Please select your home edition

Kiel Week 2019 Day 1 - Lööf dominating OK, Hunger & Jess leading in the 505s

by Kiel Week 23 Jun 2019 02:39 PDT 22-30 June 2019
Fredrik Lööf - OK Dinghy European Championship - Kiel, Germany © Robert Deaves

Sun in Kiel, sparkling water and a light breeze from the East: The 125th anniversary edition of the Kiel Week did present itself with this summer atmosphere for the first start and did cause shining eyes of the organizers.

"We could start the classes with a slight delay", stated the Head of Organization for the Regattas Dirk Ramhorst: "First we had the fight of the two wind systems, but then the thermal winds did prevail over the gradient and became more and more stable. So we could send out the classes onto the race course in an easterly breeze. The developing conditions were super for sailing. It was a perfect day, everyone was satisfied." Looking ahead means even better conditions, since weather expert Meeno Schrader is announcing lots of sun with rising temperatures and increasing thermal breeze.

Under these conditions, four races could be sailed in the 29er skiffs, two in the OK-dinghies, that are fighting for the Europeans' title in Kiel, and three in the other nine international classes.

The OK dinghies sailed on the race course far outside and did fight with weaker thermal winds. But this could not stop the top sailors to set themselves into the scene. The Swedish sailor Fredrik Lööf, Olympic winner from 2012 in the Starboat and at the previous two OK Worlds Vice World Champion, was taking over the lead at the European Championship, followed by Jan Kurfeld. The sailor from Wismar is the title defender of the Kiel Week, is well experienced on the fjord and sailed on rank three at the Worlds last year. The current third at the Europeans is Greg Wilcox from New Zealand. He is the World Champion from 2002. Not yet in full speed was André Budzien (Schwerin). The two-time World Champion in the OK-dinghy is only 15.

In the 505, there seems to be a duel developing between the Kiel Week series winners already after the first day with three races. KiWo record winner Wolfgang Hunger (Strande) is currently in the lead chasing the 22. title with his crew Holger Jess - followed by the Danish FD Olympic winner Joergen Bojsen-Moeller and his brother Jacob.

Ocean Racers and Nord Stream Race

An enormous fleet split into small parts was presented to the spectators at the marina Duesternbrook as an "amuse-gueule" for the Kiel Week. 250 yachts in 15 starts were moving onto the offshore course between 9am and 12pm - with different objectives: While the participants of the "Aalregatta" were taking on the 28 nautical miles from Kiel to Eckernfoerde in a sort of public run, the sailors of the Welcome Race were taking on the same course with more sportive ambitions.

New in the Kiel Week program were the yachts in the Kiel Cup with ORC rating. Their way was also into the bay of Eckernfoerde, but from there returning back to Kiel. The Nord Stream Race yachts used the day as a warm-up program for their big stage race to St. Petersburg/Russia, while for the three Ocean Racers the Kiel Week start was an internal comparison of two boat classes.

The "Ember Sea" from Jens Burmeister (Rostock) was fast on the way. The Brenta 55 was in the first start group of the Welcome Race and the first yacht at the finish at 14:45. Even faster were the Ocean Racers, who started at noon. The newly baptized "Einstein" of the Offshore Team Germany (OTG), an Imoca Open 60, and the two VO65 "Akzonobel" and "Brunel" were a rare image in Kiel, but used the further course more as a boat test. "We won the start. Afterwards Chris Nicholson on the 'Akzonobel' did pass clearly. They had the advantage of the Code Zero. We even had to do without the big head sail", stated OTG Team Manager Jens Kuphal (Berlin).

For the international fleet of the Nord Stream Race, the first day of the Kiel Week was also a "warm-up". The inshore rating with three races was won by the Swedish team before the German team from the NRV Hamburg. Special guest on board was former Federal Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder with his wife Soyeon Schroeder-Kim. Schroeder will be giving the starting signal for the stage race from Kiel to Copenhagen via Stockholm and Helsinki to St. Petersburg. "That was a good kickoff today for the Nord Stream Race. And Gerhard Schroeder had fun", said Oliver Schwall from the agency Konzeptwerft, marketer of the race.

Find full results here

Related Articles

Kieler Woche 2020: Back to its roots
The motto for this year's event With the postponement of Kieler Woche from the end of June to September, the organizers of the state capital Kiel and the Kieler Yacht-Club sent a signal in mid-March. Posted on 23 Apr
Kieler Woche 2020 to take place in September
As it cannot take place at the end of June this year The current corona pandemic has an impact on almost all areas of public and private life - Kieler Woche is no exception. Kiel's unique sailing but summer festival can therefore not take place at the end of June this year as usual. Posted on 19 Mar
Kiel Week day 9
Logan and Oscar have won gold in Kiel Week after one of the tightest medal races ever seen Logan Dunning Beck and Oscar Gunn have won 49er gold at Kiel Week after finishing second in a very tight medal race. The conditions, couldn't have been better, with weather blowing in the teens and the air temperature up in the late 20s. Posted on 30 Jun 2019
Kiel Week day 8
Przybytek and Kolodzinski in pole position for 49er Medal Race Lukas Przybytek and Pawel Kolodzinski go into Sunday's 49er Medal Race with a 1-point lead over New Zealand's Logan Dunning Beck and Oscar Gunn. Posted on 29 Jun 2019
Kiel Week day 7
Danish bang the corner to make the best of a tricky FX day After a week of moderate to strong breeze at Kiel Week, day eight of the multi-class regatta brought much lighter winds and a significant change of pace. Posted on 28 Jun 2019
Kiel Week day 6
'Maelle overboard' hands Nacra lead back to Kohlhoff Italy's world-beating Nacra 17 sailors were leading the race and the regatta until a woman overboard incident that has handed the advantage back to a local team.... Posted on 27 Jun 2019
Kiel Week day 5
Phillips 49er brothers running hot in tropical Kielifornia On a hot and windy day in Kiel, the Australian Phillips brothers tore up the track to be leading the world-class 49er fleet after day one of the Olympic classes. Posted on 26 Jun 2019
Kiel Week day 4
Hunger quenches his thirst for a 22nd title The international classes concluded the first half of Kiel Week today, with a German legend winning the 505 title after a few years in the wilderness. It was searingly hot in Kiel-Schilksee today, with temperatures touching over 30 degrees. Posted on 25 Jun 2019
Support for emerging sailors at Kiel Week
A chance to start on the road to the Olympic Games Mariela Nikolova is from Bulgaria, Deisy Nhaquile from Mozambique. Both fulfill the criteria to receive the support for sailors from emerging nations and travelled to the Kiel Week. Posted on 25 Jun 2019
Kiel Week day 3
Lining up for some tense showdowns Germany's world-famous regatta has been delivering some sensational sailing conditions this week, as the international classes complete their penultimate day of competition. Posted on 24 Jun 2019
Gul 2020 FOOTERSOUTHERN-SPARS-AGLAIA-SPARS_728X90 BottomUpffront 2020 Foredeck Club SW FOOTER