Franco Greggi, Iván Cosentino, Peter Burling, Vito Contessi, Luca Contessi, Machi Contessi y Juan Correa. Foto para el álbum con el reciente timonel ganador de la AC35 y flamante subcampeón mundial de Moth.
Franco Greggi, Iván Cosentino, Peter Burling, Vito Contessi, Luca Contessi, Machi Contessi y Juan Correa. Foto para el álbum con el reciente timonel ganador de la AC35 y flamante subcampeón mundial de Moth.
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Paul Goodison wins 2017 Moth Worlds title
Paul Goodison (GBR) smashes it on the final day of racing at the 2017 McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds at Lake Garda against the hottest fleet of Moths ever assembled. Goody (to his friends), is the first foiling Moth sailor to win back to back world titles and the result is that much more special considering the high calibre of competition from the most recent top Americas Cup skippers and sailors with more Olympic medals around their necks than any other regatta with exception of the Olympic Games itself!
Going into the final day of racing Goodison begun the day with a 13 point cushion over Pete Burling (NZL) with Iain ‘Goobs’ Jensen with an outside chance of catching Burling.
The weather gods turned it on again for the final day of racing when a light ‘Ora’ started to build from the South around lunchtime and any fluffy little clouds dispersed to leave another fine sunny afternoon for racing.
The Gold fleet was sent out around 1330hrs to race on the South course to complete as many races as possible before the cut off time of 1600hrs. Race 9 of the championship started under the black flag in 12 – 14 knots of breeze with flat water. As usual, the aim was to charge to the Eastern shore and before hitting the rocks in front of the Fraglia Vela Malcesine clubhouse, tack and try to find a clean lane of pressure to get to the top of the course in good shape.
At the windward gates, the breeze was quite soft causing a number of boats to drop off the foils, especially if squeezing round the marks. On the first lap, it was Scott Babbage (AUS) leading, followed by the young gun, Gian Ferrighi (ITA) with most of the big names in the top 10. The downwind leg proved a bit more shifty and the pack shuffled. It was Tom Slingsby (AUS) who stayed in the best pressure to take the win from Nathan Outteridge (AUS) with Rob Greenhalgh (GBR) third, Burling 5th and Jensen 6th.
PRO Tim Hancock did a good job of setting up for race 10 under the same conditions. Started under a black flag it was a similar story with slightly different players. The breeze shifted a bit right and begun to drop at the top end causing some competitors to drop off the foils.
At the bottom gate, the action started to unfold, Jensen got round just in front of Slingsby but Slingers dropped off the foils bang in front of Outteridge and Babbage allowing Goodison to slide past inside avoiding the low riders. Burling was also in trouble rounding the opposite gate and dropping off the foils. Greenhalgh was also in a world of pain.
Coming into the finish it was Jensen who crossed the line with a massive lead and a big smile on his face as he closed up the points to second placed Burling to one point. Second was Goodison to all but seal the title. Many competitors had fallen off the foils in the soft patches around the course. Singsby crossed third but Burling was deep in the pack.
With time running out and the breeze getting a bit weak, the PRO announced that the third race of the day, race 11 of the world championship would be the last. The last race would be victory laps for Paul Goodison but the chase for second and third place would be decided on the last race between Burling and Jensen.
The last race started in the same light to moderate breeze, 11 – 13 knots from 215 degrees. Again the fleet used the clubhouse shoreline for a flyby in front of the grandstand of supporters. This time it was Tom Slingsby who looked like he had made the right foil choice leading the world champion elect with some of the usual suspects struggling with foil selection. Slingsby cruised across the finish line for a second win of the day with the victorious Goodison crossing in second.
A good third for West Australian, Steve Thomas, Babbage finished a consistent 4th and Jensen in 5th finishing comfortably ahead of his skipper of so many years, Nathan Outteridge. As Burling crossed in a lowly 17th, supporters scrambled for their calculators to do the maths.
Agonisingly for Goobs Jensen he fell one point short of toppling the kiwi but was very happy with his third place overall. With Slingsby’s final day score of 1,3,1 he held on to 4th and Scott Babbage came back from the brink early in the regatta to snatch 5th off Nathan Outteridge.
The Youth category went down to the wire on the final day with a fine battle between the two Italian twins Gian Marie and Stefano Ferrighi. With an 8th in the final race on Saturday and a 9th today (Sunday), Stefano stole the title from his brother by 3 places. Stefano finished 23rd overall an excellent performance in a fleet of champions.
The Master’s category swung between Jason Belben (GBR) and Rob Gough (AUS) and a similar tussle played out. Rob Gough won this one finishing 25th overall to Jason Belben’s 28th.
First in the female category went to Irish Olympian Annalise Murphy who finished 51 in the Gold group.
The Silver group was won by John Clifton (GBR) and the Bronze group won by Maximilian Mage of Germany.
PRO Tim Hancock and his team did a great job getting through so many races for a fleet of 220 Moths, the biggest Moth regatta ever assembled.
A bit shout out to the two Moth workshops running the Moth hospital to keep sailors out there on the water doing what they do. The legend that is Simon Shaw and his team at event title sponsor, McDougall + McConaghy and Simon Maguire and his dad Tony did an amazing job behind the scenes.
Also a huge thank you to Fraglia Vela Malcesine, host club for their race management, hospitality and the pasta that has kept over 200 mothies racing for a week.
Of course, it goes without saying that the regatta only took place due to the support of great sponsors and suppliers such as McDougall + McConaghy, Veneri, Zhik and Negrinautica and a long list of Fraglia Vela Malcesine local sponsors.
The 2018 Moth Worlds will take place in Bermuda and we hope to see everybody there for more high octane action in this incredible class.
NB: There are more post race interviews available under the VNR link below.
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Burling finds form but Goodison closes on second world title
Day 5 – McDougall + McConaghy Moth Words 2017
The final series of racing at the 2017 McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds got underway today in more glamorous conditions on Lake Garda. The Gold, Silver and Bronze fleets were released just after lunchtime for four races on two race courses.
The hottest Moth Gold fleet ever left the shore around 1300 hrs for 4 back to back races on the Southern course in a light to moderate breeze from the South. Consistent shifts and an over eager hungry fleet led to a string of U flags, black flags, postponements and one race cancellation when the breeze collapsed at the top end of the course.
Eventually two hours later a frustrated PRO managed to get the fleet to behave enough to sail a shortened version of the usual windward / leeward race track. The breeze settled in about 12 – 14 knots but at the top end, it was quite a lot weaker, nearer 8 knots and marginal foiling. From the start it was a mad sprint to hit the shore, right in front of the Fraglia Vela Malcesine club, again proving popular with spectators and the weekend diners out on the terrace. The leaders tacked up the shore line taking advantage of all the little bays where the breeze scalloped in puffs.
A number of boats overstood the top mark, Pete Burling (NZL) led Nathan Outteridge (AUS) and Rob Greenhalgh (GBR) third. The downwind dash was really quick, Burling crossed the finish line in around 15 minutes. Outteridge 2nd, Greenhalgh 3rd and Paul Goodison (GBR) in 4th, his worst position of the regatta to date!. Iain ‘Goobs’ Jensen up in the leaders again in 5th but Tom Slingsby (AUS), second at the start of the day, crossed in 7th.
A short turn around and race 2 started in similar conditions, however, the race course was extended a bit to make a longer race track. More general recalls and the black flag came out again. The first leg was again a mad sprint to the Eastern Lake shore. Again it was Burling leading the pack from Kohei Kajimoto, a Japanese Moth sailor who lives in Australia. Goodison was back in 6th position but gaining rapidly on Kohei downwind to the finish. Burling finished this one by a big margin, Kajimoto holding on for a really well deserved 2nd and Goodison settling for 3rd. Jensen consistently racing in for 4th and an excellent finish for Corinthian sailor Matthew Chew from Queensland in Australia.
PRO Tim Hancock didn’t hang about banging off the races, rolling straight into race 3 of the day. No real changes on the course again and all clear at the start this time. Goodison led this one from the flying kiwi, Burling with Jensen just behind. Scott Babbage (AUS) was back in the mix but Greenhalgh deep in the teens. On the last downwind Burling came in on a tight angle making use of the pressure that had started to build in the middle of the race track, (a regular occurrence at this time of day). However, Jensen and Babbage had judged the layline to the finish to perfection, soaking past Burling. Goodison scored his first bullet of the day, Jensen 2nd, Babbage 3rd, Burling dropping to 4th. Josh McKnight came in for his best finish of the final series in 5th. Slingsby in his customary 7th was beginning to lose his grip on second overall.
The last Gold fleet race of the day, number 8 of the championship, was started in a patchy breeze as the sun was getting low in the sky. The sight of a fleet of Moths spread across the lake in the late evening sunlight was a photographers dream and fully appreciated by the onlookers sipping their Aperol aperitives under the club umbrellas. Some of the big names watching some racing included Russell Coutts and his lads, and Olympic Gold medallist Santiago Lange, another master getting used to foiling catamarans.
As the leaders surged up the middle of the course it was, of course, the current world champion Goodison fighting it out with 2015 world champion Burling. This time there was the sad sight of the other former world champion Outteridge, limping in to shore with a broken wing bar. The Brit and the kiwi were sprinting clear but the chase was on for the remaining podium place. Babbage was having another good race and the home Italian fans were pleased to see Francesco Bruni amongst the leaders.
Goodison glided down the final leg in the fading sunlight to take his second bullet of the day and keep a comfortable cushion between himself and Burling before the final day or racing. Burling crossed in second to pull himself up to second overall and Babbage took third to pull back into the top 6.
Going into the final day of racing, Paul Goodison has a handy 13 point cushion over Pete Burling on 26 points. Iain ‘Goobs’ Jensen had another excellent day to move into a comfortable 3rd position on 29 points.
Goody sums up his day,
“In the first race I overlaid the first mark a bit and it put me down the fleet after that I got it together, I had a little scare on the last run in the last race, I snapped the tip off the foil so I was sailing around with a bit of drag, but hung on in there and came good in the end so pretty pleased with today. Kiwi Pete was starting really well and going upwind really nicely so it made me pick up my game a bit later in the day.”
Pete Burling adds:
“I was a pretty long day on the water, I think we were out for about 5 and a half hours so most people will sleep pretty well tonight. I am just getting used to the boat and in that last race I felt I had pretty good speed but a bit tired. Goody just kept hiking!”
Tom Slingsby slipped to 4th with a 7,8,7,8 for the day. Despite suffering more damage, Nathan Outteridge was saved by the fact a second discard comes into play after 8 final races are completed, so moves into 5th on 48 points.
Rob Greenhalgh drops down to 7th after another tough day on the water but Dave Hivey holds onto 10th spot. Also, the two Italian boats Francesca Bruni and Carlo de Paoli Ambrosi are just outside the top 10 in 11th and 12th respectively.
Gian Marie Ferrighi of Italy didn’t finish the last race of the day but remains top in the Youth category in an impressive 16th position. Rob Gough (AUS) overtakes Jason Belben (GBR) to the top Master spot. Annaslise Murphy (IRL), still with a constant smile on her face, remains the top female competitor.
The Silver fleet raced 4 races on the trot on the North course. John Clifton (GBR) continues to lead but David Holenweg from Switzerland has a good day to close the gap. In third is Olympic Laser sailor Philipp Buhl from Germany.
The Bronze fleet went out at lunchtime for 2 races then came back for a break before returning to the South course for 2 more races in the evening breeze. Grand Master, Hans Rasmussen from Denmark leads the fleet from Maximillian Mage from Germany and Youth category sailor, David Simmonds from the UK.
An exhausted cluster of mothies returned ashore for a rather exquisite aperitif and Marzadro Buffet at Fraglia Vela Malcesine supplied by event sponsor Zhik.
The final day of racing for all fleets on Sunday will not commence before 12 noon. Racing can be watched by the tracking website shown below.
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Competition hots up in the Final Series
Day 4 – McDougall + McConaghy Moth Words 2017
The final series of racing at the 2017 McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds got underway today in glamorous conditions on Lake Garda. The Gold, Silver and Bronze fleets were released just after lunchtime for four races each on two race courses.
The Gold fleet left the shore about 1400hrs to sail on the South course in warm sunshine and a 12 – 14 knots breeze from 200 degrees. The two lap courses were short and sharp taking the lead boat about 25 minutes to complete.
77 boats shot off the start line on starboard tack to tack directly in front of the Fraglia Vela Malcesine club house, where spectators were able to get a bird’s eye view from the shore.
Some competitors got squeezed out at the pin end but the start was called clear and Nathan Outteridge (AUS) absolutely nailed it. But at the leeward gate on lap 1, current world champion, Paul Goodison (GBR) had a 30 metre lead from Scott Babbage (AUS), Rob Greenhalgh (GBR), Nathan Outteridge (AUS) and Pete Burling (NZL).
Goodison hugged the breeze on the shoreline to finish with another gun, followed by Babbage in second, having a much better day after all his breakages. Greenhalgh completed the podium, Burling just squeezed past Outteridge on the last gybe for the finish.
For race 2, the course was stretched out to 1.3nm as the breeze swung to 210 degrees. The second start was another packed line and again several competitors got squeezed out including Rob Greenhalgh and Josh Mcknight (AUS). Pete Burling rounded in the lead closely followed by Tom Slingsby (AUS) with Scott Babbage in third, Paul Goodison in fifth.
Burling extended on all legs to close out his first 2017 Moth Worlds race win, Slingsby took a well earned second and Paul Goodison clawed back to third. The two former 49er & AC team mates Iain ‘Goobs’ Jensen and Nathan Outteridge finished fourth and fifth.
It was getting late in the afternoon by the time race 3 begun but conditions remained similar, with 12 – 14 knots of breeze and flat water but it had become more patchy with streaks down the middle of the course rather than along the Eastern lake shore.
Again Paul Goodison tussled for the lead, this time against Nathan Outteridge and Iain ‘Goobs’ Jensen. Disaster for Rob Greenhalgh as he suffers a broken mainsheet strop and has to retire. Positions stayed the same for the top three but a Corinthian sailor, Dave Hivey (GBR) snuck into fourth to break up the professionals. Pete Burling finished this one in fifth.
The lead contenders all piled down to the pin end for the start of race 4. Nathan Outteridge again nailed it with Tom Slingsby on his hip. Burling, Goodison and Babbage were all in the scrum but Rob Greenhalgh’s timing was just out forcing him wide to duck round to start behind the pack.
It was another mad dash to the shore to tack in front of the club house. Burling and Goodison met on opposite tacks at the top mark and it was Burling who ducked Goody to round just in the lead. Outteridge rounded third. The packed rounding forced a couple of leaders to go wide of the upwind gate.
Downwind the race became a three way battle between the three former world champions, Burling, Goodison and Outteridge. On the last leg, positions changed, Babbage came to the line on opposite tacks to Outteridge and just managed to cross his bows to take his first win of the championship, both sailors enjoying a much better day on the water. Goodison took third and Burling fourth and Slingsby 5th.
When the finals series results were added to the Qualification results the overall classification has Paul Goodison taking the lead on 8 points from arch rival Laser Gold medallist Tom Slingsby on 17 points and Iain Jensen moving up to third on 21 points. After finishing 15th in the Qualification series, Pete Burling has a much better day to pull up to 4th whilst Rob Greenhalgh as a day to forget discarding a DNF and counting a 17th. Both Nathan Outteridge and Scott Babbage are back in the top ten after their breakdowns in the Qualification series. Another top contender Ben ‘the Patonator’ Paton (GBR) suffered a re-reoccurrence of his arm injury forcing him out of the last two races.
Dave Hivey (GBR) stays top Corinthian sneaking into the top 10 and Jason Belben scores 20,19,19 to remain top Master in 24th position overall.
In the Silver fleet, John Clifton (GBR) port tacked the entire fleet to win race 1 of the day by a country mile. He repeated in race 2 and scored a 7 and 4 to open a big lead over second placed David Holenweg (SUI) and Philipp Buhl (GER).
In the Bronze fleet, Hans Rasmussen (DEN) has a huge lead over Maximilian Mage (GER) and David Simmonds (GBR).
Weary sailors returned ashore early in the evening for a ‘Bruschetta and Ravioli’ spread as the sun set over the lake. The perfect ending to a perfect day.
Racing continues for all fleets tomorrow, (Saturday). The earliest start time will be 1300hrs (local time).
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Garda’s breezes provide contrasting fortunes in qualification
Day 3 McDougall + McConaghy Moth Words 2017
The early morning Peler from the North provided contrasting fortunes for the fleet of 220 Moths racing day 3 of the McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds 2017 hosted by Fraglia Vela Malcesine. After a lunchtime break to repair boats and refuel with more pasta, all fleets were sent back out for a much more sedate afternoon of racing, but again the Garda wind gods had other ideas. By 1600hrs the weak afternoon breeze shut down for the day determining the all important Gold, Silver and Bronze fleets for the Final series.
The Green and Blue fleets were sent out early for a 0830 hrs start but a number of competitors stayed ashore to make a late judgement as to whether to sit out the first race of the day.
The Blue fleet was sailing the Southernmost course off the picturesque medieval city of Malcesine. However, just the downwind dash to the race course proved too much for many. The Peler was honking a good 20 – 25 knots with some steep waves. After about an hour the PRO got racing started but only about 16 boats got off on time. Some others joined shortly after to complete one lap and get a score on the board. For the second race of the day, race 4 of the event, the breeze did soften into the teens but the conditions were still gnarly and difficult for the club level sailors.
Paul Goodison (GBR) took up from where he left off yesterday adding another two wins to keep a perfect scoreline. He was pushed hard but never really threatened by another Olympic medallist from GBR, Simon Hiscocks, who finished with two excellent seconds. Tom Offer from Rock Sailing Club in the UK was also rewarded for his persistence adding a 3,4 to his score. There were good performances for some of the master category sailors, Americas Cup team coach, Philippe Presti (FRA) finished the tough first race and took 5th in the second. Another Americas Cup sailor, Francesco Bruni (ITA) got round the course finishing 5th in the first race.
The Green fleet set up at the Northern course which is where the lake is at its narrowest with the mountains either side. The breeze was similar here with 20 – 25 knots and with nasty steep waves. A number of mothies reported boat speeds in the early thirties (knots), recorded on their instruments.
This group was randomly loaded with rock stars and proved to be the most dramatic of the day. Double world Moth champion and hot favourite, Nathan Outteridge (AUS) blitzed the first race but agonisingly suffered another major rig failure as his mast broke going at full speed.
“It was pretty fresh out there this morning, we were getting mid 20’s and bigger gusts. At the top of our course, it was quite flat but lumpy at the bottom.”
“I managed to win the first race but then in the second race I had a pitch pole in the middle of the bottom gate when I was in 2nd or 3rd, and snapped my mast, so that is two DNF’s in two days from two different things, so I am just running over the boat pretty closely now.”
Another top contender and long term Moth worlds podium finisher, Scott Babbage (AUS) also suffered further breakages with a vang failure. Even the unflappable current king of sailing, Pete Burling (NZL) suffered a number of stacks as he appeared to be suffering from control issues downwind. Pete finished 8 and 11 for the day.
Ben Paton (GBR) usually revels in the strong winds but having crossed the finish line in 3rd in the first race, he was leading race 2 when one of his ample biceps (arm muscles) caused him pain, forcing him to retire.
The standout sailor from the Yellow group was another 49er Gold medallist and AC sailor, Iain ‘Goobs’ Jensen who found form and speed in abundance to card 2,1 from the morning session.
“I was just getting around cleanly, the boat was working really nicely, it was definitely a survival day, there were big waves and gusts of up to 26 knots, so it was basically whoever didn’t swim was going to be in the top few.”
“A few guys had new foils on and we’re still just getting used to them, but I had the standard Exocet small foils on and they were going well. It was really good fun, awesome sailing, some guys who had the Velocitek’s on were recording top speeds of 32 knots.”
Also enjoying the heavy stuff was Arnaud Psarofaghis (SUI) scoring 6,2. Emma Spiers from Australia did well to finish both races upright with a respectable 19,23 and one of the lightest and smallest mothies, Josie Gliddon (GBR) finished 22,22 with her cut down rig proving a valuable asset. Around 25 boats finished both Green fleet races.
The Yellow and Red fleets left the shore around 1100hrs, by which time the breeze was beginning to drop down to a more manageable 12 – 15 knots, fading to 10 or less for their second race of the day. The waves had also dropped resulting in much less boat damage and capsizes.
There were 44 finishers in the first race and 50 finishers in the second for the Red fleet on the Northernmost course. The race track looked a bit more one sided with the fleets sailing straight off the start line to hit the steep Western shoreline of the Lake before mixing it up with the local ferries scuttling up the coast, totally mind boggled by what was happening around them!
At the front end former Moth world champion, Josh McKnight (AUS), sailing his own Moth design, shared top spot with Rob Greenhalgh (GBR) finishing with a 1,2 for the day.
Franco Greggi who is one of 5 boats from Buenos Aires in Argentina, was one of the outstanding performances of the day in the Red fleet, mixing it up with the leaders with a 3,5.
“It was a very difficult morning because you have to choose your mast and foils carefully, I chose the smallest foil I had and I am happy I did. My main idea was to start well where there were no boats and try to use my speed in order to get to the front. There are a lot of top sailors with a lot of speed so It was really good to be with the leaders. I am very happy I am in the top 30.”
Another of the Corinthian sailors, Dave Hivey (GBR) continued his good form with a 7,3 to keep in the top group overall.
The Yellow fleet was the last to start their races, sailing on the Southern course off Malcesine. By the time they started the Peler was all but gone and they raced in a much more sedate 10 – 15 knots with flatter water. Tom Slingsby (AUS) fired another bullet and a 7th to stay in the lead bunch overall.
Fellow Australian Laser Gold medallist, Tom Burton finished 4,2 and a third Aussie, Harold Mighell from Sydney, finished 2nd, but with a bad second race finish of 26th. Corinthian, Rory Fitzpatrick, one of a flutter of mothies from Ireland finished with an excellent 7 and 1 in the morning session.
The Yellow fleet was the first to be sent out for the afternoon session in a light 10 – 12 knots from the South and flat water however after a long wait the weather gods again foiled the race committee and racing had to be curtailed for the day.
With 4 qualification races completed per group, sailors can discard their worst score. So the points table at the end of qualifying shows Paul Goodison (GBR) with a string of bullets followed closely by Tom Slingsby (AUS), with three wins and a discarded 7. Rob Greenhalgh (GBR) sits in 3rd, Iain Jensen (AUS) 4th and Josh Mcknight (AUS) 5th. Pete Burling (NZL) sits in 15th and due to damage Nathan Outteridge (AUS) is down in 35th. For the same reason, Scott Babbage (AUS) sits in 41. Some regular club mothies stack up in the top 20 which is a credit to them in such a high-class field as this.
Annalise Murphy (IRL) is the top female competitor, easily qualifying in the Gold group. There is a cluster of women who will race against each other in the Silver fleet. Emma Spiers (AUS) 102, Wakaka Tabata (JPN) 108, Josie Gliddon (GBR) 113 and Emma Gravar (SWE) 114.
Of the Masters, Jason Belben of Stokes Bay sits in an admirable 23rd, one place ahead of long time Moth campaigner Rob Gough from Tasmania, Australia. Phil Stevenson, the grand master of the fleet is comfortably in the Silver fleet in 133 spot.
The two Italian Ferrighi brothers lead the Youth category (under 23yrs), Gian Marie qualifies in 18th and Stefano in 44th.
The Final Series of racing begins tomorrow (Friday) for Gold, Silver and Bronze fleets with a first start scheduled for 1300hrs.
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Slow catch up for Qualifying fleets at Moth Worlds
There was still a lot of summer thunderstorm activity in the Lake Garda region but finally, racing got underway today on day two of the McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds 2017 hosted by Fraglia Vela Malcesine.
The 220 entrants from 25 nations were split into four groups, Yellow, Red, Blue and Green Qualifying fleets. Because of the lack of racing yesterday (Tuesday), racing was re-scheduled for early starts this morning (Wednesday).
When the first two groups left the shore it was a cool morning with semi-overcast skies and light to moderate but unstable breeze from the North and some big waves. However, this was not the usual reliably strong Pelèr and racing faced a number of disruptions during the morning session.
PRO Tim Hancock and his team from Fraglia Vela Malcesine did an excellent job of getting two races in for each group before the breeze shut down for its lunchtime siesta.
All fleets came ashore with the hope that the afternoon Ora would blow from the South, but not for the first time this week, we were foiled. So just two races were completed for each fleet.
The Yellow and Red fleets were sent out for a 08.30hrs start to catch the morning breeze. On the Yellow course, off Malcesine it was blowing 12 – 18 knots with some waves, causing a number of breakages and capsizes. By the second race, the breeze and waves dropped off to a more manageable 10 – 15 kts from the North.
Nathan Outteridge (AUS) won the first but suffered a broken stay in the second having to return to the Moth hospital onshore for surgery. Despite not finishing, he did get a score of 42 due to finishing the opening lap but it is a setback. Nevertheless, onshore Nathan remained up beat. “It’s not how you want to start your worlds but still.”
Ben ‘Patonator’ Paton (GBR) sailed two solid races scoring 2,2, but was a bit disappointed to lose the first to Nathan Outteridge by ditching on his final gybe to the finish.
Another favourite to suffer damage was Scott Babbage (AUS) who broke a push rod in race 1 to start on the back foot, but recovered with a bullet in the second race of the day.
One of the Corinthian sailors, Luka Damic from St Georges SC in Sydney enjoyed a great start to his worlds with a pair of thirds.
“We were on the Southern course early in the day and there were big waves and 14 – 18 kts of wind and I’m a big heavy guy, 95 kilos, so that suits me fine. For the second race the breeze started to drop off and the sea state dropped off which also suits me quite well so I managed to pick up two 3rd’s.”
Luka is racing a home built boat and is happy with his new rudder design which he built himself and was on trial for the first time, passing with flying colours.
Annalise Murphy (IRE) endured lots of capsizes in her first race but enjoyed a big improvement in the 2nd race with an 8th and is leading female overall.
On the Red fleet course the waves were a bit smaller and the northerly breeze a shade lighter 9 – 15 knots closer to Torbole.
Rob Greenhalgh (GBR) wasted no time with a bullet and a second. Fellow Brit and former training partner Dave Hivey, scored two excellent results as top Corinthian in the group.
“It was good fun, we had a decent northerly wind and some pretty big shifts but there was definitely a few holes in the wind. I need to work on my downwind speed a bit but I was pretty quick upwind and getting off the start line well. The main event for me is I want to be the first Corinthian.” He said on shore.
The overall leaderboard was stacked with sailors from the Red group. The talented foiler from Australia, Harry Mighell picked up two great results of 7,1 and Olympic Gold medallist Iain ‘Goobs’ Jensen (AUS) scored two bankers 6,3, although he wasn’t entirely happy with his set up. Steve Thomas from West Australia scored 4,5, and a young Italian sailor studying in Sydney, Gian Maria Ferrighi came ashore with a 3,7.
By the time the Blue and Green fleets went out mid morning, the breeze was already beginning to fade from 10 knots to 5-6 knots and the patches meant most sailors were having difficulty staying on the foils.
The first race of the Blue fleet was a bit of a Laser fest with London 2012 Olympic Gold medallist Tom Slingsby (AUS) taking the gun from Rio Olympic gold medallist Tom Burton (AUS) in 2nd.
Tom Slingsby also scored a bullet in the 2nd race of Red group to sit on top of the overall table on day 1 of qualifying.
“It was a tricky day with the dying breeze in the morning but I think more than anything I got the foil selection right, I hedged that the breeze was going to die sooner than later so I went big front foil and big back foil. In the dying breeze, I think that was what the big factor was.”
“The first race was a bit of a battle with Tom Burton and then the second race was up and down. Rob Gough caught right up but then I got back on the foils and he fell off, so I snuck a way again.” Tom said on shore.
Another amateur club sailor, Jim McMillan from Stokes Bay SC in the UK was a bit surprised to come ashore and see a 3rd & a 4th next to his name.
“I was pretty surprised actually to come away in the top 10 in my first Moth worlds race. I was actually a bit late for the start so I tacked off, banged the right-hand side and tacked to find I was leading at the windward mark.”
“But Tom Slingsby was very quick upwind and downwind, he got me on the second beat along with Tom Burton. But I was very happy to come away with a 3rd in my first worlds race.”
The Green fleet sailed in similar conditions to the Blue fleet, very light and patchy. This fleet was randomly loaded with three former world Moth champions. One of the hot regatta favourites, Paul Goodison (GBR) wasted no time chalking up two wins although he was made to work for it.
Behind him, ‘Pistol’ Peter Burling (NZL) was back out after some minor surgery over night in the Moth hospital. Pete was breathing down ‘Goody’s’ neck finishing the day with a 2,3.
The third former world champion, Josh Mcknight (AUS) sailing his own design of Moth finished the day with a very respectable 4,4. In this group, a number of sailors had one good score and one slightly average score but the conditions for the Blue and Green groups were tough even for the top pros.
The Qualification Series racing continues on Thursday 27 July with another early start for the Green and Blue groups of 08.30hrs (local time). Red and Yellow groups will not be sent afloat before 0945hrs. The intention of the PRO is to try and get at least 2 races per fleet completed.