piran.
Posted on 21 Jan
Previewing the 2020 Hempel World Cup Series Miami
Latest Sail-World USA newsletter from David Schmidt While cold rain and snow might be the reality across most of North America, conditions are far more conducive to high-level sailing on the waters off of Miami, Florida, where the 2020 Hempel World Cup Series Miami is unfurling.
Posted on 21 Jan
Pulse58 from RS Electric Boats
See our video tour of the RIB at boot Dusseldorf Mark Jardine, Managing Editor of Sail-World.com and YachtsandYachting.com gives an overview of the Pulse58 - the first 100% electric RIB from RS Electric Boats, the sister company of RS Sailing.
Posted on 21 Jan
Sail Melbourne International overall
Matt Wearn wins Laser Oceania Champion title Six months out from the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, Sail Melbourne International 2020 saw the world's best sailors wrapping up the five-day event with a light wind day on Port Phillip Bay on Tuesday.
Posted on 21 Jan
Record fleet for Bay of Islands Sailing Week
A record-breaking 141 boats are set to take part in three days of yacht racing A record-breaking 141 boats are set to take part in three days of yacht racing as part of “the best big boat regatta in New Zealand”, according to yachting commentator Peter Montgomery.
Posted on 21 Jan