Please select your home edition
Edition
Vaikobi 2019AUG - Leaderboard 3

Champions return to 2019 Hempel World Cup Series Miami

by World Sailing 26 Jan 18:59 PST 27 January - 3 February 2019
Nacra 17 fleet - Hempel World Cup Series Miami © World Sailing

The 2019 World Cup Series Miami, held out of Coconut Grove from 29 to 3 February, will see nine defending champions return to Biscayne Bay determined to defend their titles.

2019 marks the 30th edition of an Olympic sailing regatta in Miami and, with 650 sailors from 60 nations registered to race across ten events, it's expected to be another strong year of competition.

Of the 2018 Miami gold medallists, Giles Scott (GBR) is the only athlete not competing this year. Across the ten events, there are 34 Olympic medallists racing alongside numerous World and World Cup podium finishers, and the best sailors will be vying for a World Cup medal as the race to Tokyo 2020 continues.

Australia's Jason Waterhouse and Lisa Darmanin will come into Miami as favourites in the Nacra 17 after securing gold at the first round of the Hempel World Cup Series in Enoshima, Japan last September.

Waterhouse and Darmanin overthrew Ruggero Tita and Caterina Banti (ITA) in the Medal Race to claim a hard-earned title - but exactly one year ago, the competition was slightly less stressful for the Aussies. Racing on the Biscayne Bay waters in 2018, Waterhouse and Darmanin controlled the fleet all week long and simply needed to finish the Medal Race to secure gold. They did that with ease and are back to defend their title.

Santiago Lange and Cecilia Carranza Saroli (ARG) and Thomas Zajac and Barbara Matz (AUT) joined them on the podium in 2018 and also return this year.

Further contenders in the 31-boat Nacra 17 fleet include Samuel Albrecht and Gabriela Nicolino de Sá (BRA), Iker Martinez and Olga Maslivets (ESP), John Gimson and Anna Burnet (GBR) and Bora Gulari and Louisa Chafee (USA).

In 2018, Louis Giard and Helene Noesmoen made it a double French gold in the Men's and Women's RS:X windsurfer.

Both will star in their respective fleets again in 2019, but bigger fleets with strength in depth will ensure it won't be easy for them to retain their title.

Joining Noesmoen in the 44 strong Women's RS:X fleet will be her compatriot and Rio 2016 Olympic gold medallist Charline Picon, who has been competing again for less than a year after becoming a mother post Rio 2016. Although Picon spent considerable time away from the RS:X, it was almost as if she never left as she finished second at the Hempel Sailing World Championships and seventh on Olympic waters at the Enoshima round of the Hempel World Cup Series.

After a sustained period of training and preparation, Picon will have her eyes set on overthrowing Noesmoen in Miami.

Enoshima World Cup gold medallist Peina Chen will be amongst the Women's RS:X fleet, as will 2018 World Champion Lilian de Geus (NED) and Olympic medallists Zofia Noceti Klepacka (POL) and Bryony Shaw (GBR).

In the Men's RS:X, a similar French battle is expected to unfold; one that has been ongoing almost immediately after Rio 2016. Giard has locked horns with compatriot Pierre Le Coq in the World Cup Series over recent years, the pair continuously sharing podiums with minimal separation. Thomas Goyard (FRA) has also been in the hunt as the fight between the French is set to resume in Miami.

The Men's RS:X fleet will welcome 61 racers, many of whom know what it takes to stake a claim for gold.

Hopefuls for the podium include Mengfan Gao (CHN), Tom Squires (GBR), Byron Kokkalanis (GRE), Shahar Zubari (ISR), Mattia Camboni (ITA), Pawel Tarnowski (POL) and Mateo Sanz Lanz (SUI).

American hopes will be pinned on 2018 Youth World Champion, Geronimo Nores (USA).

In the 49erFX class, Germany's Victoria Jurczok and Anika Lorenz won their first World Cup title in Miami last year and, following a mixed bag of results after that, they'll be hoping to find that winning form once again.

Elsewhere, Rio 2016 gold medallists and 2013 and 2017 World Cup Miami winners Martine Grael and Kahena Kunze (BRA) are fully back into the Tokyo 2020 campaign trail. The pair stepped away from the 49erFX after Rio as Grael focused on a Volvo Ocean Race campaign, but they're 100% focused on the next Olympic Games.

They showcased their skillset at the opening round of the 2019 Hempel World Cup Series in Enoshima, Japan, claiming gold, and recently won the Miami Skiff Mid-Winter Regatta, so they will be firm favourites this week.

Their long-term training partners and on-water rivals Alex Maloney and Molly Meech (NZL) will also be in the hunt, as will Charlotte Dobson and Saskia Tidey (GBR) and Tanja Frank and Lorena Abicht (AUT).

The final returning champions from 2018 are Dylan Fletcher-Scott and Stu Bithell (GBR). They weathered a late charge from Diego Botin and Iago Lopez Marra (ESP) last year to take gold by a single point. With the Spaniards returning as well, a familiar rivalry will resume.

A fleet of 43 will sail in the 49er, and Croatian brothers Sime and Mihovil Fantela will also be in the hunt after they emerged as serious contenders following victory at the Hempel Sailing World Championships in Aarhus last year.

Germany's Rio 2016 bronze medallists Erik Heil and Thomas Ploessel, James Peters and Fynn Sterritt (GBR) and Jonas Warrer and Jakob Precht Jensen (DEN) will also fancy their chances of a podium finish.

Returnees in the remaining classes include Tina Mrak and Veronika Macarol (SLO) in the Women's 470, Luke Patience and Chris Grube (GBR) in the Men's 470, Alison Young (GBR) in the Laser Radial and Tom Burton (AUS) in the Laser.

Racing is scheduled to commence on Tuesday 29 January and run through to Sunday 3 February.

Related Articles

World Sailing Presidential Newsletter
Interim management of World Sailing following CEO Andy Hunt's departure With the departure of our CEO Andy Hunt, we began to plan the interim period. Numerous scenarios were discussed, and the SMT decided on an interim management structure where they will be directly responsible to the Board. Posted on 6 Dec
Officials announced for Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games
60 International Race Officials from 31 nations World Sailing, the world governing body of the sport, is pleased to announce the names of the Race Officials who have been appointed for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Sailing Competition. Posted on 5 Dec
Women in Sailing Strategic Review released
A report that explores gender balance The World Sailing Trust is pleased to release its Strategic Review into Women in Sailing, a report that explores gender balance and makes a case for change to address disparities within the sport. Posted on 5 Dec
World Sailing and CISM partnership
4 year project with international military multi-sport organisation World Sailing, the world governing body of the sport, has partnered with the Conseil International du Sport Militaire (CISM), the international military multi-sport organisation, to develop the sport of sailing in partnership for the next four-years. Posted on 19 Nov
Presidential Newsletter: October 2019
Catching up and keeping on track with development of World Sailing The slate of events and equipment for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games truly showcases the diversity of our sport. We are gender balanced and will have a true universal representation of the diversity of our sport. Posted on 12 Nov
World Sailing Annual Conference concludes
Final day sees the ratification of the Council decisions The ninth and final day of the Conference saw the ratification of the Council decisions made on Friday and Saturday, confirmation of the Election Committee for the 2020 General Assembly and a decision made on World Sailing's governance. Posted on 3 Nov
World Sailing's Council conclude session
iFoil selected as the Men's and Women's Windsurfer for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games After selecting the iFoil as the Men's and Women's Windsurfer for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games on Friday, World Sailing's Council, the main decision making body, concluded their meeting on Saturday 2 November. Posted on 3 Nov
World Sailing & Virtual Regatta extend partnership
Following the success of the first two eSailing World Championship seasons Following the success of the first two eSailing World Championship seasons, World Sailing, the world governing body of the sport, and Virtual Regatta, the leading digital sailing platform, have extended and expanded their relationship through to 2028. Posted on 2 Nov
World Sailing and the America's Cup look forward
The agreement was signed at the World Sailing Annual Conference in Bermuda World Sailing, the world governing body of the sport, and the Defender and Challenger of Record of the 36th America's Cup presented by Prada have reached agreement for the next edition of the America's Cup. Posted on 31 Oct
2019 Rolex World Sailor of the Year
Marco Gradoni and Anne-Marie Rindom receive the awards Italy's Marco Gradoni was crowned the 2019 male Rolex World Sailor of the Year on Tuesday 29 October in Bermuda, becoming the youngest ever recipient, at the World Sailing Awards. Posted on 30 Oct
Zhik 2019 Choice of Champions - FOOTERPandB 2019 Autumn Sale - FooterMarine Resources 2019 - Footer